The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series competes at Michigan Sunday. This is the 23rd race of the season and there are 13 races remaining after today’s race. It is very important to save allocations whenever you can. You need to use your allocations wisely but the cream usually rises to the top at Michigan. I plan to play my top drivers this week. Track history means a lot at Michigan so the drivers who ran well here in the past should finish up front Sunday.
Here are my picks for Pure Michigan 400…
Martin Truex Jr. (5): NASCAR told the teams this week that they will be taking cars from each manufacturer to the research and development department to make sure the cars are equal before the Playoffs begin. NASCAR did not say which race they will take the cars from, but the word in the garage is that the Toyota’s dialed it back this week because they do not want NASCAR to find out the advantage they had the last 6 weeks. I wish I knew this information before rosters locked Friday. I still think Cole Pearn will get the No. 78 car to the front. They have been fast all season. Brad Keselowski is the best play in Group A because the pole sitter has won 6 of last 9 races at Michigan and he was fast in practice.
Group A Rankings: 1) Brad Keselowski, 2) Martin Truex Jr., 3) Joey Logano, 4) Matt Kenseth, 5) Kevin Harvick, 6) Kyle Busch, 7) Denny Hamlin, 8) Dale Earnhardt Jr., 9) Jimmie Johnson
Kyle Larson (3): This is the race you have been saving your allocations with the No. 42 car for. After watching practice there is nothing to suggest Larson will not win his third race in a row at Michigan. He starts 9th but he won this race for the 12th starting position last year. Larson is the best choices in Group B so do not be afraid to use one of your last allocations with him.
Chase Elliott (6): Elliott has finished 2nd, 2nd and 2nd in his three races at Michigan. He looks to have a top-five car again this week. Elliott qualified 5th and had a top five car in practice. I would not be surprised if Elliott won his first MENCS race this week.
Group B Rankings: 1) Kyle Larson, 2) Chase Elliott, 3) Ryan Blaney, 4) Jamie McMurray, 5) Kurt Busch, 6) Clint Bowyer, 7) Kasey Kahne, 8) Austin Dillon, 9) Ricky Stenhouse Jr., 10) Ryan Newman, 11) Trevor Bayne, 12) Danica Patrick, 13) Chris Buescher, 14) Aric Almirola, 15) Paul Menard, 16) AJ Allmendinger
Daniel Suarez (4): The No. 19 team only qualified 15th but they were one of the only teams to work in race setup in Friday’s practice. The team said they expect long green flag runs Sunday so they want a car that does not slow down on worn out tires. That is what they have. I expect Suarez to slowly move into the top 10 Sunday.
Group C Rankings: 1) Daniel Suarez, 2) Erik Jones, 3) Michael McDowell, 4) Ty Dillon, 5) David Ragan
Good luck this week!
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