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My Fastest Four Drivers:
1) Kevin Harvick – Harvick can essentially take Pocono off because Blaney isn’t going to put up a challenge. At Watkins Glen things could get hairy for him going up against Juan Pablo Montoya but Happy is also a former winner at the Glen. I think Harvick will pull off the upset in this circumstance. Montoya has had plenty of problems closing races for a while now. At Michigan I think he can beat Kyle Busch by seven positions. Harvick is my overall predicted winner and I think he’ll finish the best among the drivers who I think will get to the Fastest Four.
2) Kurt Busch – Out of all the drivers who I think will get to the Fastest Four Kurt Busch has the easiest path to Bristol. At Pocono he’ll beat Bobby Labonte by at least 20 positions. At Watkins Glen I think the Infineon winner will once again be victorious over Clint Bowyer. At Michigan I think he’ll beat Martin Truex pretty easily. At Bristol I think he’ll finish somewhere around 7th place.
3) Jimmie Johnson - At Pocono I think he’ll beat Regan Smith by about 10 positions. At Watkins Glen he’s up against Kasey Kahne but Johnson is a better driver at the Glen. At Michigan I’m predicting Johnson will be up against Stewart and this could potentially be a tough matchup for him, but I give Johnson the edge once again. At Bristol I think he could finish anywhere from 5th to 15th.
4) Denny Hamlin – Out of the drivers who I have reaching the Fastest Four Denny Hamlin goes through the most big names. At Pocono he’s up against Vickers. Vickers is pretty good at Pocono but he’s certainly not in Denny Hamlin’s league. At Watkins Glen I have Denny Hamlin pulling off the upset against a hard charging Jeff Gordon. Gordon’s best finish at Watkins Glen since 2002 is ninth. At Michigan Hamlin is up against Carl Edwards but once again I’m giving Hamlin the edge. In his last three Michigan races he’s finished 1st, 2nd, and 1st. I view Denny Hamiln as the best driver at Bristol who’s never won before. I have him finishing fourth mainly because something bad seems to happen to him all to often at the Bristol.
First Round Potential Bracket Busters:
Paul Menard vs Juan Pablo Montoya : Montoya finished 7th earlier this year but Menard is coming off a win at Pocono and a 14th place finish earlier this year.
Kyle Busch vs David Reutimann : Busch has never finished well in the August Pocono race. David Reutimann might very well pull off the biggest upset in the first round.
Martin Truex Jr. vs Greg Biffle : In this first round matchup I’m picking Truex Jr. to move on. Biffle is ripe for a an upset and Truex has finished 10th and 9th in his last two races at Pocono.
Tony Stewart vs Joey Logano : I think Joey Logano could easily be a bracket buster for many in the first round. He’s extremely capable of pulling off the upset in the first round.