NASCAR Fantasy Fusion: Race two at Las Vegas Motor Speedway

Drivers with Most Top 10s:
By Race and Track in the Last 5 Years (Last 7 races)
Both with 7 - Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano
Martin Truex - 6
All with 5 - Kevin Harvick, Kyle Larson and Ryan Blaney
Kyle Busch - 4 

2019 Race Winner: Joey Logano

Recent Pole Winners:
2019 Kevin Harvick
2018 Ryan Blaney

The Likely Suspects: Las Vegas racing and Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano and the Busch brothers are pretty much a given. They just always seem to run well here. But I'll add these drivers to my Vegas elite group: Kevin Harvick, Martin Truex Jr. and Ryan Blaney.

My 2 Cents: Las Vegas Motor Speedway tends to be a Penske track, but the Toyotas and Chevys may just give the Penske Fords a run for their money this weekend. My no-brainer pick this week is Joey Logano. My next choices are Kevin Harvick, Kurt Busch, Ryan Blaney, Kyle Larson, and Jimmie Johnson. I will round out my team with Ty Dillon and John Hunter Nemechek.

Second-Look Driver: This week's second-look driver is Aric Almirola. Aric has been racking up Top 10 finishes here at Las Vegas for three out of the last four races. His best finish was sixth place in the fall 2018 race. His new crew chief Mike Bugarewicz worked with Clint Bowyer and helped Bowyer earn a pole last fall. Let's see what this new pairing can do this week. Last week's second-look driver Michael McDowell almost made it to the end without getting caught up in a wreck, but alas, during the first overtime restart McDowell and Clint Bowyer collided. All in all, though, it wasn't a bad day for McDowell. He started in 26th, finished in 14th, and even led one lap.

My Final Four: Joey Logano, Ryan Blaney, Kyle Larson and Ty Dillon

Points to Ponder:
  • Two active drivers are tied for the most poles at Las Vegas Motor Speedway: Kyle and Kurt Busch with two each. 
  • Kyle Busch is the only driver to win consecutive poles at LVMS (2008-2009).
  • Jimmie Johnson leads the NASCAR Cup Series in wins at Las Vegas Motor Speedway with four victories (2005, 2006, 2007, and 2010).
  • Of the 13 series winners at Las Vegas, six are active this weekend: Jimmie Johnson (4), Brad Keselowski (3), Kevin Harvick (2), Martin Truex Jr. (2), Kyle Busch (1), and Joey Logano (1).
  • Five of the 24 Las Vegas races (20.8%) have been won from the front row: Kyle Busch, 2009 (pole); Carl Edwards, 2008 (second starting position); Brad Keselowski, 2014 (second starting position); Martin Truex Jr., 2017 (second starting position); Kevin Harvick, 2018 (second starting position).
  • Roush Fenway Racing leads the series in wins at Las Vegas with seven victories, followed by Hendrick Motorsports with five.
  • Four manufacturers have visited Victory Lane in the NASCAR Cup Series at Las Vegas, led by Ford (12), Chevrolet (seven), Toyota (four) and Dodge (one).
  • Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, and Kyle Larson lead all active drivers in second-place finishes in the NASCAR Cup Series at Las Vegas Motor Speedway with two each.
  • Kyle Busch, Brad Keselowski and Kevin Harvick lead the series in Top 5 finishes at Las Vegas with seven each.
  • Kevin Harvick and Ryan Newman lead all active drivers in Top 10 finishes at Las Vegas with 10 each.
  • Joey Logano leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Cup Series in average finish at LVMS with a 8.5.
  • A total of 76 different drivers have led laps in the NASCAR Cup Series at Las Vegas, topped by Jimmie Johnson with 595 laps led in 20 starts.
  • The most laps led by the race winner in a NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas is 214 of the scheduled 267 (80.1%) by Kevin Harvick on March 4, 2018, when he started second.
    Remember, if you're playing Driver Group Game, make your picks by 8 a.m. ET on Friday, February 21 and final picks by 3:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, February 23.  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 at 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: Race two at Las Vegas Motor Speedway NASCAR Fantasy Fusion: Race two at Las Vegas Motor Speedway Reviewed by Carol D'Agostino on Thursday, February 20, 2020 Rating: 5