Once again a restrictor plate track doomed me as a couple of my drivers were involved in the early race wreck at Daytona. Congratulations to Michael McDowell, who picked up his first ever win and is now qualified for this years playoffs. All in all a pretty disappointing weekend with the rain delay and the race not ending until late at night for most of us fans.
O’REILLY AUTO PARTS 253 AT DAYTONA
This week the series stays right in Daytona, but they will be running on the road course here this time. We shouldn’t see crashes with a third of the field involved this week, but the road course races can be tough on equipment and we will see quite a few cars getting moved by someone getting into them as they battle on the turns.
Chase Elliott: Last year’s champion is my pick to win this week’s race. He won here last August and has won his last four road course starts. Hard to go against someone who has stats like that, although it won’t be a cake walk for him. There are other drivers who want to end his streak and are capable of doing so.
Denny Hamlin: Denny finished second to Chase here last season and is one of the more consistent road course racers on the circuit. He has seven top five finishes in his last twelve starts on this type of track and showed last year that he will be a contender each and every week and this week will be no different.
Martin Truex Jr.: After getting involved in the early race wreck at Daytona last week, I’m sure this team is looking forward to this week’s race. Martin has two wins and two runner-up finishes in his last nine road course races. He has also finished in the top ten in eight of those nine races which shows that he has a handle on this type of racing and can stay out of trouble on the track.
Ryan Blaney: Ryan has shown that he knows how to race on this type of track also. He has finished in the top five in four of his last six road course starts including a win at Charlotte a few years ago. I think he just keeps getting better and better each week and should have another good run coming up this weekend.
Kyle Busch: After a very disappointing year for Kyle last season I’m sure he’s looking forward to this season and turning his fortunes around. He won the Busch Clash a couple of weeks ago on this track, so he should have a great handling car once again this weekend. Even though he hasn’t finished in the top ten in his last four road course starts he did have a run before that of nine top ten finishes in ten races.
Kurt Busch: Kurt is another driver who has run consistently well on this type of track throughout his career. Like Kyle, Kurt hasn’t quite had the results we would expect of him lately. He did finish fourth at Charlotte last October and hasn’t finished outside of the top twenty in his last nineteen starts which include thirteen top ten finishes in those races.
Kevin Harvick: No top ten finishes in the two road course races last season for Kevin, but once again like some of the other drivers, Kevin had seven top ten finishes in his eight starts before that including a win at Sonoma back in 2017. We have seen that he is one of the most consistent drivers on all types of track week in and week out.
Erik Jones: Erik is my dark horse this week as he usually runs well on this type of track, but now that he is on a new team this year we’ll have to see how they gel together. This is one of those races where there are only a couple of pit stops, so there isn’t a lot of chances to adjust the handling of the car. If the equipment doesn’t break I think he has a good run this week.
Alex Bowman: Alex has quietly made a name for himself on the road course tracks. Though still looking for his first road course win, Alex did finish second at Charlotte a couple of years ago and has never finished outside the top fifteen in his nine starts since joining Hendrick Motor Sports.
DRIVER GROUP GAME FANTASY NASCAR PICKS FOR DAYTONA ROAD COURSE
Driver Group Game Group A
- Chase Elliott
Driver Group Game Group B
- Kyle Busch
- Alex Bowman
Driver Group Game Group C
- Michael McDowell
MY TOP-5 OVERALL AT DAYTONA ROAD COURSE
- Chase Elliott
- Denny Hamlin
- Martin Truex Jr.
- Ryan Blaney
- Kyle Busch
Dark Horse: Erik Jones
Stay Away From: Christopher Bell
Big 18: Chase Elliott