2018 Watkins Glen International, Go Bowling at The Glen

Congratulations to Kyle Busch on winning his sixth race of the season tying Kevin Harvick for the series lead. Kyle has the most playoff points right now, followed by Harvick and then Martin Truex Jr. That make sixteen wins in twenty-one races for these three drivers. I don’t remember a time when three drivers were this dominant this far into the season. There are only five more races left before the start of the playoffs and it looks like there are going to be a lot of drivers looking to make it into those playoffs on points.

GO BOWLING AT THE GLEN

This weekend the series heads to the second road course on the schedule as they head to Watkins Glen International for the running of the Go Bowling at The Glen race. This is an eleven turn raceway with a bus stop chicane on it. The race is schedules for ninety laps, so there isn’t much time to get the job done here if you want to win. This is one of those races that can really shake up the playoffs by having someone not in the top sixteen in points win and take a spot away from that sixteenth place driver.

They will also be running rain or shine this weekend. So, no having to worry about qualifying or the race to be delayed or postponed. Right now there is a 40% chance of rain on Sunday afternoon. I know the weather forecast can change a lot during the week, but it has been a long time since I’ve seen NASCAR run in the rain.

A.J. Allmendinger: I am going to go out on a limb and pick AJ to win another race here. I know I picked him to win out at Sonoma earlier this year and then he missed a shift and blew his engine there. It’s just that he has the best finishing average of all active drivers who have made more than one start here. In his nine starts he has the one win, three top five and six top ten finishes. The worst he has ever finished here is twenty-fourth and that was when there were forty-three cars on the track.

Kyle Busch: Kyle leads all active drivers with two wins here and he has been on a roll along with the other two drivers in the ‘Big Three’ all season. He also has eleven top ten finishes in his thirteen starts at this track. Those are amazing stats for a track that is tough on equipment and that can knock you to the back of the field with every little mistake you make on the track or in the pits.

Brad Keselowski: Brad is looking for his first win of the season and his first win at The Glen in his career. He finished second here three times in a row in the 2011-2013 seasons and has five top ten finishes in his eight starts. Not a lot has gone right for Brad this year, but I think he is looking forward to coming here and trying to get his first win of the season and punch his ticket to the playoffs.

Denny Hamlin: Denny started out his career with four straight top ten finishes at this track and then he followed that up with six races in a row where he only finished in the top twenty once. Then he won this race two years ago and followed that up with a fourth place finish last season. I am going to go on the side that Denny is on a roll here now because of his last two finishes here coupled with three straight top ten finishes at Sonoma.

Martin Truex Jr.: Now let’s not forget Martin. He won the race here last year and followed it up with a win at Sonoma earlier this year. He has also started in the top five in five of his last six road course races. That tells me that Martin has this road course racing figured out and gives ‘The Big Three’ more chances to keep on winning.

Kevin Harvick: We might as well talk about Kevin right away and make sure that everyone knows that one of these three drivers can win once again this weekend. Kevin’s lone win here came back during the 2006 season and he really hasn’t been that consistent here. Still he has finished in the top ten in almost half of the seventeen races he has run here and the way he is going right now he could get that second win here this weekend.

Clint Bowyer: Clint is the one driver besides the big three to win a race at a non-restrictor plate track this season. He is also very good at these road course tracks. He finished fifth here last year and finished second and third in his last two races at Sonoma. I think he just loves this kind of racing and comes in looking forward to the weekend and with a lot of confidence.

Joey Logano: Joey won this race three years ago and then came back and finished second the year after that. Joey picked up a win at Talladega earlier this season and is qualified for the playoffs, so he could do something different this weekend to gain track position and put himself in contention for the win and a chance to gain some valuable playoff points.

Kurt Busch: Kurt is another driver who is looking for his first win of the season and first at The Glen. However, in his last ten starts at the two road course tracks he hasn’t finished worse than twelfth. Those are all races he has run with Stewart-Haas Racing and that tells me this team has a handle on how to get around both of these tracks and if everything falls into place, Kurt could get that long sought after victory here.

Matt Kenseth: Matt will be behind the wheel of the #6 car once again this weekend. He has had some okay races since he has been back, but is still looking for a really good race. Getting a car setup for a driver here is hard to do, but if they can give Matt something he can work with he could have that great race. He finished second here last year with Joe Gibbs Racing and has only finished outside the top twenty once in his last ten starts at this track with both Gibbs and Roush.

