The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series blows into Kansas Speedway for the 30th race of the 2014 season, the Hollywood Casino 400. Brian Brown took a look at past performances, season trends, and spoke with NASCAR contacts to predict how the field should finish on Sunday.
When: Sunday, October 5; 2:16 p.m. et.
Weather: Sunny with a high of 73; wind out of the WNW at 15 mph. There is a ZERO percent chance of precipitation on race day.
The Track: Kansas Speedway
Kansas is a 1.5 mile quad-oval. It has 15 degree banking in the corners and 10 degree banking in the tri-oval and five degree banking on the straight-aways.
Key to Race: ANOTHER WEEEKEND OF PENSKE AND HENDRICK?
Kansas is the eighth 1.5 mile oval we have seen so far this season. Penske Racing and Hendrick Motorsports have won all of them. Look for the trend to continue. The one non-Penske or Hendrick driver that could crash the party is Kevin Harvick. Harvick has been dominant everywhere lately except where it matters most…victory lane.
43 cars will attempt to qualify for 43 spots.
Fantasy Cheat Sheet:
No. 48 Jimmie Johnson: Johnson has been the top driver at Kansas since it opened. He has 14 top 10 finishes in 16 career starts at the track. He will be tough to beat.
No. 2 Brad Keselowski: Keselowski won at Kansas in the spring of 2011 and has been great on 1.5 mile ovals so far this season. He is a terrific option.
No. 22 Joey Logano: Logano has improved nearly every trip he makes to Kansas. He will be a threat to win on Sunday
No. 24 Jeff Gordon: Gordon added his third career win at Kansas earlier this season. He is a must use in all leagues.
No. 4 Kevin Harvick: Harvick won last fall’s race at Kansas and finished second this spring. He should back inside the top five this weekend.
6 to 10
No. 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.: Junior usually doesn’t do much at Kansas, but he was fantastic this spring. He shouldn’t be overlooked.
No. 5 Kasey Kahne: Kahne has finished in the top eight in five of the last six races at Kansas. He is an interesting pick this weekend.
No. 20 Matt Kenseth: Kenseth dominated last year’s spring race at Kansas and he has had one of the top cars at Kansas in nine of the last 10 races at the track. He will be someone to use in all leagues again this weekend.
No. 99 Carl Edwards: Edwards has top 10 finishes in nine of the last 13 races at his home-track. He is a great pick.
No. 15 Clint Bowyer: Bowyer usually brings fast cars to his home-track. He is a top pick this weekend.
11 to 20
No. 16 Greg Biffle: Biffle won the 2007 and 2010 races at Kansas. In addition, he has finished 13th or better in 11 of the last 14 races at the track. We like his chances.
No. 18 Kyle Busch: Kansas has never been one of Rowdy's better tracks. Look for him to take some unnecessary chances that will either help or hurt your fantasy team.
No. 41 Kurt Busch: Busch drove great at Kansas last season, but struggled this spring. There are better options in most leagues.
No. 11 Denny Hamlin: Hamlin usually brings a decent car to Kansas. He should finish inside the top 15.
No. 43 Aric Almirola: Almirola has driven very well at Kansas during his career. Use the No. 43 this weekend.
No. 42 Kyle Larson: Larson has been terrific lately. If you haven’t jumped on his bandwagon get on now before the last seat is spoken for.
No. 14 Tony Stewart: Stewart has had one of the top cars at Kansas the past nine years. That normally would be good enough to crack our top 10, but with the struggles he has had this season we bump him out of our top 15.
No. 78 Martin Truex Jr.: Truex Jr. has been awesome at Kansas in three of the past five visits. He is a great third driver in all leagues.
No. 27 Paul Menard: Menard has eight consecutive top 20 finishes at Kansas. He is worth using in most leagues.
No. 31 Ryan Newman: Newman’s past trips to Kansas define hit-or-miss. He has five top 11 finishes in 17 career starts and 12 finishes 15th or worse results at the track. We think he will be back outside the top 15 this visit.
21 to 30
No. 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr.: Ricky finished 11th at Kansas last spring and 22nd this spring. He should bring a similar setup this trip and another decent finish is expected.
No. 3 Austin Dillon: Dillon has finished 19th and 26th in his Cup trips to Kansas. He should finish right between the two places.
No. 55 Brian Vickers: Vickers cruised to a 14th place finish earlier this year at Kansas. He won’t be nearly as fast this weekend.
No. 9 Marcos Ambrose: Ambrose has averaged a 20th place finish at Kansas during his career. He will finish right around his average.
No. 10 Danica Patrick : Danica had one the best races of her Cup career at Kansas in May. This is a rare weekend we recommend her.
No. 47 A.J. Allmendinger: Dinger's has averaged a 23rd place finish at Kansas during his career. He should finish around his average this weekend.
No. 1 Jamie McMurray: McMurray had one of his best races of the 2013 campaign at Kansas last spring, but he struggled at the track earlier this year. We predict he will be a slow again this visit.
No. 13 Casey Mears: Mears has cracked the top 16 in five of the last 13 races at Kansas. He is a decent sleeper option this weekend.
No. 51 Justin Allgaier: Allgaier should improve on the 35th place finish he recorded at Kansas earlier this year.
No. 34 David Ragan: Ragan has cracked the top 20 in six of his 11 career starts at Kansas. He is worth using this weekend as a fifth driver in deep leagues.
No. 38 David Gilliland
No. 7 Michael Annett
No. 23 Alex Bowman
No. 36 Reed Sorenson
No. 26 Cole Whitt
No. 98 Josh Wise
No. 83 Travis Kvapil
No. 32 Joey Gase
No. 40 Landon Cassill
No. 66 Mike Wallace
No. 33 TBA
No. 95 Michael McDowell
No. 37 Mike Bliss
My Yahoo! Fantasy NASCAR Team for this Week:
A. Jeff Gordon
B. Carl Edwards