The NASCAR Cup Series travels to Richmond Raceway this week for some more short, flat track racing. The Fantasy Live picks are once again performing pretty well. The picks are currently beating 96.7% of the competition. They are well on their way to finishing in the top 99.9% for the 11th straight season, but this week I will have to save a few allocations with some drivers I would like to have in my lineup.
Here are my picks for the Toyota Owners 400…
* I feel pretty confident that Martin Truex Jr. will win this race so I will pick him as my winning driver, top driver from Toyota and Joe Gibbs Racing as my winning Team and Toyota as my winning manufacturer.
** I mapped out my allocations with each driver for each race. I do this each year to ensure I am using each driver at their best tracks. I will tweak it during the season if a driver gets on a hot-streak, but it gives me an idea of what allocations I have left with each driver.
Martin Truex Jr. (6): Martin Truex Jr. has a lot going for him Sunday. He will have momentum after his win last week at Martinsville. Truex will also start on the pole and have the No. 1 pit stall. He just won at Phoenix and that is the track closest in size and shape to Richmond so far on the schedule. Truex finished 2nd, 1st, 1st and 3rd, averaged 115 laps led and 17 Stages points in his last four races at Richmond. Truex should be the best driver in the field this week.
Joey Logano (6): Joey Logano finished runner up to Martin Truex Jr. at Phoenix in March and the No. 22 car should compete with the No. 19 for the win again Sunday. Logano has been reliable at Richmond. He has finished 5 of the last 7 races at the track in the top-5. That includes a trip to Victory Lane in 2017. Logano should score a lot of Stage points and finish in the top -5 Sunday.
Brad Keselowski (6): Brad Keselowsi starts deep in the field this week but I am not worried about it. There should be a competition caution early in the race and the No. 2 car will have the speed to quickly make it into the top 10. Keselowski led 192 laps, won Stage 2 and won the last race at Richmond. His average finishing position at Richmond in the last 8 races is 5.75. He should compete for a top-5 finish again Sunday.
Kyle Busch (10): I am not going to lie… Kyle Busch frustrates the hell out of me. I was listening to him on the radio at Martinsville and he said, “I am sick of getting blocked by slower cars. I am just going to drive through them for now on….” And that is exactly what he did, tearing up his car in the process. This dude has tons of talent, but about as much patients as a two-year-old. I have to play him this week though because Rowdy has finished 6th, 2nd, 8th, 1st, 1st and 9th in his last 6 races at Richmond. He is running the Truck Race and he usually runs well in the Cup Series when he gets a practice race the day before.
Christopher Bell (10): Christopher Bell is another Joe Gibbs Racing driver who should run well Sunday. Bell started 26th and finished 15th at Richmond while driving for Leavine Family Racing last year. The switch to JGR should result in a top-10 finish. Bell has three wins and 457 laps led at Richmond in the Xfinity Series. He knows how to get around this track if he has a fast car. The No. 20 car should be plenty fast enough Sunday.
Garage Driver Kyle Larson (7): I would like to save my allocation with Kyle Larson this week but I will have him as an insurance policy Sunday. Larson has had the fastest car this year and he ranks 3rd in Driver Rating and 2nd in average running position. He should score a lot of Stage points and be a threat to win the race.
Good luck and be sure to follow me on Twitter @MrFantasyNASCAR. I will send out a Tweet during the race to let you know if I plan to swap out one of my drivers for my Garage pick.
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