I have a feeling this is going to be one of the best championship races NASCAR has ever had in this Chase format. Here are the stats for the four drivers who qualified for the championship over their career at all intermediate tracks and at Homestead.
Jimmie Johnson: No wins at Homestead at this point, but four top five and ten top ten finishes in fifteen starts. Overall at this type of track Jimmie has 29 wins, 79 top five, and 118 top ten finishes in 173 starts.
Carl Edwards: Two wins five top five and seven top ten finishes in twelve starts at Homestead. He also has 13 wins, 53 top five, and 81 top ten finishes on the intermediate tracks in his career.
Kyle Busch: one win at Miami, two top five and four top ten finishes in eleven starts. Overall he has 11 wins, 47 top five, and 68 top ten finishes in 137 starts at the mile-and-a-half tracks in his career.
Joey Logano: Joey has yet to win a race at Miami, and he has one top five and two top ten finishes here. Overall he has 4 wins, 29 top five, and 41 top ten finishes at this type of track in 95 starts.
Who wins the championship of these four drivers?
FORD ECOBOOST 400
Jimmie Johnson: Even though he has never won a race at this track yet, I am picking Jimmie to win his seventh championship this coming weekend. I guess when he was winning those championships in other formats he pretty much had them wrapped up by the time he got to this track or just had to protect a big points lead and didn’t race as hard as he can. I think this team showed that they were back on their game by winning two of the nine Chase races up to this point and they will give their very best once again this weekend.
Kyle Busch: Kyle won this race last year when he needed it to win his first ever Cup championship. He will try to win his second straight race at this track and second straight championship this weekend. He has been consistent all year and can really get everything out of his car that he can when it comes down to crunch time. Like I said before, I think this is going to be one of the best championship races the series has ever seen.
Carl Edwards: Seeing that Carl has two wins at this track, we know he can get the job done here. Now that he won the race at Texas two weeks ago, this team will have a lot of confidence when they get to this track. If anything is going to hinder this team this weekend it is going to be their inconsistency throughout the year. It seems like if they get behind early in a race they just can’t make up the positions they need to get back in contention. That means Carl needs to be pretty good right from the start next weekend.
Joey Logano: Joey might have the least experience of the four drivers left, but he can drive a race car. I think Joey and his whole team has matured quite a bit when it comes to racing over the past couple of seasons and that will bode well for them this weekend. I think Joey will have a fast car all weekend and their biggest challenge will be keeping up with the changing track conditions in a race that starts with the sun up and ends with the sun down.
Kevin Harvick: Kevin has finished first or second in this race the past two seasons and just because he is out of the running for the championship doesn’t mean that he won’t do everything he can to win this race once again. Kevin is going to race hard no matter if the driver he is trying to pass is in championship contention or not. I think this gives him an edge over those in the championship who will let him go because he doesn’t mean anything to their championship hopes.
Martin Truex Jr.: The same thing goes for Martin. He has been fast on this type of track all season and he is going to do all that he can to win one more before he takes a vacation from racing and relaxes before the series gets going again next February. Look for Truex to get the same considerations from championship contenders unless they need to keep him behind them as they try and reel in one of the other contenders who is ahead of them.
Matt Kenseth: After wrecking in the final laps of the race last week from the lead, and thus getting knocked out of the Chase for the second straight season, Matt will be looking for a little redemption this week. He has finished in the top ten at this track in five of his last six starts. However, I think Matt will cut both of his teammates who are running for the championship a little break late in the race and might even do some blocking for them if he thinks it is necessary.
Denny Hamlin: With two wins here that all came in his last seven starts, Denny will be another of the Joe Gibbs drivers trying to win a race and wonder what could have been if he would have pitted with the rest of the field instead of staying out on old tires last week at Phoenix. A tough call by his crew-chief that didn’t work out very well for him. It’s hard to race thirty-five races and come so close to having a chance to win a championship and then get knocked out this way. It is a long way back over the first thirty-five races next season.
Brad Keselowski: Brad is still looking for his first win at this track, but he finished third in the last two races he has run here. I think he races hard once again this weekend and will not give in to anyone other than Joey Logano if it gets to that point late in the race. I look for him to have another top ten run here.
Chase Elliott: This will be Chase’s first race at this track, but with the way he has run on the intermediate tracks all season I think he will have a chance to win his first Cup race this weekend. What better way to end your rookie season than by winning your first race and being able to really look forward to capitalizing on everything you learned this season when the new season rolls around early next year.
Lastly, I would like to thank all of you loyal readers for visiting our site every week. I hope that I gave you a little insight in to how I see the races play out during the year and helped you with your fantasy leagues and you had an enjoyable year. I got a lot more questions from you this year than in years past and tried to answer them all to the best of my ability. I know I didn’t get to answer all of the questions before some of the races started and for this I apologize. I hope you all come back once again next year and let me help you out once again! See you in February!
YAHOO! FANTASY NASCAR PICKS FOR HOMESTEAD-MIAMI SPEEDWAY
Yahoo Driver Group A
- Kevin Harvick
- Jimmie Johnson
Yahoo Driver Group B
- Carl Edwards
- Martin Truex Jr.
- Kasey Kahne
- Austin Dillon
Yahoo Driver Group C
- Chase Elliott
- Ryan Blaney
MY TOP-5 OVERALL AT HOMESTEAD-MIAMI SPEEDWAY
- Kevin Harvick
- Jimmie Johnson
- Martin Truex Jr.
- Kyle Busch
- Joey Logano
Dark Horse: Chase Elliott
Stay Away From: Kurt Busch
Big 18: Jamie McMurray