DRIVER GROUP GAME FANTASY NASCAR PICKS FOR WATKINS GLEN INTERNATIONAL

Driver Group Game Group A

  • Martin Truex Jr.
  • Denny Hamlin

Driver Group Game Group B

  • A.J. Allmendinger
  • Kurt Busch
  • Clint Bowyer
  • Matt Kenseth

Driver Group Game Group C

  • Michael McDowell
  • Chris Buescher

MY TOP-5 OVERALL AT WATKINS GLEN INTERNATIONAL

  1. A.J. Allmendinger
  2. Denny Hamlin
  3. Martin Truex Jr.
  4. Kyle Busch
  5. Kurt Busch

Dark Horse: Matt Kenseth

Stay Away From: Aric Almirola

Big 18: A.J. Allmendinger

71 thoughts on “2018 Watkins Glen International, Go Bowling at The Glen

  1. I did some studying last night & came up with this for my line up once fantasy opens! 11 18 19 47 78 & 41 in the Garage! Basically your top 5 with the addition of Suarez’! What are your thoughts on the 19 car? Ran good yesterday & has finished 3rd here last year!

        1. I would probably use Bowyer for Kyle or Martin and save their starts for the intermediate tracks. There will be plenty more times you would use them over Bowyer on the intermediate tracks.

          1. ok. thanks! I was looking to save their last 4 starts for the last 4 races… I have 3 left on the 4 also I’m trying to save…

    1. That depends on how many uses you have for the 19. If you need to save some starts then I go with the 6 and start him if he looks good in practice.

  2. In driver group game if not worried about usage what would your team look like A,B,&C drivers, .thks!!!

    1. Once again it depends on how many starts you have left with him. He has been good at these tracks in his short career, but he is also good at a lot of other tracks too.

    1. There was a windshield wiper on the cars at Sonoma, so I am guessing they will have them again this weekend. Back in the 80’s they ran in the rain at the road course tracks and I’m pretty sure they said they would do it again starting last season.

    2. Wet Weather Tires – White-lettered tires on hand: Goodyear will bring its wet weather radials for use at Watkins Glen, should NASCAR decide that conditions warrant . . . teams are allowed up to three sets of “wets” for practice/qualifying and up to three sets for the race . . . this tire was last run by NASCAR Xfinity Series teams at Mid-Ohio in 2016 . . . one change from last year, the “Goodyear” and “Eagle” lettering on the sidewalls of the wet weather tires is white, not the standard yellow.

  3. In my league we can only pick 1 driver per week and use him every 10th race and we have to have our picks in before qualifying…..I’m in the top 5 in my league and I’m not sure which driver I should take my choice are the 14,22,48,42,47,19…..I can only pick 1 which one would you take? Again I won’t be able to use him for 10 more races after this week…..thanks

    1. If I were you I would use Allmendinger. Otherwise I would probably use Bowyer. There is a race on the roval at Charlotte during the playoffs and none of the drivers has ever raced a Cup car there, so that will be a wildcard week.

    1. McDowell is probably one of the better road racers in the C group. I would rather take a chance on Allmendinger than Kahne if you are looking for a dark horse in the B class, but Kahne could come out okay here too.

  4. Jeff after both practice sessions do you still like the 47 on the pole? I have the 18 set there, but thinking of changing it to the 11 on the pole!

    1. It seemed like the driver who were fast in the first practice were poor in the second. Makes it tough to judge.

  5. Lineup w starts left, big league

    Hamlin 6 always messes up on pit road lol
    Suarez 8
    Dinger 9 make or break, feel like he will overdrive because of pressure
    Mcdowell 8

    Kez 9
    Kenseth 9
    Busch 4 poor qualifying but thinking about starting him over Dinger
    Buescher 6

    Your thoughts Jeff ?

    1. I stick with Allmendinger. Too many chances to get banged up starting back in the field and trying to pass.

  6. Jeff after both practice sessions & qualifying do you like the 19 or 22 better this weekend? I currently have the 19 in my l8ne up but considering changing to the 22? i have 5 uses left on each of them!

  7. 1 more ? Before the green later on… the 14 or the 41 today? I currently have the 41 in my garage… who do you like better today? the 14 has been better all weekend thus far but the 41 has a top 10 average finish here! 3 uses left on 41 & 4 uses left on 14

    1. Both starting in the middle of the field. The 14 was a little better in practice and you have one more start left with him, so because of this I start the 14.

  8. I’m starting 22, 9, 47, 14, 20 with 18 in garage but it’s my last pick for kB… who should I put in my garage ?

  9. I have the following in B and need help on who to run today.
    AJ – 9 starts
    Kurt B – 3 starts
    Daniel S – 7 starts
    Clint B – 4 starts

    Have 4 or more starts left with the rest on my B drivers.

  10. Denny Hamlin or Kyle Busch? Then I have AJ Allmendinger aric almirola Kurt Busch and Daniel Suarez. What two would you role with? I need to gain some points.. thanks Jeff

  11. Jeff,
    Should I start Suarez with 9 starts left or Jones with 4 starts left or Bowyer with 5 starts left? To pair with Dinger?

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