Early Week Driver Rankings for Michigan

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The NASCAR Cup Series will travel to Michigan International Speedway this week for the Firekeepers Casino 400. This is race No. 23 on the Cup Series schedule. That means there are only four races left in the regular season. The other three races include two road course tracks (Indianapolis and Watkins Glen) and a Superspeedway (Daytona). Those races tend to be unpredictable, so the drivers better get as many points as they can this week if they want a chance to race for the 2023 championship. The Firekeepers Casino 400 can be seen Sunday at 2:30 p.m. ET on USA Network (streamed on NBC Sports App).

The race Sunday will be only the second race on a two-mile speedway in 2023. That last race was way back in February at Auto Club Speedway. A lot has happened since then, so it will be interesting to see how the race this week plays out.

Momentum was everything at Michigan last year in the Gen-7 car. The Drivers had to keep their momentum going in order to maintain their track position or to pass cars that lost their momentum. Once a drive lost his momentum, he fell deep into the pack and have to work his way back to the front. This type of racing is unpredictable, but it is not as bad as Superspeedway racing.

I used the data from the race last year at Michigan, the race this year at Auto Club and the data from the races on the 1.5-mile tracks (Las Vegas, Kansas and Charlotte) for the Driver Rankings. The drivers who ran well in those races should be up front Sunday.

Here are my early week driver rankings for the Firekeepers Casino 400.

DRIVER
1. Denny Hamlin
2. Kevin Harvick
3. William Byron
4. Martin Truex Jr.
5. Ryan Blaney
6. Kyle Larson
7. Bubba Wallace
8. Joey Logano
9. Chase Elliott
10. Kyle Busch
11. Ross Chastain
12. Christopher Bell
13. Alex Bowman
14. Brad Keselowski
15. Ty Gibbs
16. Tyler Reddick
17. Chris Buescher
18. Erik Jones
19. Daniel Suarez
20. Michael McDowell
21. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
22. Austin Dillon
23. Chase Briscoe
24. AJ Allmendinger
25. Austin Cindric
26. Aric Almirola
27. Justin Haley
28. Ryan Preece
29. Corey LaJoie
30. Todd Gilliland
31. Harrison Burton
32. Cole Custer
33. Noah Gragson
34. Ty Dillon
35. Austin Hill
36. J.J. Yeley
37. Josh Bilicki

 

Be sure to check back Sunday Morning for the updated Driver Rankings for the race at Atlanta.

 

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