Loading scores...
Statistically Speaking

Toyota Owners 400 Stats

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

This week’s race: Toyota Owners 400
Traditional Name: Richmond 400
Other Notable Names: Pontiac Excitement 400, Chevy American Revolution 400, Crown Royal 400, Capital City 400 (historically the name of the fall race), Toyota Owners 400

Richmond is an existential dilemma.

Is it a short track? Yes

Is it a flat track? Yes

But it is so much more. Richmond International Raceway races as much like one of the similarly-configured, 1.5- and two-mile tracks as it does a short course. The constant radius of the front stretch allows drivers to keep their momentum up like they would at Michigan International Speedway or Auto Club Speedway and most of the single-doglegged 1.5-milers.

The minimal banking can draw comparisons to Phoenix International Raceway and New Hampshire Motor Speedway, but also the 2.5- mile iterations of Pocono Raceway and Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Flat tracks behave a little like road courses because drivers have to brake before entry into the corners.

In many ways this track bears similarities to practically every track on the circuit.

It should come as no surprise that everyone wants to run well this weekend.

10 best drivers at Richmond

Over the past six races, these drivers have the best average finish on this track.

1. Joey Logano
Last six races average finish at Richmond: 6.67
Career avg. finish: 13.8 in 14 attempts

Four years ago the best thing that may have ever happened to Logano was to get fired from Joe Gibbs Racing. Rushed into the senior series when Tony Stewart decided to start his own team, he was unprepared for the rigors of Cup and failed to thrive. Once he got to Penske Racing, however, he became almost perfect on a few tracks. He has only one sub-sixth-place finish in six starts at Richmond in the No. 22

2. Kevin Harvick
Last six races average finish at Richmond: 7.33
Career avg. finish: 10.8 in 30 attempts

The best thing Harvick has going for him at the moment is that he has been running at the end of every race he started at Richmond. Until last fall, he was riding an eight-race streak of lead lap finishes as well, and even though he lost one lap to the leaders in September, he still extended a current streak of top-15s to seven consecutive races.

3. Kurt Busch
Last six races average finish at Richmond: 9.50
Career avg. finish: 16.5 in 30 attempts

“Methinks he doth protest too much,” is a quote that immediately springs to mind after Busch threatened to shut Brad Keselowski’s “[expletive deleted] lip” last week at Bristol Motor Speedway. Everyone presses the issue when they think they can get away with it, however, and Busch did not get to the top of the standings by being a milktoast at Richmond.

4. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Last six races average finish at Richmond: 10.17
Career avg. finish: 13.2 in 33 attempts

In his last six attempts at Richmond, Earnhardt has only one top-five and three top-10s, but he gets included in the top 10 this week because of a perfect record of top-15s. In fact, one has to go all the way back to the fall 2011 race to find a race in which he did not score a top-15; Earnhardt finished 16th that evening.

5. Jamie McMurray
Last six races average finish at Richmond: 10.67
Career avg. finish: 20.3 in 26 attempts

McMurray is another driver who got where he is by consistency. His last five Richmond attempts ended in top-15 finishes and if he can finish that well again this week, a 26th-place effort in spring 2013 will age out of this formula and allow him to inch up the average finish list. McMurray has not been perfect in his career, but he has been running at the end of the last 15 straight races.

6. Ryan Newman
Last six races average finish at Richmond: 11.17
Career avg. finish: 11.5 in 28 attempts

Newman entered last fall’s Federated Auto Parts 400 with an eight-race, top-15 streak, He finished on the lead lap in every one of those races, but he slipped three circuits off the pace in that event to finish 20th. He remains in the top 10 this week and still have a perfect record of running at the end of all 28 events he started at Richmond.

7. Matt Kenseth
Last six races average finish at Richmond: 11.17
Career avg. finish: 15.5 in 32 attempts

If not for crash damage that slowed Kenseth in fall 2014, he would easily be one of this week’s top five. His last six races ended in a worst result of seventh otherwise and he had a fifth-place finish the previous fall and an 11th that spring. Richmond is a track on which drivers can often chose a line that allows them to stay out of trouble, so Kenseth is one of many drivers to have completed every race he started.

8. Carl Edwards
Last six races average finish at Richmond: 11.33
Career avg. finish: 14.0 in 23 attempts

Edwards struggled some in recent years at Richmond. His last start at Roush-Fenway Racing ended with a 22nd—four laps off the pace. His first Joe Gibbs Racing effort wound up 19th and he failed to crack the top 10 last fall as well. He’s hovered close enough to the leaders to land in the top 10, however, and after last week’s dominant performance at Bristol, he has to be considered one of the favorites for the Toyota Owners 400.

