FOX Fantasy Picks: Getting 'Rowdy' in New Hampshire
Coming off the wild and wet weekend in Daytona, it's off to New England for Sunday's Camping World RV Sales 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Typically at New Hampshire, fuel mileage and track position are key, and this weekend should be no exception. Already this weekend, we've seen multiple tire issues in practice, so keeping the left rear tire under the car also will be a key to success.
With that in mind, let's take a look at this week's fantasy picks.
Remember, these are simply suggestions, so pick your team wisely and best of luck. If you haven't done so yet, be sure to sign up for FOX Fantasy Auto Racing, create your team and start playing today!
Captain: Kyle Busch
New Hampshire stats: 1 win; 6 top 5s; 6 top 10s; Average finish: 15.1
The 2006 New Hampshire winner has been on a roll at the Magic Mile as of late. Busch finished second in both NHMS events last season, was in the top 10 in two of the weekend's three practice sessions, and on Friday set a new track record in Sprint Cup Series qualifying to score the pole.
Throughout the weekend, Busch and crew chief Dave Rogers have worked on long runs, something that has cost the team in the past.
Last week in Daytona, Busch ended the day on his roof and come Sunday at New Hampshire he hopes to end it in Victory Lane.
Driver #2: Brian Vickers
New Hampshire stats: 1 win; 3 top 5s; 5 top 10s; Average finish: 18.4
Michael Waltrip Racing's Brian Vickers surprised many when he scored the win at New Hampshire Motor Speedway last July. However, it should come as no surprise if Vickers' No. 55 Toyota is running up front at the end of the day on Sunday.
In the last five NHMS races, Vickers has one win, two top-fives and four top-10s. Sitting on the outside looking in, the MWR driver felt as if a win slipped from his grasp last weekend at Daytona when NASCAR called the race for rain.
Headed back to the site of his last win, Vickers is hungry, fast and ready to contend.
Driver #3: Jamie McMurray
New Hampshire stats: 0 wins; 3 top 5s; 5 top 10s; Average finish: 21.5
Jamie McMurray's New Hampshire stats might not be impressive, but the Chip Ganassi Racing driver has been fast all weekend long at the 1.06-mile speedway.
McMurray struggled at the Magic Mile in 2011 and 2012, finishing 20th or worse in those four events. However, the driver of the No. 1 Chevrolet finished fifth in last year's Chase race.
The Sprint All-Star Race winner has shown he has strength nearly week-in and week-out, but is still searching for that points-paying victory that could lock him in the Chase.
Starting fifth on Sunday, McMurray has a solid shot at earning his bid for the Chase.
Driver #4: Tony Stewart
New Hampshire stats: 3 wins; 14 top 5s; 17 top 10s; Average finish: 11.9
For much of the 2014 season, Tony Stewart and his No. 14 Stewart-Haas Racing team have been fast, but unable to seal the deal to score the win. With two top-fives and five top-10s through the first 18 races of the season, the three-time Sprint Cup Series champion is running out of time to lock himself in the Chase.
Looking for that first win of the season, Stewart hopes for a magical weekend at the venue where he has three wins, 14 top-fives and 17 top-10s in 29 starts.
Stewart qualified fourth for Sunday's race, and if he and crew chief Chad Johnston can keep up with adjustments and play the strategy right, they might be celebrating in Victory Lane at the end of the day.
Driver #5: Matt Kenseth
New Hampshire stats: 1 win; 6 top 5s; 14 top 10s; Average finish: 13.4
Much like Vickers, McMurray and Stewart, Matt Kenseth is still searching for his first victory of the year. Coming off a season in which he scored seven wins, many are surprised last year's Chase runner-up is still winless after 18 races.
However, Kenseth won last year's Chase race at New Hampshire, and has five consecutive finishes of 14th or better at the 1.06-mile track.
The driver of the No. 20 Toyota missed out on the final round of qualifying on Friday, but will start Sunday's race from the 15th spot. The JGR cars have certainly shown strength this weekend, and if Kenseth can put a complete race together he should be in contention for the win at the end of the day.
There are a host of other drivers who look strong this weekend at NHMS, namely Brad Keselowski, Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano. However, these drivers could come in handy later in this stretch of races, so be sure to plan ahead.
As always, these are simply suggestions, so do your research, pick wisely and best of luck. If you put more faith in the Las Vegas odds, check out this week's "Let it Ride" segment from NASCAR Race Hub.