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Statistically Speaking

6. Brad Keselowski

by Dan Beaver
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

When Matt Kenseth intentionally wrecked Joey Logano at Martinsville Speedway in the Goody's Headache Relief Shot 500, it became a defining moment for those two drivers. Kenseth was suspended for a couple of races and Logano could not recover to contend for the championship, but if a fantasy player backs the tape up they will find there were other casualties in that event.

With time winding down, drivers got a little overanxious on a lap-436 restart and a chain reaction crash damaged the cars of Kenseth, Kurt Busch, and Brad Keselowski. Two others were minimally damaged and would challenge for the win; they were those of Logano and the eventual winner Jeff Gordon.

That accident not only effectively eliminated Keselowski from the final round, it was the first time in 16 races that he finished worse than 16th and only the third time he failed to score a top-10. Depending on which game a player was in, Kez was probably one of the best values every weekend because of his consistency. In games where he was overpriced, only four top-fives in that same span of races made him a lesser value.

Keselowski may have been one of the smarter drivers in the field most weeks, however. In contrast to his often brash style, he rarely seemed to ask more from the car than it was capable of giving. When he and the car were in top form, they challenged for wins. Only once was Keselowski able to get to Victory Lane and that came early in the season at Auto Club, but five second-place finishes, another third, and two more top-fives rewarded players handsomely when they had him activated at the right time.

Still consistency was Keselowski’s hallmark. He scored top-10s in nearly 70 percent of his starts and rarely cost players many points with only five results outside of the top 20. Penske Racing is on the verge of making NASCAR into a four-organization contest along with Joe Gibbs, Stewart-Haas Racing, and Hendrick Motorsports vying for the top spot and those are the teams players should concentrate on in 2016.

If Kez keeps his balance while drivers like Logano, Kenseth, and Kevin Harvick steal the headlines, he could be considered a dark horse in many situations. Unrestricted, intermediate speedways will always be the place with the most volatility and the No. 2 Ford could earn maximum points on them a half-dozen times. 

 

Track

Career Avg.
Finish

Career Avg.
Start

Best
Finish

Career
Attempts

Race 1

Race 2

Kentucky Speedway

9.60

5.00

1

5

6

 

Chicagoland Speedway

10.29

15.43

1

7

8

 

New Hampshire Motor Speedway

10.38

11.69

1

13

2

12

Watkins Glen International

11.33

12.67

2

6

7

 

Kansas Speedway *

12.25

12.67

1

12

7

9

Darlington Raceway

12.57

13.86

2

7

2

 

Pocono Raceway

12.75

13.33

1

12

17

2

Indianapolis Motor Speedway

13.33

14.00

9

6

10

 

Homestead - Miami Speedway

13.50

12.50

3

8

3

 

Phoenix International Raceway*

13.54

14.69

3

13

6

9

Michigan International Speedway *

13.69

16.54

2

13

6

9

Bristol Motor Speedway

14.33

10.58

1

12

35

6

Charlotte Motor Speedway *

14.54

17.54

1

13

7

9

Talladega SuperSpeedway

14.79

15.64

1

14

22

4

Martinsville Speedway

15.50

15.00

2

12

2

32

Dover Downs International

15.69

12.25

1

13

12

16

Richmond International Raceway

16.23

8.77

1

13

17

8

Texas Motor Speedway +

16.27

19.07

2

15

5

2

Las Vegas Motor Speedway

19.00

11.86

1

7

7

 

Sonoma Raceway

19.83

17.50

10

6

19

 

Auto Club Speedway

20.14

13.86

1

7

1

 

Atlanta Motor Speedway

21.86

18.29

3

7

9

 

Daytona International Speedway

23.93

24.77

3

14

41

29

 

+ Top-five sweeps
* Top-10 sweeps

7. Dale Earnhardt Jr. 
8. Jimmie Johnson 
9. Denny Hamlin 
10. Martin Truex Jr. 
11. Kyle Larson 
12. Carl Edwards 

 

Dan Beaver

Dan Beaver has been covering fantasy NASCAR for more than 20 years with a little help from his >650,000 record database. He can be found on Twitter @FantasyRace.