2017 Watkins Glen International, I Love New York 355 at The Glen
Congratulations to Kyle Busch who broke a career long winless streak on Sunday at Pocono. He is now guaranteed a spot in the playoffs no matter what happens over the next five races. Kevin Harvick finished second once again and Martin Truex Jr. had another good points day by coming in third. There are now thirteen drivers qualified for the playoffs by virtue of winning races this season. That means there are only three spots open for drivers to get in on points at this time and any new winners will take away another one of those spots.
I LOVE NEW YORK 355 AT THE GLEN
This week the series heads to Watkins Glen International for the running of the I love New York 355 at the Glen. This is the second and final road course race this season. Could we get another new winner this week like AJ Allmendinger? That would really shake up the playoffs and knock another driver out by eliminating another points position. Like I said earlier. Five races left and three spots left to determine the entire playoff field.
Kyle Busch: Kyle is the only active driver with multiple wins at this track. Now that he got his playoff qualifying win the monkey is off his back and I think this team gets back to back victories. He has finished in the top ten at the Glen in ten of his twelve career starts which makes him the most consistent driver at this track also. I will have him on my team this weekend.
AJ Allmendinger: AJ got his only Cup win at this track in 2014. He has finished in the top ten in five of his eight starts here and could pull off the upset once again this weekend. A win here qualifies him for the playoffs which is good for his sponsors and keeps this team a float. No one can run without sponsors because of the expense of racing these cars every week. A good dark horse to have on your team.
Denny Hamlin: Denny has been looking good the past few weeks and he always seems to run well here. He won this race last season and almost won the races at Sonoma last year and this year. He will compete for the win here once again this weekend as he tries to add some playoff points to his resume. I think this is going to be a great race to watch with some good battles as we get near the end.
Martin Truex Jr.: Martin was running up front at Sonoma earlier this year when a mechanical issue took him out of the race. This team has been good every week this year and Martin wants to add some more playoff points to his series leading total. This could be a tough race for his pit crew with a couple of members being suspended for three races after an off track incident at Indy. This is a tough race for pit crews anyway because it is almost like pitting backwards from what they are used to.
Brad Keselowski: Brad is still looking for his first win at this track and runs pretty well at both of the road course tracks. This team hasn’t had the results they are expecting for the past couple of months and want to get back on track as we close in on the playoffs. Brad has the attitude you need to win races at this type of track and that goes a long way towards having everyone on your team have the confidence that you are going to compete for a win.
Joey Logano: Joey needs a win to make the playoffs and he always seems to run well here too. He has one win at Watkins Glen and has finished in the top ten in five of his eight starts here. This team is really in a funk right now and I don’t know if they will be able to get out of it and pick up a win in the next five races to make the playoffs. They just don’t seem to have what they need to compete for wins right now.
Kevin Harvick: Kevin has one win here and eight top ten finishes in his sixteen starts at this track. He came close to picking up his second win of the season last week at Pocono and wants to get some of those valuable playoff points. I think this will be another driver who has a fast good handling car all day and will have himself in a position to go for the checkers late in the race.
Kurt Busch: Kurt is another great road course races who is still looking for his first win at this track. He always seems to be towards the front of the pack and leads laps in almost every race he runs here. One of these years everything is going to fall into place for him at Watkins Glen and he will get to take home this elusive trophy. He would like nothing more than to get another win before the playoffs starts.
Clint Bowyer: Clint is trying to work his way into the top sixteen in points so he can make the playoffs on points if he can’t get a win soon. This is a track where he should run well. I don’t know if he will have what it takes to win here this weekend, but if he can come away with another top ten finish it would really help his cause. It is going to be tough for them to move into the playoffs on points and almost impossible if we have another new winner who is below him in the standings.
Kyle Larson: Kyle had issues at Pocono last weekend with a broken drive shaft. With Martin Truex Jr. having another great points day it pushed Kyle that much farther behind in the standings. This is the type of track where he could do some damage and if Martin has anymore mechanical issues Kyle will need to take advantage and gain as many points as he can. He has only run three races here with a best finish of fourth. He did start on the front row last season.
YAHOO! FANTASY NASCAR PICKS FOR WATKINS GLEN INTERNATIONAL
Yahoo Driver Group A
- Kyle Busch
- Denny Hamlin
Yahoo Driver Group B
- AJ Allmendinger
- Kurt Busch
- Clint Bowyer
- Jamie McMurray
Yahoo Driver Group C
- Daniel Suarez
- Ty Dillon
MY TOP-5 OVERALL AT WATKINS GLEN INTERNATIONAL
- Kyle Busch
- Denny Hamlin
- AJ Allmendinger
- Brad Keselowski
- Kurt Busch
Dark Horse: AJ Allmendinger
Stay Away From: Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Big 18: AJ Allmendinger