TOP FIVE DRIVERS

FORD EcoBoost 400 from HOMESTEAD-MIAMI

 

My #5 driver to watch is one of the four Chase drivers even after missing the first 11 races of the year, #18 Kyle Busch. Kyle has ten starts with only one Top 5, but Kyle is #3 hottest over the last six weeks and won’t let past performance predict future success. He didn’t look good statistically going into Phoenix and he finished 4th. Look for another unpredictably great performance from Kyle here in this very unpredictable season.

 

My #4 driver to watch has terrible stats here, #2 Brad Keselowski. Brad has seven starts here with only one Top 5, but that Top 5 was a 3rd place finish last year. He is out of the Chase but not don’t look for Brad to give up going for the front or even slowing down.

 

My #3 pick is in the battle for the championship, #78 Martin Truex Jr. He is #5 hottest over the last six weeks and #3 in average finish. He has 10 starts here with three Top 5’s. He has been pretty quiet during the Chase but it’s time for him to make some noise.

 

The number #2 driver won here in 2012, #24 Jeff Gordon. Jeff has 12 starts here, that win and six Top 5’s. He is #1 hottest over the last six weeks. He is the only Hendrick driver to win here but he is one of two who have used a motor from the HMS motor. The other former winner could maybe win here this year….

 

My #1 is the defending Champion of this race, #4 Kevin Harvick. Kevin has 12 starts at this track, that win and six Top 5 finishes. He is #1 in average finish and in his 12 starts 11 have been Top 10’s. He is #3 rated on tracks like this and #2 hottest over the last six races. Get the Buds cold!

TOP 30 DRIVERS

TOP 30 DRIVERS

FORD 400 HOMESTEAD-MIAMI SPEEDWAY

 

  1. KEVIN HARVICK #4
  2. JEFF GORDON #24
  3. MARTIN TRUEX #78
  4. BRAD KESELOWSKI #2
  5. KYLE BUSCH #18
  6. JOEY LOGANO #22
  7. DALE EARNHARDT JR #88
  8. RYAN NEWMAN #31
  9. CARL EDWARDS #19
  10. MATT KENSETH #20
  11. CLINT BOWYER #15
  12. DENNY HAMLIN #11
  13. KASEY KAHNE #5
  14. KURT BUSCH #41
  15. ARIC ALMIROLA #43
  16. PAUL MENARD #27
  17. JAMIE MCMURRAY #1
  18. JIMMIE JOHNSON #48
  19. KYLE LARSON #42
  20. AUSTIN DILLION #3
  21. DANICA PATRICK #10
  22. TONY STEWART #14
  23. SAM HORNISH #9
  24. GREG BIFFLE #16
  25. CASEY MEARS #13
  26. RICKY STENHOUSE #17
  27. JUSTIN ALLGAIER #51
  28. A. J. ALLMENDINGER #47
  29. DAVID RAGAN #34
  30. TREVOR BAYNE #6

 

 

Friday we break down the Top 5 drivers to watch in the Ford 400.

TOP TEN TEAMS

TOP 10 TEAMS POST PHOENIX

  1. TEAM PENSKE (LW #1)
  2. JOE GIBBS RACING (LW #4)
  3. FURNITURE ROW RACING(LW #3)
  4. HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS (LW #3)
  5. STEWART HAAS RACING (LW #5)
  6. RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING (LW #6)
  7. CHIP GANASSI RACING (LW #7)
  8. RICHARD PETTY MOTORSPORTS (LW #8)
  9. JTG RACING (LW #10)
  10. GERMAIN RACING (LW #Off)

 

 

 

For the sixth straight week we see Team Penske at #1. Joe Gibbs Racing move up two places to #2. Furniture Row Racing stays at #3. Hendrick Motorsports slip back two spots to #4. Stewart Haas Racing stay at #5. Richard Childress Racing, Chip Ganassi Racing and Richard Petty Motorsports remain in place from last week. JTG Racing move up a spot and Germain Racing returns to the Top 10. Roush Fenway Racing drop off the Top 10.

Thursday look for our Top30 drivers at Miami-Homestead Speedway.

