2019 Texas Motor Speedway, O’Reilly Auto Parts 500

We are heading for race seven in the 2019 season and we head back to an intermediate track and the new aero package. I wonder how long we are going to have to wait for NASCAR to see this new aero package isn’t making the racing exciting. In fact, it has been absolutely boring to this point of the season. Evan the race at Martinsville wasn’t very exciting with Brad Keselowski dominating and the only other driver that looked like they had a chance was Chase Elliott.

O’REILLY AUTO PARTS 500

The drivers head down to the Texas Motor Speedway for the running of the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500. I don’t know if I am going to watch this week’s race. I watch racing for entertainment value and I am not getting any this season. I’ve got to believe that this race is going to shake out like all of the other intermediate races this year with the same drivers in contention.

Kevin Harvick
I am going to say that Kevin figures out a little more this week, gets to the front and stays there to win his first race of the season. Kevin has nine straight top ten finishes at this track including two wins and three runner-up finishes. He is going back to victory lane.

Martin Truex Jr.
Martin has been consistent all year so far and just needs to be a little better in practices and qualifying so he doesn’t have to fight for track position all day. If he qualifies well he will give Kevin a run for his money this weekend.

Kyle Busch
Let’s not forget about this seasons wins and points leader. He has been the most consistent driver on the circuit so far and really has the new aero package figured out. At the pace he is going he is going to rack up a lot of playoff points and cruise to the championship race. Kyle has won three of the last five spring races he has run at this track including last year’s race.

Brad Keselowski
Brad and the Penske teams have all been fast all year long. Brad has five top six finishes in his last nine starts here and is looking good every week. Last year they struggled at this point of the season, but right now they are running like they did at the end of last season and should be a contender again this week.

Ryan Blaney: Another of the Penske drivers who have been very good this year, Ryan has three straight top six finishes at Texas including finishing second here last fall. I think he is getting better and better every week and he will win in the not too distant future. He will be a good group B driver to have on your roster this week.

Joey Logano
The third Penske driver in the series, Joey has ten top seven finishes in his last twelve starts at Texas. Those are great stats and with the way he has been running all season, this is another week where he has a chance to win once again. If they can make changes to the car and keep up with the changing track conditions as the race progresses he will have a chance to go to victory lane.

Kurt Busch
Kurt has been pretty impressive himself this year in his first season with Chip Ganassi Racing. He has sat on the pole here in three of his last eight starts, and has finished in the top ten in six of his last seven starts here. I think this team is going to keep improving as the season progresses and they will get to victory lane before the start of the playoffs.

Erik Jones: Eric has looked good on the intermediate tracks at this early stage of the season. He finished in fourth place in both of his races here last year and has scored stage points in every stage in his last three races including leading sixty-four laps in this race last year. He will be a dark horse to win this week.

Aric Almirola
Aric has been much improved over last season and has been a contender in a couple of races. If this team can put a whole race together they will get to victory lane. He has scored points in each of the last three stages he has finished in the last two races here, so we know he should run towards the front of the field most of the day.

Chase Elliott: In his six career starts at Texas, Chase has never finished worse than eleventh. He has scored points in six of the eight stages he has finished including finishing first or second in three of the last four stages. However, the Hendrick teams just haven’t shown the speed and handling at this point of the season with the new aero package and I want to wait until they show something or use him at the short tracks where he is good too.

DRIVER GROUP GAME FANTASY NASCAR PICKS FOR TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY

Driver Group Game Group A

  • Kevin Harvick
  • Kyle Busch

Driver Group Game Group B

  • Ryan Blaney
  • Aric Almirola
  • Kurt Busch
  • Erik Jones

Driver Group Game Group C

  • Chris Buescher
  • Daniel Hemric

MY TOP-5 OVERALL AT INSERT TRACK NAME

  1. Kevin Harvick
  2. Kyle Busch
  3. Martin Truex Jr.
  4. Brad Keselowski
  5. Joey Logano

Dark Horse: Erik Jones

Stay Away From: Jimmie Johnson

Big 18: Aric Almirola

43 thoughts on “2019 Texas Motor Speedway, O’Reilly Auto Parts 500

  1. Jeff I’ve been doing some studying here for Texas… I’m looking at the 4-1-20-18-19-2 & 10… I know I’ve listed 7 drivers just don’t know if I should start the 10 over 1 of the others or go with the 1st 6 listed? Thoughts?

    1. With the new aero package it is kind of hard to look at past results. So far this year with this package I like them in this order. Penske drivers, Gibbs drivers, and then the Stewart-Haas drivers.

