Thursday, March 22, 2012

NASCAR Fantasy Fusion: Cruisin' into California

Track Classification: Superspeedway
Similar Tracks: Daytona International Raceway *  Indianapolis Motor Speedway  
Michigan International Speedway * Pocono Raceway * Talladega Superspeedway
Distance: 2 Miles

Drivers with Most Top 10s (Last 5 Years):
By Race
Both with 5: Jimmie Johnson and Matt Kenseth
Both with 4: Kyle Busch and Tony Stewart
All with 3: Kurt Busch; Jeff Gordon; Carl Edwards; Clint Bowyer; and Kevin Harvick

By Track
Jimmie Johnson - 7
Kevin Harvick - 6
All with 5: Tony Stewart; Matt Kenseth; Clint Bowyer; and Carl Edwards

Recent Pole Winners:  
2011 Juan Pablo Montoya
2010 Jamie McMurray

The Likely Suspects: Many of the same drivers who are strong at Bristol also race well here. Hopefully Auto Club Speedway will be kinder to them than Bristol was. These drivers include Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth, Kyle Busch, Tony Stewart, Carl Edwards, Greg Biffle, Kevin Harvick, and Clint Bowyer.

My 2 Cents: Hendrick Motorsports boasts the most wins at Fontana with Jimmie Johnson recording the most wins of the 15 different drivers with victories here. So Jimmie is a no-brainer. I need to give serious consideration between Matt Kenseth and Jeff Gordon since both have three wins each. Kenseth is the best bet though since his sports an average finish of 7.4 compared to Gordon's 10.1.

Mark Martin has a decent record at Fontana and since his ride finished top 5 in the race last week I'm thinking Martin is going to go pretty racy Sunday. Clint Bowyer, Kurt Busch and Greg Biffle round out the team nicely. I was struggling with Greg Biffle vs. Kasey Kahne, but it came down to reliability and comfort level. Kasey should be able to stay out of trouble this week, but Greg rates about three points higher so Greg it is. My final selection is a tough one but I'm feeling good about David Reutimann and Aric Almirola.

This track can wreak havoc on engines and requires a tight pit crew that can make adjustments throughout the race. I will base my final selection on practices and how comfortable the driver is with car performance.

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