The NASCAR Sprint Cup makes its next stop at Bristol Motor Speedway's half-mile coliseum for the Food City 500. We looked at past performances, season trends, and spoke to team contacts to give the internet’s best prediction of how the field should finish.
When: Sunday, March 16; 1:13 p.m./et.
Weather: Showers with a high around 53; wind out of the N at 8 mph. Chance of precipitation is 40%.
The Track: Bristol Motor Speedway
Bristol Motor Speedway is a half-mile oval with high-banking the entire way around. The corners are banked 36 degrees with 16 degree banking on the straight-aways. This is a track where very few drivers have been able to dominate. Kasey Kahne, Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch, Kurt Busch, and Jeff Gordon have all had decent success at the track, but that status can change with one nudge to the left-rear bumper.
Key to Race: DON'T BRING YOUR BEST CAR
The Bullring inBristolhas been described a flying an airplane in a gymnasium. There will be no cars that escape Sunday's race without at least a little sheet metal damage. Sunday’s race is one of the most entertaining races on the circuit for fans and most frustrating for drivers. Expect tempers to flare as the cars bump and bang. The driver that wins the race will be the one with the best set of pit stops and the most luck.
46 cars will attempt to qualify for 43 spots.
Fantasy Cheat Sheet:
No. 2 Brad Keselowski: Keselowski has won two of the past five races at Bristol. There is no reason to think he can’t make it three-out-of-six.
No. 18 Kyle Busch: Rowdy has had one of the top cars in 17 of the past 18 races at Bristol. There is a good chance he can take the checkers again on Sunday.
No. 20 Matt Kenseth: Kenseth has 18 top 10 finishes and has led 953 laps during the last 16 races at the track including winning last year’s Night Race. He is a great option on Sunday.
No. 5 Kasey Kahne: Kahne won at Bristol last spring. He is a great choice again this weekend.
No. 48 Jimmie Johnson: Johnson had one of the fastest cars in the past nine Bristol races and won the 2010 spring race. He will be fast again.
6 to 10
No. 11 Denny Hamlin: Hamlin won the 2012 Night Race at Bristol and has led 492 laps in the past 14 races at the track. He should have the No. 11 inside the top 10 when the dust settles.
No. 24 Jeff Gordon: Gordon has five wins and has led nearly 2,500 laps at Bristol during his career. He should be in the top 10 once again on Sunday.
No. 99 Carl Edwards: Edwards won two of the last 14 races at Bristol and has placed in the top 16 in 11 of the past 15 races at the track. He is a great pick.
No. 4 Kevin Harvick: Harvick has 12 top 10 finishes in 26 career races at Bristol. He is once again a driver to consider.
No. 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.: Junior has been decent at Bristol in his career. In his last 24 starts at the track he has finished 17th or better in 23 of them. Look for him to finish just inside the top 10.
11 to 20
No. 41 Kurt Busch: Busch has won five races at Bristol during his career. He is a very nice option.
No. 16 Greg Biffle: Biffle has 12 top 10 finishes in 22 career starts at Bristol. He is a very good fantasy option.
No. 15 Clint Bowyer: Bowyer has cracked the top 10 in eight of his last 14 starts at Bristol. He should notch another top finish on Sunday.
No. 56 Martin Truex Jr.: The success Truex Jr. had at Bristol while in the Nationwide Series has finally carried over with four top 12 finishes in the past five races. He should flirt with the top 15 again this visit to the track.
No. 14 Tony Stewart: “Smoke” has averaged an 18th place finish at Bristol the past nine years. He should finish a little better than his average.
No. 31 Ryan Newman: Newman’s lack of consistency at Bristol bumps him out of our top 15.
No. 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr.: Stenhouse struggled as a rookie at Bristol. He should be better this trip to the track.
No. 9 Marcos Ambrose: Ambrose has averaged a 16th place finish at Bristol during his career. The Terrific Tasmanian is worth using in all leagues this visit to the Volunteer State.
No. 22 Joey Logano: Logano finally appeared to solve Bristol’s riddle his last visit to the track. He is a fair choice.
No. 55 Brian Vickers: Vickers was awesome at Bristol last fall. He is a decent option to sneak onto your roster.
21 to 30
No. 27 Paul Menard: Menard has cracked the top 25 in 11 of the last 13 Bristol races. He should do it again this weekend.
No. 3 Austin Dillon: Rookies usually struggle at Bristol. We don’t expect Dillon will buck the trend.
No. 43 Aric Almirola: Bristol isn’t one of better tracks. Avoid him this weekend.
No. 1 Jamie McMurray: McMurray has finished outside the top 20 in nine of the last 18 races at Bristol. We don't recommend using him as much more than a fourth or fifth fantasy driver this weekend.
No. 13 Casey Mears: Mears won’t do enough in the No. 13 car to warrant using in most fantasy leagues.
No. 10 Danica Patrick: We have very little faith in Danica at this difficult track.
No. 42 Kyle Larson: We always steer away from rookies at Bristol.
No. 34 David Ragan: Ragan was great at Bristol during last year’s Night Race. He is only a deep fantasy option this weekend.
No. 35 David Reutimann: Rudy usually drives well at Bristol.
No. 77 Dave Blaney: Blaney surprised with a solid at Bristol last fall.
No. 36 Reed Sorenson
No. 40 Landon Cassill
No. 38 David Gilliland
No. 47 A.J. Allmendinger
No. 51 Justin Allgaier
No. 83 Ryan Truex
No. 32 Travis Kvapil
No. 95 Michael McDowell
No. 7 Michael Annett
No. 23 Alex Bowman
No. 26 Cole Whitt
No. 30 Parker Kligerman
No. 33 Timmy Hill
No. 44 J.J. Yeley
No. 66 Joe Nemechek
No. 98 Josh Wise
My Yahoo! Fantasy NASCAR Team for this Week:
A. Matt Kenseth