Fantasy Picks ~ Las Vegas 2
Race Recap and Results
"Big Machine Vodka Brickyard 400"
Rain moved the race to Monday which unfortunately was a work day, so I was like 99.9999% of the fans and didn’t see it live or on TV broadcast. No DVR meant no watching, but after reading comments and looking at the race stats I’m not sure I missed anything but maybe an exciting finish, seeing the #2 win his second in a row and the driver of the #11 crying about lapped cars. Stats showed almost one of every four laps run were under caution with the average green flag run being 8 laps long. That’s nearly “Tiregate” numbers. Sounds to me like the boys at IMS would have been better served creating a figure-8 track out of the famed 2.5-mile oval instead of carving out a quarter mile dirt track in the third turn.
As far as our group of racers go, we had three sets of pickers as they either finished top 10, mid-pack or beyond. Frank and Vivian picked the highest finisher, fourth place Kevin Harvick, followed by PattyKay and Berra in eighth. Those were our only top 10 finishers. Vicq, Mitch and David came in 14-16 respectively. Tim and J. L. suffered the rewards of no practice. There were no position changes this week. Our race was almost as exciting as the real one.
Let’s take a look at the full rundown of the "Big Machine Vodka Brickyard 400” results-
“South Point 400”
We’re heading west to Vegas for Race 27-the first race of the Chase/Playoff/Whatever and the first return trip to this 1.5-miler. Now the focus shifts to the qualifying 16 and if race coverage history holds true, if you are a fan of a non-qualifier your driver no longer exists.
Speaking of history, since this is the first fall race here, there is no history to use. If you use the spring races as a barometer, you have the usual cast of characters rising to the top. The “Big Three”-Harvick, Busch the younger and Truex Jr. all have wins here with Harvick being the latest winner and also the only one in the trio with multiple wins. Brad K goes into the Chase on a roll with two wins in a row and has two wins here as well. Jimmie Johnson is the winningest driver here with four wins but it’s been a while since he found Victory Lane here. One of the strongest drivers to not visit Victory Lane is Joey Logano. Can he break into the winners’ column or will it be one of the other Young Guns?
Let’s see what our Racers think about the first race of the Playoffs.
This isn't too hard. Though his recent starts at LVMS have been either penthouse or outhouse, there is no real pattern to that, so I'll just ride along with the guy that led 214 of the 267 laps here in the spring... #4, Kevin Harvick. I like it better when I take him here because I always secretly pull for him anyway, even when he's being a jerk.
I tried to figure some way I could pick my Vegas winner by rolling dice, but the lack of sevens, eights, nines and zeroes just was too limiting, so instead - and in honor of the gambling capital of this great nation - I'll go out on a little limb from the Harvick/Busch/Truex "sure bets" and say that Kyle Larson will finish the deal he couldn't finish at Darlington and bring the #42 home first. If I'm wrong, just remember, "What happens in Frank's head stays in Frank's head, thank God."
I am sticking with Kevin Harvick this week to win at Vegas.
J. L. Steele
Las Vegas begins the playoff stretch and it's a great opportunity for a driver and team to get a leg up, both in points and psychologically. The regular season began with Kevin Harvick leading the way on mile and a half tracks. There's no reason not to believe he won't begin the playoff season in the same manner.
I will venture out on a limb here and say that Penske is on a roll, and young Blaney takes home the hardware.
Indy in the books and on we go to Las Vegas and another 1.5-miler! Last time in the spring no one had anything for Kevin Harvick but could this be another ball-game with the first "fall" race? I was hoping to see Matt Kenseth in the #6 with him being so good here and the car finally showing speed last week but instead Trevor Bayne is back behind the wheel. It doesn't feel like a winner to me!!
Well who to pick?? Kevin has been on my mind a couple of days and I know some of us going to pick him but I'm thinking there's going to be a home-town winner this week so I’ll go with …….. Drum roll..... #41 Kurt Busch
My contrarian strategy this year worked out about as well as Mikey's old #30 car did against the Bristol wall, so,,, for the final ten, I am picking Kyle Busch all the way, hopin' that either I won't see him making the big speech at Vegas, or that I'll claw my way out of the RFF crawl space. And I get to eat some M&Ms during the race without feelin' guilty....
My pick, every week, will be Bubba Wallace. My reasoning is my hope is that Richard Petty will have a successful year with his team and I'm supporting that hope every way I can.
The Jimmie Johnson experiment didn’t work out as well as I expected. I think there is one driver who after the last couple of weeks has a lot to prove and this week I think he’ll do it. I’m going to go with Martin Truex Jr. this time.
You’ve seen our picks-now make yours below!