NASCAR Fantasy Fusion: Pocono


What an emotional scene last Monday at at New Hampshire Motor Speedway when Martin Truex Jr. earned his 34th career win, his third of the season, and more importantly his first at a track of the Northeast circuits where he watched his Dad, Martin Sr., win. The victory opens his Cup Series point standings lead to 17 points over William Byron in second. It was Martin's second win of the three Monday weather-delayed races this season.

Pocono is not a Monday race, hopefully, but Martin has a decent record here and a fast car as he will be starting on the inside pole right next to William Byron who happens to have the series best average finish here. This should be interesting as drivers like Chase Elliott and Brad Keselowski look to capture their first win of the season.
Drivers with Most Top 10s at Pocono (of the last seven races 2019 to 2022):
All with 5 - Brad Keselowski, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, and Kyle Busch
All with 4 - William Byron, Kyle Larson, Martin Truex Jr., and Erik Jones

        Top 10 Average Finishing Positions at Pocono
Recent Race Winners:
2022 (July 24): Chase Elliott
2021 Race 1 (June 26): Alex Bowman
2021 Race 2 (June 27): Kyle Busch
2020 Race 1 (June 27): Kevin Harvick
2020 Race 1 (June 28): Denny Hamlin
2019 (June 2): Kyle Busch
2019 (July 28): Denny Hamlin
The Likely Suspects: My Pocono go-tos are Kyle Larson, Kevin Harvick, Denny Hamlin, Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch, William Byron, Alex Bowman, Martin Truex Jr., Erik Jones, and Chase Elliott.

My 2 Cents: My no-brainer pick this week is Kyle Larson. My next picks are Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Martin Truex Jr., Brad Keselowki, and Kyle Busch. I will complete my team with Ty Gibbs and Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

My Final Four: Kyle Larson, Martin Truex Jr., Kevin Harvick, and Ty Gibbs.

Points to Ponder:
  • 10 of the 40 NASCAR Cup Series Pocono Raceway winners are entered this weekend. They are: Denny Hamlin with 6 wins, Kyle Busch with 4, Martin Truex Jr. with 2 wins.  Chase Elliott, Alex Bowman, Kevin Harvick, Ryan Blaney, Chris Buescher, Joey Logano, and Brad Keselowski have 1 win each. 
  • 16 of the 89 (17.98%) NASCAR Cup Series races at Pocono Raceway have been won from the pole and 11 wins came from the third on the grid.
  • Hendrick Motorsports leads the series in team wins at Pocono, with 19.
  • Eight different manufacturers have won in the NASCAR Cup Series at Pocono, led by Chevrolet with 34, followed by Ford with 24. 
  • Kevin Harvick lead all active drivers in runner-up finishes at Pocono with five as well as in Top 5s with 15 and Top 10s with 22.
  • William Byron leads the NASCAR Cup Series in average finishing position at Pocono with a 9.444 average over nine starts.
  • Denny Hamlin leads all active drivers in laps led at Pocono Raceway, with 818 laps led in 33 starts. 
Remember, if you're playing Driver Group Game, make your final picks by 2:30 p.m. ET on race day Sunday, July 23rd.

Enjoy the race!

Carol D'Agostino has been playing Fantasy NASCAR for 16 years. She launched NASCAR Fantasy Fusion for Skirts & Scuffs in October 2011. Each week, Carol pores through statistics and combs through her personal notebooks to arm fans with analysis and picking strategies that will leave their friends wondering how they got so smart. Carol also does race coverage for Skirts & Scuffs at Richmond Raceway and occasionally at her home track, Dover International Speedway. She is also part of the distinguished NASCAR Expert Picks panel at formerly called Fantasy Racing Cheat Sheet.

When she isn’t wielding her fantasy-racing superpowers, you’ll find Carol hammering out a news release or creating a marketing strategy at a small niche public relations firm she founded called Purple Cat or executing downtown revitalization projects for a small town on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.

NASCAR Fantasy Fusion: Pocono NASCAR Fantasy Fusion: Pocono Reviewed by Carol D'Agostino on Sunday, July 23, 2023 Rating: 5