2018 Bristol Motor Speedway, Food City 500

Congratulations to Kyle Busch who picked up his first win of the season and has now finished in the top five in his last five starts. He also picked up a valuable six playoff points by winning a stage and the race this week at Texas. Kevin Harvick gave Kyle a good fight once again, but Kyle didn’t let Kevin challenge him after the last restart of the race and won quite easily.


This week the series heads to the Bristol Motor Speedway for the running of the Food City 500. Once again the drivers are on a short track, but this time there is going to be a lot of banking in the corners, unlike Martinsville. This is going to be another exciting race on the season and qualifying will mean everything here once again because of the pit stall going all the way around this small half-mile track.

Kyle Busch: Kyle is the hottest driver on the circuit right now and it is his turn to win multiple races in a row. Kyle leads all active drivers with six wins at this track. He has also finished in the top five nine times and in the top ten fourteen times in his twenty-five starts at Bristol. With the momentum he is carrying and the attitude he has I have to pick him to win once again this week.

Kevin Harvick: Kevin won’t be happy with a second place finish last week and will do everything he can to get back to victory lane this week. Kevin has finished in the top ten at Bristol in his last five start including a win in the fall of 2016. These are the top two drivers right now who seem to be battling each other every week for a top five finish or a race win. I see that continuing again this weekend.

Kurt Busch: Kurt trails his brother in wins at Bristol, but only by one. He has five wins here himself. If he can stay out of trouble early in the race he will be in contention late in the race this weekend. This team has been running very well all year and could come away with their first win of the season if everything goes as planned.

Joey Logano: Jowy has finished in the top ten in four of his last five starts at this track including a win in the fall of 2015. This team has looked much better so far this season than they did for much of last season. This is another team that needs to make sure they are making the right adjustments during the race as the track changes and if they do that they will have a shot at the win once again this weekend.

Denny Hamlin: Denny always seems to run well at this track and has finished in the top ten in four of his last five starts here also. Of those four top ten finishes, three of them have been third place finishes. Anyone who can run that consistently at this track needs to be considered for your line up this weekend. The only thing that can really hurt this team are pit road speeding penalties which Denny seems to get a lot of and he got one again last week at Texas.

Kyle Larson: Kyle has led a lot of laps at this track over the past two seasons. In fact, Kyle Busch is the only active driver to lead more laps at this track the past two seasons. I think this team is going to come out with a strong race car and qualify well here. He sat on the front row for both of the races here last season and could very well sit there again and I don’t think they will have to worry about tire issues this weekend.

Erik Jones: Erik has only run two Cup races at this track, but he led 260 laps here last fall and finished second. After another top five finish at Texas last week, this team will try to build on their momentum this weekend. I think that after running so well here last fall, Erik will have a lot of confidence going into this weekend and will be looking forward to the green flag flying once again.

Clint Bowyer: Clint finished second in this race last year and now that he has a little more time with his Stewart-Haas team they will be looking to get to victory lane once again on a short track this season. Granted, this race is a little different than Martinsville, but Clint always seems to run well on the short track no matter who he is racing for. I look for him to come away with at least another top ten finish this week if not more.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.: For some reason, Ricky runs well here on a consistent basis coming away with five top ten finishes in his ten starts at Bristol. This team looked really good last week at Texas until they had mechanical issues late in the race and I know Ricky is looking forward to going to Bristol this weekend. I think this team is going to continue to improve as the season progresses.

Ryan Newman: Surprisingly to me, Ryan only has two top five finishes at this track and no wins yet. However, he has finished in the top ten seventeen times in his thirty-two starts, so that is a top ten finish in over half of his starts. He has once again been having a quietly successful season and could really surprise people this weekend. I think he is some one to keep on your radar this week.


Driver Group Game Group A

  • Kyle Busch
  • Kyle Larson

Driver Group Game Group B

  • Clint Bowyer
  • Ryan Newman
  • Erik Jones
  • Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

Driver Group Game Group C

  • Matt DiBenedetto
  • Chris Buescher


  1. Kyle Busch
  2. Kyle Larson
  3. Kevin Harvick
  4. Joey Logano
  5. Clint Bowyer

Dark Horse: Ryan Newman

Stay Away From: Ryan Blaney

Big 18: Kyle Busch

33 thoughts on “2018 Bristol Motor Speedway, Food City 500

    1. Right not I am going with Larson. Just can’t predict if Hamlin will penalize himself out of the race by speeding again.

  1. What your reason 2 go with Larson over someone like Logano, that runs very well here and has been a driving that is having a good year so far and is not being talked about.I think the #22 would be better than the #42, but fill me in on your info and reasoning Jeff??

    1. With Larson sitting on the front row for both races last year and finishing top ten in both of those races where he could have done better if not for some bad luck. I thin this is the type of track where he will run well again this season. As for Logano, this is the type of track he struggled on last year after he was penalized following the Richmond race in the spring. Not saying Logano won’t run well here this year.

      1. I like the Logano choice this week for sure with his stats and numbers at Bristol. Was really only asking about Larson and with the way the team is running and doing so far in 2018 compared to last year and rhe year before like u are talking.But good insight and maybe someone yo not count out.

  2. Jeff, I have Kyle B and Logano. 7 and 9 starts left respectively. If both are strong in practice, would you considr starting Logano and saving a start with Busch? As Kyle mentioned, he usually runs great if he starts back a bit, finishes worse when he starts up front.

    1. Newman had the best single lap and 10 lap average in the final practice of those three. If you want to save starts and take a chance on someone, go with Menard.

  3. Did bowyer and bayne touch each other in practice. Does either one have to go to back up car? Have you heard of this yet?

    1. Elliott finished in the top ten in both of his spring starts at Bristol where Jones got his top ten finish in the fall race here. If that holds true, Elliott in the spring and Jones in the fall.

  4. Should I sit Kurt since he has to go to the rear? I have bowyer and Jones and backups. Also Buescher or DiBenedetto?

    1. Going to be tough for him to get back to the front, but he has done it before and won the race. The question is, how quickly can he get towards the front again? He was fast in his first car, will his backup be fast enough to propel him forward or will he get lapped because he is already a half lap behind when he hits the start finish line? Tough to take a chance on him this weekend. I am going with DiBenedetto but that is a toss up too.

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