TOP TEN DRIVERS by TRACK TYPE

TOP 10: DOWNFORCE TRACKS

  1. MATT KENSETH #20
  2. JOEY LOGANO #22
  3. KEVIN HARVICK #4
  4. BRAD KESELOWSKI #2
  5. JEFF GORDON #24
  6. RYAN NEWMAN #31
  7. PAUL MENARD #27
  8. CARL EDWARDS #19
  9. MARTIN TRUEX #78
  10. KURT BUSCH #41

Top 10 on Downforce tracks, Wednesday look for out Top 10 Teams and Thursday look for our Top 30 for Sunday’s FORD EcoBoost 400 from Homestead-Miami Speedway.

RACE PREVIEW

hns14

MIAMI HOMESTEAD FORD ECOBOOST 400

HOMESTEAD-MIAMI SPEEDWAY

November 22, 3PM EST NBC TV

1 Mile 20 Degrees of Banking

It doesn’t seem that long ago that 49 drivers showed up at Daytona in February to get into the Daytona 500. Six drivers were eliminated in the duel races. Forty-three started the race hoping not only to win the race but kick off the 2015 season in the best way possible. Joey Logano won and left 42 drivers thinking we’ll try again next race. Fifteen different drivers found Victory Lane from five different teams this season. Nine races ago sixteen drivers made it into the Chase for the Cup –  twelve drivers have been slowly eliminated leaving four to decide the 2015 Sprint Cup Champion. Now after thirty-five races, it all comes down to one race, all points all been thrown out. It is all about just this one race.  Jeff Gordon, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, and Martin Truex Jr. will all battle for the Championship. This track was reconfigured just before the 2003 season. Since that time only four owners have found Victory Lane.  Greg Biffle has won here three times and his team Roush Fenway Racing have six total victories, Joe Gibbs Racing has three wins, Stewart Haas Racing twice and Hendrick Motorsports once. Hendrick Motorsports got their only win with Jeff Gordon in 2012, Kevin Harvick got a win here last year in a Stewart Haas car powered by the Hendrick motor shop. Neither Martin Truex nor Kyle Busch has won here. The highest finisher will win the Championship and a win will put you in. Who will snag the Championship?  We’ll know on Sunday.

Tuesday look for our Top 10 drivers on Downforce tracks going into Homestead-Miami.

TOP FIVE DRIVERS

QUICKEN LOANS 500 from PHOENIX

My #5 driver is starting to be pretty good here, #22 Joey Logano. Joey only has one Top 5 since they reconfigured the track. He has eight starts and one Top 5, but his last four starts were all Top 10’s and he has never had more on the line than he does this week. He must win and if he doesn’t I think he’ll get pretty close.    

 

My #4 pick this week is the driver who finished 43rd here in the spring, #88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.  Jr. has three Top 5’s since the track was redone. Three outta eight, not bad. He is my #2 flat track driver and sits #6 hottest over the last six races. 

 

My #3 pick is a former winner, #24 Jeff Gordon. Jeff last won here in spring 2011, the last race before they repaved the track. He is the only guy certain to make the final four in Miami, so he is looking to maintain momentum. No place better than here where he comes in #1 hottest and is ranked #5 on the flat tracks. In the eight races since they made some changes he has two Top 5’s. 

 

The #2 driver to watch is an outstanding flat track driver, #2 Brad Keselowski. Brad is my #1 flat track driver and comes in here #7 hottest over the last six weeks. Since they redid the track he has four Top 5’s in the eight races. He finished 6th here earlier in the year trying to beat Kevin Harvick. To keep his championship hopes alive he needs to beat my #1 pick …

 

The closer, #4 Kevin Harvick. Kevin is the defending champion of this race and won here earlier in the year. He has finished in first or second in six of the eight races run since the track reconfiguration. He has 27 starts, seven wins and ten Top 5’s or eight starts, five wins and six Top 5’s since the new paving. He is second hottest over the last six races and needs a second place finish to clinch a playoff spot. 

 

Monday look for our preview of the Ford 400 from Miami-Homestead.

