Now that this NASCAR racing season has come to an end, let's take a look at some of the surprises this year.

I didn't expect Hendrick Motorsports to dominate like it did. I knew Hendrick's drivers would be good, but to have three of its four teams finish one, two, three in the point standings is quite an accomplishment.

I know I've been hard on Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Gordon and Mark Martin this year, but I have to respect what an awesome season they've had.

And Johnson winning four consecutive championships puts him in a league of his own, so congratulations to that whole organization.

There were 14 different winners this season, but the names missing from the list really surprises me.

Who would have thought that Matt Kenseth would be the only driver from Roush Fenway Racing who would have a win this year?

Going into this season, I had thought for sure Carl Edwards would have been a contender for the championship, but he was winless this year, and didn't even make the "Chase."

Tony Stewart and Ryan Newman from the newly formed team of Stewart-Haas Racing both made the "Chase." I knew they would be good.

And I'm happy to say I am not disappointed with their season (except for the last race).

The surprise winners this year to me were Brad Keselowski, David Reutimann, Brian Vickers and Rookie of the Year Joey Lagono.

What was disappointing in 2009 was to hear some of the drivers were complaining some guys were racing them "too hard."

Come on, you guys, that's what you get paid to do.

I was happy to see NASCAR go back to the double-file restarts like they used to do years ago. It does add a little excitement to the race.

I know I had a pretty negative attitude this year toward NASCAR and I'm hoping to change that for next season.

I'm already looking forward to the 2010 Daytona 500... it's only 79 days away.

As for our local guys, I'm eager to see how well they will do next season.

Peter Dance of Warren and Bill and Billy Deak Jr. of New Milford will all race at different tracks next year.

Kyle Armstrong of New Milford will return to Lebanon Valley in New York again in the spring.

This is my last column for this race season, but I'll be geared up to do it all over again starting in February.

Happy holidays, everyone, and have a healthy and safe New Year.