Driver Group Game Fantasy NASCAR

2018 Homestead-Miami Speedway, Ford EcoBoost 400

We’re all set for championship weekend unless there is some major points penalty handed out by NASCAR this week. The ‘Big Three’ will be joined by Joey Logano in a best finisher take all race. There are two Ford’s and two Toyota’s among these drivers and four different teams being represented.

I want to thank all of you loyal readers for following me once again this year and as always, I hope I helped some of you a bit in your leagues and made watching the races a little more exciting. I will caution you that the drivers I think will finish in the top five this week might not be on my DGG roster because I have used up all of their starts. I think the best thing to do this week is use the best drivers you have left and let the chips fall where they may.


This is championship week for NASCAR and all three series will crown their champions at the Homestead-Miami Speedway. This is a mile and a half track with progressive banking in the corners and I think the Big Three are your top three favorites here. The question is who will stay mistake free, mechanical issue free, and make the right calls during the race to be crowned the champion of the 2018 season.

Kevin Harvick: I am going to pick Kevin Harvick to win the race and the championship this year. He has been fast all season long and is the driver with the most wins on this type of track this year. I just think that the Ford’s have shown their speed all year and Kevin is the better driver between him and Joey Logano who are the two drivers with Ford’s in the championship group.

Kyle Busch: I think Kyle will finish right behind Kevin and make it a tight race right to the end. In my opinion he is the best driver out of the championship four, but I just don’t think he will have quite the speed or handling that Kevin has had all season. He is going to do everything he can to stay close and give Kevin a run for his money, but in the end I just don’t think he will have enough car.

Martin Truex Jr.: I think Martin sticks with the top two for most of the race and could pull off the second championship of his career if the other two falter somewhere along the way. Like I said, all of these drivers have to stay mistake free on pit road to stay in contention. They can’t afford penalties or loose wheels. A mistake like this is disaster when you have to beat the best in a one race playoff.

Joey Logano: Let’s not count Joey out though. For one thing, he is in a Ford which as I have said before have shown the most speed all year. He won two races this year. His teammates have each won multiple races this season and on this type of track. The thing I worry about with him and his team is that they often seem to lose the handling on their car as races progress and he also doesn’t have friends all over the track.

Kyle Larson: Kyle has led more laps than any other driver in his last two starts at Homestead. He looked really good last week at Phoenix and could pull off his first win of the season as he likes to run the high line and this is one of those tracks where it can really pay dividends. Definitely worth a shot if you are trying to make up some ground in your league or don’t have any of the Big Three left to run.

Chase Elliott: Chase looked like he had a shot at picking up the win at Phoenix and making the championship race for a while last week as he had the fastest car on the track as he made his way to the front. However, that was not to be as an ill timed caution moved him back in the field and then he got caught up in a wreck late in the race that took him out of contention. He did finish fifth in this race last year and has been good at the end of this season.

Denny Hamlin: Denny has qualified well in some races this year and then never really had the handling on his car that he needed to stay up front. He sat on the pole here in two of his last three starts and finished ninth in each of his last two starts here. I just don’t have faith in him being someone I want to start this week and he might get a little payback from Kurt Busch this week.

Austin Dillon: Austin has been running very well towards the end of this season and is someone you can have on your roster if you have used up some of the better drivers. He has finished in the top fifteen in each of his last three starts here. He might not have the speed he needs to run up front, but he could pull off a top ten finish this week.

Erik Jones: This is another driver who has really been running well since winning a race at Talladega earlier this year. This is also the kind of track where he has really shown a lot of poise and could pull off another win if everything falls into place for him again this week. He has a ton of potential and is going to be one of the stars in this series sooner rather than later.

Ryan Blaney: Ryan has shown a lot of speed all year and he has also shown that he can run towards the front no matter what kind of track he is racing on. This is the type of track where he can be at his best. He seems to have a little problem with patience once in a while, but this is one of those tracks with multiple grooves, so he should be able to move to different grooves to make passes this weekend.


Driver Group Game Group A

  • Martin Truex Jr.
  • Kyle Larson

Driver Group Game Group B

  • Chase Elliott
  • Ryan Blaney
  • Aric Almirola
  • Erik Jones

Driver Group Game Group C

  • Chris Buescher
  • Michael McDowell


  1. Kevin Harvick
  2. Kyle Busch
  3. Martin Truex Jr.
  4. Kyle Larson
  5. Chase Elliott

Dark Horse: Austin Dillon

Stay Away From: Clint Bowyer

Big 18: Alex Bowman

Driver Group Game Fantasy NASCAR

2018 ISM Raceway, Can-Am 500

Congratulations to Kevin Harvick who won his eighth race of the season and snared a spot in the championship race coming up in two weeks. Right now the pressure is off both him and Joey Logano while the other six drivers in the playoffs are all going to be fighting for those final two spots. Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. hold those spots right now, but if one of the other four drivers can win next week at Phoenix one of them will be knocked out. Even an early wreck or mechanical problem will shake up the final four.

