The 5 drivers with the best chance of winning at Talladega
Whenever the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series heads to Talladega Superspeedway, it's always a chess match in that just about anyone can win. But here are the 5 drivers who have the best chance of capturing Sunday's GEICO 500 (1 p.m. ET, FOX), starting with the driver least likely to win among the five contenders.
Getty ImagesMike Ehrmann
5. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
NASCAR's most popular driver won five times at Talladega from 2001-2004 but hasn't been back to Victory Lane since at the 2.66-mile track. In fact, Junior hasn't won at 'Dega since joining Hendrick Motorsports in 2008. Now may be his time.
Getty ImagesJonathan Ferrey
4. Denny Hamlin
Prior to last year's spring race at Talladega, Denny Hamlin had never scored a points-paying win at a restrictor-plate track. But that all changed in the Aaron's 499 as the Joe Gibbs Racing driver led just 12 laps, including the final two, to score in his 17th start at the Alabama facility.
NASCAR via Getty ImagesJared C. Tilton
3. Jamie McMurray
Always a force to be reckoned with at the restrictor-plate tracks, Jamie McMurray owns a pair of wins at Talladega, with the most recent coming in the fall of 2013. The Chip Ganassi Racing driver has also been hot of late, which bodes well for another strong outing this weekend.
NASCAR via Getty ImagesTodd Warshaw
2. Jeff Gordon
With six victories at Talladega, Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers in wins at the high-banked, high-speed venue. The Hendrick Motorsports driver hasn't gone to Victory Lane at Talladega, however, since 2007 -- when he swept the two Sprint Cup Series at the venerable track. Look for Gordon, who comes into the weekend riding a streak of six consecutive top-10 finishes, to be a factor on Sunday afternoon.
Getty ImagesStreeter Lecka
1. Brad Keselowski
With three wins in just 12 starts at Talladega, including an impressive drive to victory in last October's Chase elimination race here, Brad Keselowski is the prohibitive favorite coming into the weekend. One of the biggest keys for the 2012 Sprint Cup champion will be drafting help from teammate Joey Logano, with whom he has worked closely at Talladega in the past.