Scouting Report: Indianapolis Brickyard 400

Indianapolis Motor SpeedwayImportant Fantasy Notes for the Indianapolis Brickyard 400:

1) Forget 2008 ever happened. There wasn’t a race that year, it was a battle of who could last 15 laps before their tire blew. If a driver finished poorly in 2008 forgive them and look the other way for your fantasy teams sake this weekend.

2) It’s important to take Pocono seriously this week. Both tracks require competitors to have a superior engine to really succeed. Both have big straightaways and the Tunnel Turn at Pocono is modeled after turns at Indy.

3) Starting position is a must this week. It’s flat out hard to pass at Indy because it’s such a narrow track. As I just mentioned only drivers with superior engines will be able to makes passes this week. Nine of the seventeen races won at Indy have been won by a driver who started in the top five. The farthest back anyone’s won from is 27th.

4) When you make a pick at Indy look for drivers who you think can win the championship. This race is typically won by drivers who win the championship. Four out of the last six races at Indy have been won by the eventual champion. Indy winners who went on to be the eventual champion are Jimmie Johnson, Tony Stewart, Jeff Gordon, Bobby Labonte, and Dale Jarrett. In total 8 of the 17 winners of this race won the championship.

Five Drivers to watch in the Indy Brickyard 400:

Jeff Gordon – Gordon has four wins in the Indianapolis Brickyard 400 including the inaugural race in 1994. Out of the races we’ve seen this year Pocono is the most similar to Indy and of course Jeff Gordon won that race. 

Kevin Harvick – Harvick won at Indy in 2003. Last year Harvick finished second to surprise winner Jamie McMurray. In ten races at this 100 year old track he’s only finished 11th or worse twice. It’s also notable that Harvick has three straight top five finishes at Pocono (similar track).

Tony Stewart – Stewart won at Indy in 2007. In his last two performances at this historic track he’s finished 5th and 3rd. Loop data wise his average running position in the last two races here is ninth. 

Jimmie Johnson – Johnson has won three out of the last five races at Indianapolis Motorspeedway. Before you sign the dotted line and pick Johnson it’s important to note his hero or zero pendulum performances in the Brickyard 400. Beyond his three wins he only has one other top ten and five finishes of 18th or worse.

Matt Kenseth – Kenseth is a big name sleeper who I think will be a contender at Indy. He’s come very close to winning on multiple occasions. When you look at his stats going back to 2002 (omitting 2008, flat tire) his worst finish is 16th, and his average finish is 7.5.

To see the rest of my rankings check out my Indy Fantasy Preview

TheSpread.com Odds to win the Brickyard 400:

Jimmie Johnson 6/1, Carl Edwards 6/1, Kyle Busch 8/1, Kevin Harvick 10/1, Matt Kenseth 10/1, Jeff Gordon 10/1, Juan Pablo Montoya 10/1, Kurt Busch 10/1, Tony Stewart 10/1, Denny Hamlin 12/1

FantasyRacingCheatSheet.com Momentum over the last three races:

1)David Ragan 2)Joey Logano 3)Kasey Kahne 4)Ryan Newman 5)Tony Stewart 6)Jeff Gordon 7)Denny Hamlin 8)Jimmie Johnson 9)Matt Kenseth 10)Kurt Busch

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