9. Kyle Busch
Last six races average finish at Richmond: 12.40 (five starts)
Career avg. finish: 7.1 in 21 attempts

From 2009 through 2012, Busch was almost perfect at Richmond. He scored his four victories in that span of races and never finished worse than sixth. Lately he has not been as strong, but he has continued to finish on the lead lap. In fact, in 21 attempts on this track, he has failed to finish only one of the circuits and that came back in fall 2012 when he finished 16th.

10. Kyle Larson
Last six races average finish at Richmond: 12.75 (four starts)
Career avg. finish: 12.8 in 4 attempts

Larson has not yet cracked the top 10 at Richmond, but this is still one of his better tracks. He finished 16th in spring 2014 after leading the field to green. That lineup was set by practice time and he has not gotten off to such a solid start since, but he has narrowly missed the single digits with one 11th-place result and two 12ths. 

 

Rank

Driver

Avg. Fin. L3Yr

Attempts

1.

Joey Logano

6.67

6

2.

Kevin Harvick

7.33

6

3.

Kurt Busch

9.50

6

4.

Dale Earnhardt Jr.

10.17

6

5.

Jamie McMurray

10.67

6

6.

Ryan Newman

11.00

6

7.

Matt Kenseth

11.17

6

8.

Carl Edwards

11.33

6

9.

Kyle Busch

12.40

5

10.

Kyle Larson

12.75

4

 

11.

Aric Almirola

13.17

6

12.

Brad Keselowski

13.33

6

13.

Kasey Kahne

15.00

6

14.

Clint Bowyer

15.33

6

15.

AJ Allmendinger

15.83

6

16.

Martin Truex Jr.

16.83

6

17.

Paul Menard

16.83

6

18.

Jimmie Johnson

17.33

6

19.

Denny Hamlin

18.40

5

20.

Brian Vickers

21.00

4

21.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

22.33

6

22.

Greg Biffle

22.33

6

23.

Trevor Bayne

23.50

2

24.

Austin Dillon

25.25

4

25.

David Ragan

25.33

6

26.

Danica Patrick

25.50

6

27.

Tony Stewart

25.60

5

28.

Casey Mears

26.17

6

29.

Landon Cassill

29.17

6

30.

Cole Whitt

36.25

4

31.

Michael Annett

36.50

4

32.

Matt DiBenedetto

36.50

2

33.

Reed Sorenson

36.60

5

34.

Josh Wise

37.67

6

35.

Michael McDowell

42.00

4

Drivers with Only One Start

 

Chase Elliott

16.00

1

 

Brian Scott

22.00

1

 

Jeffrey Earnhardt

40.00

1

 

Joey Gase

43.00

1

 

Exercise Caution

Most caution flags: 15 (3 times), 2011 Wonderful Pistachios 400, 2009 Crown Royal Russ Friedman 400, 2003 Pontiac Excitement 40

Fewest caution flags: 3 (5 times) 2010 Air Guard 400, 1997 Exide Batteries NASCAR 400, 1997 Pontiac Excitement 400, 1993 Pontiac Excitement 400, 1992 Miller Genuine Draft 40

Average number of caution flags per race: 8.5
In 2016: 6.9

Final Caution, last five races:
September 2015: Lap 376 of 400: debris on backstretch
April 2015: Lap 369 of 400 2-car accident on the backstretch (Sam Hornish Jr./Jeb Burton)
September 2014: Lap 331 of 400: Security (man climbed on top of the fence)
April 2014: Lap 386 of 400: oil on track
September 2013: Lap 394 of 400: 1-car spin in turn three (Clint Bowyer)

Most caution laps: 103, 2002 Pontiac Excitement 400
Fewest caution laps: 12, 1997 Pontiac Excitement 400
Average number of caution laps per race: 52.4
In 2016: 40.9

Leading the way

Most leaders: 19, 2004 Chevy American Revolution 400
Fewest leaders: 2, 2014 Federated Auto Parts 400
Average number of leaders: 7.9
In 2016: 7.6

Most lead changes: 25 (2 times), 1996 Pontiac Excitement 400, 1991 Pontiac Excitement 400
Fewest lead changes: 4, 2008 Crown Royal Dan Lowry 400, 2014 Federated Auto Parts 400
Average number of lead changes: 15.4
In 2016: 19.6

Victory Lane
Last five winners at Richmond (starting position):
September 2015: Matt Kenseth (2)
April 2015: Kurt Busch (3)
September 2014: Brad Keselowski (1)
April 2014: Joey Logano (17)
September 2013: Carl Edwards (26)

Worst starting position for race winner: 31st, Clint Bowyer 2008 Crown Royal 400

A race at Richmond has been won by the pole sitter 6 times and from the front row 11 times in 55 races.

