The NASCAR Cup Series will shuffle up the field and race again at Dover International Speedway Sunday. The drivers who finished in the top 20 will be inverted. The drivers who finished 21st -39th will start the race in the same position they finished Saturday. The teams are required to use the same car and are only allowed to make minor adjustments (Similar to what they can on a normal pit stop). Car who make more adjustments or change drivers will start in the back.
Here are my picks for Dover Part 2…
Martin Truex Jr. (Start): The No. 19 team has the Monster Mile figured out. Martin Truex Jr. has finished 2nd, 2nd and 1st in his last 3 races at Dover. Truex has only finished one race outside the top 4 since 2016 at this track. I am not worried about his starting position. I will use Truex and save my allocations with Denny Hamlin for some other tracks.
Denny Hamlin (Bench): I would start Denny Hamlin if I had four of more allocations with the No. 11 car but I only have three allocations left. I have Hamlin penciled in for three races so I will use Martin Truex Jr. today. Hamlin led almost every stat sheet for Saturday’s race. There is no reason to think Hamlin will not finish in the top 3 Sunday.
Group A Driver Rankings: 1) Martin Truex Jr. 2) Denny Hamlin 3) Kevin Harvick 4) Kyle Busch 5) Chase Elliott 6) Brad Keselowski 7) Joey Logano
Jimmie Johnson (Start): Jimmie Johnson is obviously points racing, but that is fine with me. The No. 48 team used a conservative strategy to ensure Johnson kept his track position and scored as many Stage points as possible. Johnson finished 8th in Stage 1, 7th in Stage 2 and finished 7th in the race. I will take similar results from Johnson Sunday.
Clint Bowyer (Start): Clint Bowyer said he loved racing at Dover and he looked like he was enjoying himself Saturday. Bowyer started 4th, scored 18 Stage points and finished 6th. Bowyer has finished four of his last five races at the Monster Mile in the top 10. The No. 14 car will have the speed to finish in the top 10 again Sunday.
Matt DiBenedetto (Bench): Matt DiBenedetto starts on the pole Sunday so he should at least score your team some bonus points for leading a lap. I also expect DiBenedetto to run the first Stage in the top 10 and score some Stage points. I trust Jimmie Johnson and Clint Bowyer more at Dover, but DiBenedetto should be a good pick too.
Austin Dillon (Bench): The No. 3 team proved Saturday that they are willing to gamble with pit strategy to steal some track position so Austin Dillon can score Stage points and have a good chance to finish in the top 10. Dillon started 32nd, led 49 laps, scored 8 Stage points and finished 15th. Dillon could score even more points from the 6th starting position Sunday.
Group B Driver Rankings: 1) Jimmie Johnson 2) Clint Bowyer 3) Ryan Blaney 4)Aric Almirola 5) Matt DiBenedetto 6) Austin Dillon 7) Alex Bowman 8) Kurt Busch 9) Erik Jones 10) Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
Cole Custer (Start): I like Tyler Reddick slightly more than Cole Custer Sunday but I am down to two allocations left with Reddick. Custer looked good Saturday and his teammates (Clint Bowyer and Kevin Harvick) had a lot of speed too. I expect the No. 41 car to come close to a top 10 finish Sunday.
Tyler Reddick (Start): I would use Tyler Reddick if you have four or more allocations left with the No. 8 car. He has really performed well on short, high-banked tracks in his career. He should be better Sunday now that he has more experience in the Cup Series car on the Monster Mile.
Group C Driver Rankings: 1) Tyler Reddick 2) Cole Custer 3) Matt Kenseth 4) Christopher Bell 5) Michael McDowell
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