TOP 30 DRIVERS

QUICKEN LOANS 500:PHOENIX

  1. KEVIN HARVICK #4
  2. BRAD KESELOWSKI #2
  3. JEFF GORDON #24
  4. DALE EARNHARDT JR #88
  5. JOEY LOGANO #22
  6. CARL EDWARDS #19
  7. KYLE BUSCH #18
  8. KASEY KAHNE #5
  9. RYAN NEWMAN #31
  10. JIMMIE JOHNSON #48
  11. DENNY HAMLIN #11
  12. KURT BUSCH #41
  13. JAMIE MCMURRAY #1
  14. KYLE LARSON #42
  15. GREG BIFFLE #16
  16. MARTIN TRUEX #78
  17. ARIC ALMIROLA #43
  18. PAUL MENARD #27
  19. RICKY STENHOUSE #17
  20. A. J. ALLMEDINGER #47
  21. CLINT BOWYER #15
  22. TONY STEWART #14
  23. AUSTIN DILLION #3
  24. CASEY MEARS #13
  25. DANICA PATRICK #10
  26. TREVOR BAYNE #6
  27. SAM HORNISH #9
  28. DAVID RAGAN #55
  29. ERIC JONES #20
  30. JUSTIN ALLGAIER #51

Top 30 drivers, Friday we break down the Top 5 drivers to watch.

TOP TEN TEAMS

TOP 10 TEAMS POST TEXAS

  1. TEAM PENSKE (LW #1)
  2. HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS (LW #4)
  3. FURNITURE ROW RACING (LW #3)
  4. JOE GIBBS RACING (LW #2)
  5. STEWART HAAS RACING (LW #5)
  6. RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING (LW #6)
  7. CHIP GANASSI RACING (LW #7)
  8. RICHARD PETTY MOTORSPORTS (LW #8)
  9. ROUSH FENWAY RACING(LW #9)
  10. JTG RACING (LW #Off)

For the fifth straight week we see Team Penske at #1. They would rather have gotten a win. Hendrick Motorsports gets their second straight win and move up two places to #2. Furniture Row Racing stays at #3. Joe Gibbs Racing drop two places to #4. Stewart Haas Racing, Richard Childress Racing, Chip Ganassi Racing, Richard Petty Motorsports and Roush Fenway all remain in place. JTG Racing returns to the Top 10 and Germain Racing drop off.

These are the Top 10 Teams, Thursday look for our Top 30 drivers at Phoenix.

TOP TEN DRIVERS by TRACK TYPE

TOP 10: FLAT TRACKS

  1. BRAD KESELOWSKI #2
  2. DALE EARMHARDT JR. #88
  3. KEVIN HARVICK #4
  4. MATT KENSETH #20
  5. JEFF GORDON #24
  6. KYLE BUSCH #18
  7. KYLE LARSON #42
  8. JIMMIE JOHNSON #48
  9. JOEY LOGANO #22
  10. RYAN NEWMAN #31

Top 10 drivers on Flat tracks, Wednesday look for our Top 10 teams and Thursday look for our Top 30 rankings for Sunday’s Quicken Loans 500 from Phoenix Int Speedway.

RACE PREVIEW

ph 15.2

QUICKEN LOANS 500

PHOENIX INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY
November 15th, 2:00PM Charlotte Time
NBC TV
1 Mile Turn 1&2 12 Degrees of Banking, Turn 3&4 10 Degrees of Banking

What a place to help decide the Sprint Cup Championship, a 1 mile flat track:  a track where every turn is slightly different. There is no such thing as “get your car right and cruise around.” Most drivers have a good set-up for turns 1 & 2 or for turns 3 & 4. Some try to get a compromise somewhere in between, and some drivers are simply trying to find any set-up that gets them fast and keeps them off the wall. No matter what your strategy is, this track can be very, very tough. Rookies typically struggle here. And to add to the challenge, this race will help eliminate four of the eight finalists for the Championship. #24 Jeff Gordon is locked in, but the other seven drivers will battle for the last three Championship spots. #18 Kyle Busch, #4 Kevin Harvick and #78 Martin Truex are in the top three positions behind locked-in Jeff Gordon.  #19 Carl Edwards, #2 Brad Keselowski, #41 Kurt Busch and #22 Joey Logano are all battling to get into those three spots. Joey’s only way to stay in the Chase is to win – a win gets any of them in to the Sprint Cup Championship at Homestead-Miami next week. Kevin Harvick who has won here the last four straight races and five of the last six races appears to have the inside track on that win. In the last ten years Hendrick Motorsports has won 40% of the races here and cars built by the Hendrick Motor shop have won 60% of the races. Advantage Jeff Gordon and Kevin Harvick. Jeff Gordon will compete next week for the Championship, who will compete against him? We’ll find out of Sunday.

Tuesday look for our Top 10 flat track drivers in advance of the Quicken Loans 500 from Phoenix Int’l Raceway.