Recent races won from the pole:
Brad Keselowski: 2014 Federated Auto Parts 400
Kyle Busch: 2010 Crown Royal Heath Calhoun 400
Jimmie Johnson: 2007 Chevy Rock & Roll 400
Kasey Kahne: 2005 Chevy American Revolution 400

Active winners at Richmond:
Kyle Busch: 4
Dale Earnhardt Jr.: 3
Kevin Harvick: 3
Jimmie Johnson: 3
Tony Stewart: 3
Clint Bowyer: 2
Denny Hamlin: 2
Kurt Busch: 2
Matt Kenseth: 2
Carl Edwards: 1
Kasey Kahne: 1
Joey Logano: 1
Ryan Newman: 1
Brad Keselowski: 1

Top-10 All-time Winners:
Rusty Wallace: 6
Kyle Busch: 4
Dale Earnhardt Jr.: 3
Kevin Harvick: 3
Jimmie Johnson: 3
Terry Labonte: 3
Tony Stewart: 3
Davey Allison: 2
Clint Bowyer: 2
Kurt Busch: 2
Dale Earnhardt: 2
Jeff Gordon: 2
Denny Hamlin: 2
Ernie Irvan: 2
Dale Jarrett: 2
Matt Kenseth: 2

First time winners at Richmond:
2005: Kasey Kahne, Chevy American Revolution 400
1999: Tony Stewart, Exide NASCAR Select Batteries 400

Short, flat tracks (Richmond, Martinsville, New Hampshire, and Phoenix)
All time

Jimmie Johnson: 18
Jeff Gordon: 16
Richard Petty: 15
Rusty Wallace: 15
Kevin Harvick: 13
Darrell Waltrip: 11
Denny Hamlin: 10
Tony Stewart: 10
Dale Earnhardt: 9
Jeff Burton: 8
Kurt Busch: 8
Kyle Busch: 8

Running at the End

The following active drivers have been running at the end of every Bristol race they started:
Paul Menard (17)
Brad Keselowski (12)
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (6)
Alex Bowman (4)
Austin Dillon (4)
Cole Whitt (4)
Trevor Bayne (3)
Matt DiBenedetto: (2)

Great Starts

The following active drivers have been running at the end of every Richmond race they started:
Matt Kenseth (32)
Kevin Harvick (30)
Ryan Newman (28)
Kyle Busch (21)
Paul Menard (18)
David Ragan (18)
Aric Almirola (8)
AJ Allmendinger (8)
Danica Patrick (6)
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (6)
Denny Hamlin (16)
Landon Cassill (11)
Austin Dillon (4)
Kyle Larson (4)
Matt DiBenedetto (2)
Trevor Bayne (2)
Jeffrey Earnhardt (1)
Chase Elliott (1)
Brian Scott (1)

Brad Keselowski blew an engine and failed to finish in 2009, but he has been running at the end of 12 races since.
Cole Whitt failed finish his first attempt in 2012, but he has been running at the end of 4 races since.
Michael Annett had been running at the end of three consecutive races until he crashed last fall.

Current Streaks

At Richmond  
Joey Logano, four top-10s
Clint Bowyer, three top-10s
Jimmie Johnson, three top-10s
Matt Kenseth, two top-10s

On Short tracks (Bristol, Martinsville, and Richmond)
Ryan Newman, three top-10s
Carl Edwards, two top-10s

On Short, flat tracks (Martinsville, Richmond, New Hampshire, and Phoenix)
Kyle Busch, four top-fives
Carl Edwards, two top-10s
Austin Dillon, two top-10s

In 2016
Carl Edwards, five top-10s
Dale Earnhardt Jr., two runner-up finishes
Kevin Harvick, two top-10s
Joey Logano, two top-10s
Chase Elliott, two top-10s
Kurt Busch, two top-10s

 

 

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.