NASCAR Fantasy Fusion: Bluegreen Vacations 500 at ISM Raceway

Drivers with Most Top 10s (Last 5 Years):
By Race
Kevin Harvick - 5
Kyle Busch - 4
All with 3 - Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano and Aric Almirola

By Track
Kevin Harvick - 10
Kyle Busch - 8
Both with 6 - Brad Keselowski and Denny Hamlin

Recent Pole Winners:
2018 Kevin Harvick
2017 Ryan Blaney

Last Year's Race Winner: Kyle Busch

The Likely Suspects: ISM Raceway (Phoenix) and specifically its recent reconfiguration seems to play into the hands of Kyle Busch, the only driver to win in the two races since the facility completed a major renovation and re-configuration last year. In addition to Kyle, my ISM go-tos are: Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski, Aric Almirola, Chase Elliott, Kyle Larson and Denny Hamlin. 

My 2 Cents: We're getting down to the wire here. Sometimes when you get to the last couple races of the Playoffs you're more tempted to go with sentimental picks. Resist the temptation. There's no emotion in fantasy racing, just a lot of passionate picks based on performance. My no-brainer pick this week is obviously Kyle Busch. My next choices are Kevin Harvick, Erik Jones, William Byron, Ryan Blaney and Aric Almirola. I will round out my team with Ty Dillon and Chris Buescher.

My Final Four: Kyle Busch, Aric Almirola, William Byron and Chris Buescher.

Second-Look Driver: This week's second-look driver is Ryan Blaney. Ryan earned the pole and finished third in the spring race here and led a personal best 94 laps. He has two pole positions and three Top 10s in seven ISM starts. His worst outing (34th) came in last year’s Playoff race.

Points to Ponder:
  • Ryan Newman leads the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series in poles at ISM Raceway with four (2002, 2003, 2004 and 2008).
  • Kevin Harvick leads the series in wins at ISM Raceway with nine victories (2006 sweep, 2012 Playoff race, 2013 Playoff race, 2014 sweep, 2015 Spring race, 2016 Spring race, 2018 Spring race).
  • 11 drivers have multiple wins at ISM Raceway. Among active drivers Kevin Harvick leads the series in wins with nine followed by Jimmie Johnson (four), Kyle Busch (three), and Ryan Newman (two).
  • The third starting position is the most proficient starting position in the field producing more winners (six) than any other starting position.
  • Kevin Harvick leads the Monster Energy Series in laps led at ISM Raceway with 1,595 laps led in 33 starts. 
  • Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Busch lead all active series drivers with three second-place finishes each.
  • Kevin Harvick leads the series in Top 5 finishes at ISM Raceway with 16 and in Top 10s with 22. He also leads all active drivers in average finishing position at ISM Raceway with a 9.3.
Remember, if you're playing Driver Group Game, make your picks by 8 a.m. EST on Saturday, Nov. 9th, and your final picks by 3:30 p.m. EST on race day Sunday, Nov. 10th.

Enjoy the race!

Carol D’Agostino wields fantasy-racing superpowers. Each week, Carol researches statistics and combs through her personal racing notes to provide fans with fantasy racing advice in NASCAR Fantasy Fusion, a column she has written for Skirts & Scuffs since October 2011. Carol also does race coverage for Skirts & Scuffs at Richmond Raceway and occasionally at her home track, Dover International Speedway. This year she joins the NASCAR Expert Picks panel at Fantasy Racing Cheat Sheet. When she isn’t crunching numbers, you’ll find Carol in business meetings or hammering out a news release or creating a marketing strategy at a small niche public relations firm she founded called Purple Cat. 
NASCAR Fantasy Fusion: Bluegreen Vacations 500 at ISM Raceway NASCAR Fantasy Fusion: Bluegreen Vacations 500 at ISM Raceway Reviewed by Carol D'Agostino on Friday, November 08, 2019 Rating: 5