    1. They always seem to change it and it doesn’t make much of a difference. Putting both Pocono races on the same weekend could come back to bite them. It always seems to rain at Pocono and then when are they going to run those races? Maybe on the off weeks at the end of July beginning of August.

      1. Im not a big fan of the changes but i give them credit for trying to shake things up a bit. Pocono will be a fantasy nightmare as well lol.

  2. Nascar needs to stop trying to make qualifying entertaining. This is so stupid. Even the drivers are confused and sick of it. Just go back to the old way. What do you think?

      1. That is who I have in my starting lineup but i am struggling with maybe putting Almirola instead of Blaney. Mike Joy tweeted some info on 15 and then 20 laps averages and Almirola shot up to the top 5 there and Blaney dropped. Lately there have been almost no cautions with this new package. Plus I think Blaney is better at other tracks, so i may put Almirola in based on that and his early hot streak. Im curious what Jeff thinks.

        1. Understandable to use Almirola over Blaney. This year at Vegas and Atlanta Blaney finished 22. While Aric finished 7 and 8.

          I’ll be curious myself.

    1. Harvick for the A group. Hemric for C

      As for the B group there are a lot of things to think about here. All of your drivers were in the top eleven in 10 lap average in the final practice. Are we looking to save starts for someone? I’m thinking Jones is always going to be used on the intermediate tracks where he runs better. The other three run well on all types of tracks. Almirola has been hot, but so has Busch. I myself have used Almirola a few times already, but haven’t used Busch yet. I don’t know exactly where you are sitting with starts right now for your drivers, but I would probably go with Jones and Busch this week and save the other 2. There is a lot of racing left on the year.

  3. Hey Jeff.. My starters of now are 18(9), 12(7), 1(9), 37(7)…..Bench 4(7), 20(9), 10(6), 95(9)…..I feel pretty ok about my starters. But am back and forth with B Busch vs Jones. I realize Jones has been good at Int tracks. But has had some bad finishes lately. Now with Busch. He was 2nd in all 10,15,20 aves. But starts 30. I can’t decide. Whatda think?

    1. I myself would start the 20 over the 12 and keep the 1 in my starting lineup. This is a big fast track, so starting towards the back shouldn’t be a big deal with the speed he was showing in practice. The 12 and 10 should run good at almost every track where you will want to use the 20 on the intermediate tracks.

  4. Why do you think it is that the lesser known drivers qualified so well this week? I.e. ty, Bubba, hemric. And drivers like Harvick, kurt and truex and Larson not so well and with Texas being a bigger track will they have a harder way to the top?

    1. I think some drivers used the first practice to set up for short runs so they would qualify well and have more time to figure out their cars before getting lapped. Wallace didn’t run very fast in the last 2 practice sessions. Hemric is on a good team and Austin Dillon has been fast all year, so this isn’t really much of a surprise to me.

      As for the big names not qualifying so well, I would guess they weren’t too worried about qualifying and were working on their cars to set them up in race trim for longer runs. If you look at their speeds in the last 2 practice sessions you will see they did much better. This is a long race, so starting position doesn’t mean as much as long run speed and handling.

  5. If this was your lineup how would you pick with all practices, pit stall, q position?
    18 (7) or 4 (6)
    12 (7) , 1 (8), 20 (7), 10 (6) pick 2
    13 (8) or 37 (5)
    Thank you for your help

  6. Something has happened to my pick sheet over night. My C driver picks are gone and replaced with my B driver picks. I put in a help request, but no one has responded as yet and I am fearful that this won’t get repaired before the deadline today. Can you give me a contact to get this repaired? Thank you

    1. He has looked a lot better this week in practice than he has so far this season. However, he did look good at the beginning of some other races and then faded as the race went on. I think this is a great step for this team, but I am going to wait and see how he runs here before using him. There are a lot of races left on the schedule very similar to Texas and we can use him once we know they have something figured out.

    1. The 2. I have to stick with the Penske drivers over the Hendrick teams until the Hendrick teams show me something on the intermediate tracks.

    1. The 1 was one of the best on long runs in the final practice. It is a long race and I look for him to make it towards the front early on and he might even get stage points in the first stage.

    1. No, I am sticking with the drivers who have shown they run consistently well on this type of track with the new aero package.

  7. Question from post #7 Copied post below…

    [Quote]
    John says:
    March 30, 2019 at 4:32 pm
    Pick two: 12, 4, 22, 18, 20, 2, 41

    Reply
    Jeff Gutowski says:
    March 30, 2019 at 4:49 pm
    4 and 18
    [Unquote]

    With that being said, who would you go with between the two 4 or 18?

    1. We do our best. We knew there would be some bugs with the game and we appreciate all of the understanding players.

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