Charlotte Coca Cola 600 Fantasy Preview and PicksA= Really, Really Good Pick

Matt Kenseth – There’s lots of reasons to like Kenseth this week. 1) He’s won the Coke 600 before 2) He won at Texas (similar track) 3) Four straight top tens at Charlotte 4) His driving style is conducive for surviving 600 miles 5) He won at Dover last week 6) Won the pole at Las Vegas. What’s not to like? (Yahoo A Driver)

Kyle Busch – Busch is the uncrowned unvictorious king of Charlotte Motor Speedway. In the last seven races he hasn’t finished lower than 8th and his average finish is 4.14. If you pick him cross your fingers and hope Joe Gibbs Racing finally fixed their engine problems. (Yahoo A Driver)

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A- = Really Good Pick

Carl Edwards – Dating back to 2007 Edwards has only led 3 laps at Charlotte. His record here doesn’t scream he’ll win the race but he’s a sure beat to be in the mix. On 1.5 mile intermediates this season he’s finished first and third. (Yahoo A Driver)

Jimmie Johnson – In recent years Johnson has been better in the fall Charlotte race. In the Coke 600 he’s found mild success in recent years but bad finishes have hurt him. Last year him and Hamlin played bumper cars with each other and in 2009 he blew up late in the race (was a top five car). Here’s his Yahoo! race chart for the skeptics. Did you know that Jimmie Johnson has led laps in every Charlotte race since his pre-rookie year! It may not be called Lowes Motor Speedway anymore but it’s still his house. (Yahoo A Driver)

Kasey Kahne – Kahne has been as good as nearly anyone since Richmond. Charlotte has always been a good track for Kahne. He’s won the All-Star race, the Coca Cola 600, and the fall race. Vickers has been extremely competitive at Charlotte so there’s no reason Kahne can’t be as well. (Yahoo B Driver)

Click HERE to check out my Charlotte Scouting Report

B+ = Good Pick

Greg Biffle – Don’t bet against this Roush car this week. He was extremely competitive at Las Vegas (fuel issues) and at Texas he finished 4th. When you take away his fuel issue at Las Vegas earlier this year he’s been a top five car every 1.5 mile race since Kansas last fall. (Yahoo A Driver)

Clint Bowyer – If you want to know how good Bowyer will do at Charlotte just get out your dart board. His finishes are all over the place. It’s about equally mixed with top tens, twentieths, and really bad days. Recently Bowyer finished second at Texas so there’s lots of value here. (Yahoo B Driver)

Tony Stewart – Stewart has never had a top ten finish at Charlotte in the COT! His Charlotte finishes since 2008 have all been between 11th and 21st. Stewart was competitive at Las Vegas and Texas so don’t overlook him, this is the perfect week for his first Charlotte COT top ten (Yahoo A Driver)

Kevin Harvick – I’m really not expecting huge things out of Harvick this week. Charlotte simply isn’t that friendly to him. Last season he finished 8th and 11th. His first race at Charlotte Motor Speedway was his best finish ever (2nd), and it remains his only top five. (Yahoo A Driver)

Marcos Ambrose – SLEEPER ALERT, on the two 1.5 mile tracks NASCAR’s visited this year Ambrose has recorded finishes of 6th and 4th. This sleeper has some definite potential this week. (Yahoo B Driver)

David Reutimann – His Coke 600 win doesn’t boost his fantasy racing value in my mind at all, remember it did rain. In other non-rain related Charlotte races he’s finished 15th, 9th, and 5th. (Yahoo B Driver)

Denny Hamlin – Hamlin has had his fair share of engine problems this year so it might be dangerous picking him this week. Hamlin’s had some really good cars in the past at Charlotte and there’s no reason to think he won’t again. Last fall he finished 4th, and in the fall 2009 race he had the car to beat before his engine blew up! In the Coca Cola 600 Hamlin’s best finishes are a pair of ninths in 2006 & 2007. (Yahoo A Driver)

