Fantasy Picks ~ Martinsville 2
Race Recap and Results
“Hollywood Casino 400”
The elimination race on the Kansas City cookie-cutter paid big dividends for our Fantasy Racers as eight finished 12th or better. Mitch Walker was this week’s biggest recipient, picking the race winner, Chase Elliott. Berra’s 2nd place pick of Kyle Busch gave him enough points to slip by PattyKay and retake 2nd place in the points standings. Frank’s fifth place pick of Martin Truex Jr. allowed him to retain his solid hold on first place with four races to go.
So let’s go to this week’s scoreboard to see how the remainder of our pickers finished in the “Hollywood Casino 400” from Kansas City.
“First Data 500”
Race #33 (gosh have we run that many?) finds the Traveling Circus returning back to their roots, at the flat half-mile of Martinsville. The season was just six races old when they made their first stop here, which saw Clint Bowyer come away with the win. The “Big Three” along with Ryan Blaney filled out the top five that day. Other Chasers include Logano (6th), Elliott (8th), Kurt Busch (10th) and Almirola (12th).
Past winners include Bowyer, Kez, Newman with one win each, Kurt and Kevin have two apiece, Kyle Busch has four and Denny Hamlin with five. Jimmie Johnson has his best chance to break his winless streak, returning to the track where he has seven of his 83 wins.
In summary, lots of drivers have found success here. Let’s see who our Fantasy competitors think will take home the Grandfather Clock this week.
We're racing at my favorite track this week, so it's Mama wins time. No ifs, ands or buts; see that it happens! I won't be rounding up my usual riding companions this week. This track is tough and one driver out there has punched his ticket to ride in an impressive manner. Over the last six races, the mark I usually consider the best guide, he has an average finish of 2.7! That's 2 wins, 2 seconds and 2 fifth place finishes... all top-5s! Mama will be riding shotgun for #18, Kyle Busch at the Paperclip!
I'm an ingrate. Martin Truex finally gives me a good finish, and what do I do? How about drop him like a splitter on a hot potato. Sorry, Martin, but Martinsville is Rowdy territory, so I'm going with Kyle Busch in the #18 this week. However, I do think that Tim Leeming should be able to pick Richard Petty himself and get some kind of time machine effect to combine Bubba's talent with the King's results. As for me, I'll take my M&Ms with a side of hot pink Martinsville hot dogs.
I am going to stick with Harvick, #4 again this week and for the rest of the season.
J. L. Steele
This is a tough one, so many good drivers to choose from, all of them motivated and hungry for different reasons. After last week's elimination race at Kansas, I don't think there's anyone more motivated than Brad Keselowski. He had such a hot streak back in September, only to see it followed up with bad luck in October.
The thinking is that there are a lot of playoff drivers happy to see him eliminated because they know what a threat he could've been moving forward toward Homestead. He may be eliminated from the championship picture but I expect him to continue to make his presence felt and he'll start by winning at Martinsville.
On a roll, and since the 3 win's that Chase has had, I have been over to Dawsonville talking with Gordon Pirkle at the Ga. Hall of Fame, AND with me going back over this weekend.... it's #9 one more time showing what he really does have!
Off we go to Martinsville! This weekend I will be looking for the return of Jeb Burton in the truck series. Best of luck Jeb!!
On the Cup side of things I’m not too sure, don’t have any idea what the best driver out there is going to bring us! The best scenario I can think of is an unexpected win from one of them outside the "Playoffs" like DiBenedetto in the #Spooky Snoopy #32 or maybe even Landon Cassill (#99) who IMHO is the most underrated driver out there!!!
Well one can always dream on but the cold hard facts tells me that #18 Kyle Busch is likely to win again!!
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.
I want to jump to another pick but it’s hard to considering how the #22 has done for me of late. It may sound like a broken record, but give me Joey Logano one more time.
You’ve seen our “First Data 500” picks-tell us who you think takes the Checkers on Sunday!