NASCAR

FOX WATCH: Five who thrive at Chicagoland

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Sometimes numbers can speak louder than words. Which is why each week, FOXSports.com takes a close look at NASCAR's stat book and comes up with five drivers to keep an eye on. Unless otherwise noted, the stats are for a driver's career and include all Winston Cup races at Chicagoland Speedway. These are our picks, but what do you think? Let us know in the , then watch Fox Sports Net's on Sunday at 10:30 a.m. ET to see how your pick stands up against our experts.
Chicagoland Speedway
Driver Races Wins Top 5 Top 10 Poles Times led Laps led
2 2 2 2 0 8 142
COMMENT: This isn¿t exactly rocket science. There have been exactly two Winston Cup races at Chicagoland. And, let¿s see, has won both of them. So until someone else steps up and demonstrated that they can win at this race track, we¿re sticking with the only champion it¿s ever known.
1 0 1 1 0 1 2
COMMENT: Now, when there have been only two races at a given track, it¿s hard to build up much insider information. Maybe that¿s why the young guns dominated last year¿s race at the track; Harvick, Johnson, and accounted for four of the top six spots. This time around, look for Johnson to improve on that fourth-place finish.
2 0 0 0 0 0 0
COMMENT: Admittedly, Burton hasn¿t been all that successful at either of the two Winston Cup affairs at Chicagoland. But he does have back-to-back third-place showings in the two Busch races at the track. If he can just show up on Sundays, he has what it takes to win in the Windy City.
1 0 1 1 1 2 87
COMMENT: We tend to like Newman at tracks that run a little faster than most. That¿s certainly the case here, where there¿s still plenty of grip. He won the pole for the Busch race in 2001 and the Cup race last year; if he manages that trick again, he¿ll extend his circuit-leading total to five for the season. But we¿re sure he¿d rather save his celebrating for the weekend.
2 0 0 2 0 0 0
COMMENT: With six top fives and six finishes outside of the top 20, it¿s been an all-or-nothing kind of year for Busch. He followed up his win at Michigan with a 28th and a 36th, so it¿s about time for an ¿all¿ week. And he has finished in the top 10 in both of the two races at Chicagoland.

Last week

FOX Watch: How We're Doing
This Week Season
Wins 0 4
Top 5s 0 20
Top 10s 1 39
DNFs 1 12
First our dark-horse pick (Mike Wallace) got caught up in the Mini One. Then the rest of our drivers got caught out on the track with too many laps left in the race when that little fuel light came on. The result? Another winless week for FOX Watch. But, hey, how many of you had dethroning the DEI folks in a restrictor-plate race? Unless you¿re related to the Winston Cup rookie, you¿re lying through your teeth if your hand is presently raised. And if you throw out the four drivers who were able to make it to the finish line without needing an extra visit to pit road, we¿d have racked up another top five and three top 10s. OK, so we¿re rationalizing a bit here. But you¿d rationalize too after a week like ours.

2002 Chicagoland 400 Top 10

1. Kevin Harvick (29), Chevrolet
2. Jeff Gordon (24), Chevrolet
3. Tony Stewart (20), Pontiac
4. Jimmie Johnson (48), Chevrolet
5. Ryan Newman (12), Ford
6. Kurt Busch (97), Ford
7. Bill Elliott (9), Dodge
8. Robby Gordon (31), Chevrolet
9. Mark Martin (6), Ford
10. Dale Earnhardt Jr. (8), Chevrolet

Past Chicagoland 400 Champions

2002 Kevin Harvick, Chevrolet, 136.832 mph
2001 Kevin Harvick, Chevrolet, 131.759 mph
Tagged: Kurt Busch

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