Ryan Newman – In three out of the last four Charlotte races Newman’s finished 11th or better. So far in 2011 Newman’s been very successful on similar tracks. He finished 5th at Las Vegas and 14th at Texas. Unfortunately things have been looking bad for him in recent weeks. Momentum matters in fantasy NASCAR and I would expect a low to mid teens finish. (Yahoo B Driver)

B = A Tier Below The Good Picks

Brian Vickers – SLEEPER ALERT, this is one of his best tracks. The stats show otherwise but I watch the races and trust me he can be pretty good here. (Yahoo B Driver)

Jeff Gordon – Gordon has had lots of recent success at Charlotte but he’s been terrible on intermediate tracks lately. Dating back to Charlotte last year the best Gordon’s finished on a 1.5 tri oval is 23rd (four races with finishes of 23rd, 23rd, 36th, and 37th). (Yahoo A Driver)

Mark Martin – I think Martin’s going to start turning things around this season soon. At worst he’s a top 15 car, but I think there’s lots of upside this week. He knows how to keep a car under him for 600 miles. (Yahoo B Driver)

Joey Logano – If Logano was running better this year I would definitely rate him higher. Statistically he’s very good at Charlotte. In four races he has a 8.5 average finish at “The Beast Of The Southeast”. (Yahoo B Driver)

Jamie McMurray – McMurray finished first and second last year. It’s hard to do better than that. What I don’t like is that in the last three 1.5 intermediate track races he hasn’t finished in the top fifteen and he hasn’t led a lap. (Yahoo B Driver)

B- = You Can Pencil Them In For Around 20th

Jeff Burton – In 2008 Burton finished sixth and first at Charlotte. In the last four points paying races here his average finish is a non-skewed 21.75 with a best finish of 14th and a worst finish of 28th. (Yahoo B Driver)

Martin Truex Jr. – Last year Treux finished 1st and 2nd …. on All-Star weekend. In the actual races he finished 15th and 23rd. He’s been very competitive in recent weeks but he still finds lots of trouble. Do you think he can make it through 600 miles without trouble? (Yahoo B Driver)

AJ Allmendinger – There’s potential here this week but it’s not stellar. In the last three 1.5 mile tri oval races Allmendinger’s come home with finishes of 19th, 19th and 14th. (Yahoo B Driver)

Paul Menard – Last season in the Coca Cola 600 Menard came home with an eighth place finish. That’s pretty good for a C List driver, but I don’t think he’ll duplicate that feat again. (Yahoo C Driver)

C+ = Proceed With Caution

Kurt Busch – Busch is the defending champion but last fall at Charlotte he was total junk and finished 30th. His Yahoo! race chart tells the full story. He’s also been junk on the track in recent weeks. Proceed with caution. (Yahoo A Driver)

Juan Pablo Montoya – As viewers know I like Montoya, but I’m not gonna like him this week. He’s got a ton of bad finishes here. Last fall he finished 11th and in the 2009 Coke 600 he finished eighth. Beyond that his past history is pretty bad here. (Yahoo B Driver)

C = I’m Not Picking Them

Dale Earnhardt Jr. – All the fan voting in the world can’t help him out this week. In the last five Charlotte races his average finish is 33rd. If you want to pick him like you voted for him then be confident in his 8th and 9th place tri oval showings in 2011. (Yahoo B Driver)

Brad Keselowski – Should the fact that he raced his way into the All-Star race effect your opinion? Nope, his 26th at Auto Club Speedway, 26th at Las Vegas and 18th at Texas should though. Despite some recent success this team hasn’t turned anything around. (Yahoo B Driver)

David Ragan – David Ragan is a tough driver to have on a fantasy roster. Even when he does do good he messes up. This week he’s got 600 miles to make mistakes. It’s best to avoid him IMO. If you want to pick him here’s the spin, last fall he finished 10th and statistically this is one of his better tracks. (Yahoo C Driver)