NASCAR Fantasy Racing Preview: Sharpie 500
by Eric McClung, Special To NASCAR news, fantasy racing advice and statistics On Pit Row
Follow @ericmcclung on Twitter for NASCAR, IndyCar, golf and various other fantasy sports picks.August 19, 2009 12:30 pm UTC 2 Comments
As a fan, the night race at Bristol is at the top of my list. For fantasy purposes there are two big things I’m looking at for setting my lineup this week. First, the results of the first Bristol race in late March. But since that was 19 races ago, the second thing is taking the temperature of the drivers as the competition is heating up for the Chase.
Clint Bowyer has four top-10 finishes in the last five races and has run well at Bristol over his career. He’s a great play in all formats right now.
Dale Earnhardt Jr is cheap in salary cap formats- he’s been very good at Bristol and coming off his best race of the season.
Aric Almirola is my super long shot. He finished eighth and 13th at Bristol last year. He’s in different equipment now but his price tag couldn’t be any lower.
How about Bill Elliott last week? I’ll take a 16th-place finish from a C-list driver any day! Good luck this week and please leave your comments below.
Here’s an explanation of the highlighted text in the rankings. Download a printer-friendly version here.
- Y! A/B/C – The top options in the Yahoo! Fantasy Auto Racing game by driver list.
- Strong qualifier – History of winning poles or qualifying inside the top-five.
- Good qualifier – History of qualifying inside the top-10.
- Value play - Good recent history at this week’s track. Drivers to consider as low-rent salary cap options or alternative options in allocation formats.
- Risky play – Good overall history at this week’s track but poor recent finishes.
- Tony Stewart… Smoke likes the lights. Last two August races: ’08- eighth, ’07- fourth. Last two March races: ’09- 17th, ’08- 14th (267 laps led). Has led 245 or more laps in three of the last seven Bristol races. Won in ’01. Y!-B1
- Jeff Gordon… Strong qualifier. Average start of 6.8 over the last three years (five races). Average finish of 8.4 in that span, three top-five finishes. Five-time winner at Bristol: most recently in ’02. Y!-A1
- Carl Edwards… Last three August races at Bristol: first, first, seventh. Last three March races: 15th, 16th, 12th. Won the pole last August. Y!-A2
- Kyle Busch… Won in March, led 387 laps. Average finish of 5.7 at Bristol over the last four years (seven races). Runner-up last year, led 415 laps. Had led laps in four other races. Also won 3/07. Y!-A3
- Denny Hamlin… Last three Bristol races: second, third, sixth. Y!-B2
- Jimmie Johnson… Risky play. Good qualifier. Started and finished third in March; only his second top-10 finish in that last eight Bristol races. Won the pole 3/08. Y!-A4
- Kurt Busch… Risky play. Won four times at Bristol from ’02-’04 but only three top-10 finishes since, including another win (’06). Average finish of 12.6 in last three Bristol races. Y!-B3
- Kasey Kahne… Average finish of 8.25 over the last three years at Bristol, not counting a DNF. Y!-B4
- Greg Biffle… DNF (engine) in March, average finish of 8.5 in the previous eight races at Bristol: three top-five finishes, six top-10 finishes.
- Matt Kenseth… Started and finished 33rd in March. Previous seven years at Bristol (14 years): two wins, seven top-five finishes, 11 top-10 finishes.
- Juan Pablo Montoya… Career best ninth-place finish at Bristol in March. Finished 19th and 15th last year. Y!-B5
- Clint Bowyer… Hot streak: four top-10 finishes over the last five races this season. Started 31st, finished 13th in March. Snapped a streak of four straight top-10 finishes at Bristol- average finish of 5.3 in that span.
- Mark Martin… Risky play. Won the pole in March, finished sixth. Also finished sixth 3/08, his only top-10 finishes at Bristol since ’01. Won ’98, ’93.
- Dale Earnhardt Jr…. Strong value play. Finished 14th in March, 18th last year- previous 13 races: 12 top-11 finishes. Won in ’04. Y!-B6
- Ryan Newman… Top-10 finishes in five of the last seven races at Bristol. Average finish of 15.6 in that span. Y!-B7
- Kevin Harvick… Strong value play. Started and finished 30th in March. Average finish of 3.0 last year. Won in ’05.
- Jeff Burton… Risky play. Won 3/08, DNF (accident) 8/08. Finished eighth in March. Last 11 starts at Bristol: seven finishes in the top 12, four finishes of 34th or worse.
- Brian Vickers… Risky play. 10 career starts at Bristol: 26.0 average finish, zero top 10s. Y!-B8
- Marcos Ambrose… Started 13th, finished 10th in March, first career start at Bristol. Y!-C1
- David Reutimann… Finished a career-best 12th in June, average finish of 22.5 in ’08.
- Joey Logano… Started 23rd, finished 38th (engine) in March, first career start at Bristol. Average finish of 12.5 in two Nationwide races.
- Casey Mears… Weak value play. Started 37th, finished 24th in March. Average finish of 41.5 in ’08. Average finish of 18.5 from ’06-’07.
- Sam Hornish Jr…. Average finish of 32.3 in three career starts at Bristol. Zero finishes in the top 25. Y!-C2
- AJ Allmendinger… Finished a career-best 16th in March. Y!-C3
- David Ragan… Average finish of 19.3 in the last three Bristol races.
- Elliott Sadler… Won in ’01 but only two top-10 finishes since. Average finish of 23.6 in the last three Bristol races.
- Jamie McMurray… Since ’05: one top-10 finish, only two finishes of 12th or better. Average finish of 26.7 in that span (nine races).
- Martin Truex Jr…. Zero top-10 finishes in seven career starts, 25.4 career average finish.
- Aric Almirola… Long shot value play. Finished 35th in March. Average finish of 10.5 in ’08. Finished 10th in ’07 Nationwide race. Y!-C4
- Regan Smith… Long shot value play. Started fourth, finished 14th last year. Average finish of 21.7 in three career starts.
- David Stremme… Finished 19th in March. Average finish of 13.5 in ’07.
- Scott Speed… Started 11th, finished 28th in March, first career start at Bristol. Finished eighth in March Nationwide series.
- Max Papis… No career starts at Bristol.
- David Gilliland… Average finish of 22.3 in the last three Bristol races.
- Paul Menard… Average finish of 24.3 in the last three Bristol races.
- Bobby Labonte… Average finish of 27.6 in the last three Bristol races.
- Robby Gordon… Average finish of 28.0 in the last three Bristol races.
- Michael Waltrip… Average finish of 28.3 in the last three Bristol races, led laps in two.
- Reed Sorenson… Average finish of 30.0 in the last three Bristol races.
- John Andretti… Average finish of 35.0 in the last three Bristol races.
- Joe Nemechek… Average finish of 35.0 in the last three Bristol races. Zero top-10 finishes in 27 career starts.
- Dave Blaney… Average finish of 38.3 in the last three Bristol races.
- Tony Raines… Average finish of 23.0 in the last three Bristol races (’07-’08).
- Mike Skinner… Average finish of 34.0 in ’08 Bristol races.
- Terry Labonte… No starts at Bristol since ’06. Won in ’95, ’84.
- Mike Wallace… No starts at Bristol since ’05.
- Dexter Bean… No career starts at Bristol.
- Scott Wimmer… No starts at Bristol since ’06.