CAN-AM 500

As I already mentioned, this week the drivers head to the ISM Raceway in Phoenix, AZ for the running of the Can-Am 500. This is a one-mile fairly flat tri-oval race track. This should be a very interesting race where stage points are going to be huge for the playoff drivers not locked into the championship race and some need to win to move on because they won’t be able to make up enough points to get in that way. That means you might see a few more bumpers getting put to the cars in front of drivers who are desperate to get that win this week.

Kevin Harvick: It’s hard to pick against Kevin at Phoenix as he has finished in the top six in twelve of his last thirteen starts at this track and that includes seven wins. He won here this spring and would love to keep the momentum on his side going to Homestead. However, would he allow one of his teammates to win at the end of the race to ensure they are in the championship race with him and that would also knock out one of the other Big 3?

Kyle Busch: Kyle sits third in the standings with a twenty-eight point cushion over the fifth place driver, but he is only three points ahead of Martin Truex Jr. If one of the other four drivers can win this race he needs to stay ahead of Martin to secure a spot in the championship race. I think he should be able to do that as he has finished in the top five in five of his last six starts here including a runner-up finish this spring.

Martin Truex Jr.: Martin is still looking for his first win here in his career and would love to get it this weekend and not have to worry about points racing. He finished third in this race last year and fifth in the spring race this year. He has looked good on the flat tracks this season and should make the championship race as long as one of the other four playoff drivers doesn’t win this weekend.

Chase Elliott: Chase is thrity-nine points out of the top four and almost certainly needs to win this week if he wants to make the championship race. The good news is he has looked good on the flatter tracks this season and finished second in this race last year. He also finished third in the spring race this year and could pull off a small upset this weekend.

Kurt Busch: Kurt is twenty-five points out of the top four in the standings and he almost needs to win this week also. The bad news is that he hasn’t won here since the spring race way back in the 2005 season. He does have six top ten finishes in his last eight starts here though and that should give him a little confidence going into the weekend. I know he won’t be afraid to move people out of his way to try to get to the front of the field this weekend.

Clint Bowyer: Clint absolutely needs to win this week if he wants to make the championship. That is going to be a tall task for a driver who only has one top ten finish in his last ten starts at Phoenix. Clint does run very well on most other flat tracks though, so it isn’t out of the realm of possibilities that he can go to victory lane this weekend. He needs to have a flawless weekend to do that though.

Aric Almirola: Aric is fifty-seven points out of the top four and will most likely need to win this weekend if he is to go for a championship this year. He doesn’t qualify well here and with the track being so short and hard to pass on that can be a problem. He has finished in the top ten in his last two races here though. I just don’t see him winning the race this weekend.

Denny Hamlin: Denny hasn’t had the season he was hoping for and every week I think he might do something I get disappointed. He has five top ten finishes in his last six races and ran well at Martinsville a few weeks ago. This track is twice that length, but the banking is somewhat similar. Most people will have Harvick on their roster this week and Denny might be someone to take a flyer on if you need to make up some ground in your league.

Eric Jones: Eric had a great run at Texas coming away with a fourth place finish. He has finished in the top ten in his last three Phoenix races and has only run here four times. I think he is worth having on your roster this week and if he qualifies and practices well you can start him once again.

Joey Logano: Joey won this race two years ago and always seems to qualify well here. The problem for him here lately has been that they don’t seem to make the correct adjustments to the car as the race progresses. If the temperatures are warm there will be a lot of adjustments needed to keep up with the changing track conditions and I’m not sure if they will make the right calls.


Driver Group Game Group A

  • Kevin Harvick
  • Kyle Busch

Driver Group Game Group B

  • Chase Elliott
  • Eric Jones
  • Kurt Busch
  • Aric Almirola

Driver Group Game Group C

  • William Byron
  • Chris Buescher


  1. Kevin Harvick
  2. Kyle Busch
  3. Chase Elliott
  4. Eric Jones
  5. Kurt Busch

Dark Horse: Eric Jones

Stay Away From: Jimmie Johnson

Big 18: Kevin Harvick