Photo Credit: NASCAR
Photo Credit: NASCAR

Kyle Busch – Kyle Busch will be a popular fantasy NASCAR pick at Bristol. Between NASCAR’s top 3 divisions he’s won here 16 times. In the Sprint Cup Series he’s a five-time champion and has finished in the top ten 62% percent of the time. Recently at Bristol he’s been strong but all too often he’s been coming home with misleading finishes. Last August Kyle Busch had a great car and a strong case could be made that it was the best. He started 2nd, earned the 2nd best driver rating, had a 4th place average running position, finished 8th and led a race high 192 laps. It should be noted his finish deserves an asterisk mark because his race wasn’t incident free. While he was running in 3rd on lap 344 he made an unexpected pit stop for a loose wheel. That dropped him down a lap and back to the mid-teens. That wasn’t his last problem. After he rebounded and was running in 3rd with 69 laps to go he was busted speeding on pit road. In spring 2015 he missed the race due to injury. In 2014 he was competitive in both races. In August 2014 he had an extremely fast car. He started in 4th and raced his way into the lead on lap 55. Then shortly after he took the lead he paced the field for 8 laps before the caution came out. During that round of pit stops he was busted speeding on pit road which sent him to the back. Then while he was back in traffic on lap 125 a “Big One” ensued and he was caught up in the carnage. Strength wise he was likely top five good. In spring 2014 he had one of the strongest cars but walked away with a 29th place finish. He led 73 laps but was burned by a caution around the mid-point that dropped him from the front to the mid-twenties. Later in the race something was wrong with his car after he hit a piece of debris. To top off his evening he spun and got clipped by Kurt Busch. (Yahoo A Driver)

Carl Edwards – Carl Edwards will be a contender at Bristol. Performance wise over the last five races a solid case could be made that he’s been the strongest performer. In the last four Bristol races Edwards has the best driver rating, best average running position (7.5), 4th best average finish (9.8) and has led the 5th most laps (238). Last fall he had a great showing. He started 3rd, earned the 4th best driver rating, finished 7th and led 74 laps. I will note his result is misleading. He had a strong car over long runs and was likely top 3 good but while he was running in 2nd on lap 354 he made an unexpected pit stop for a flat tire. Last spring he was also extremely good but walked away with a misleading result when he wrecked with 7 laps to go while running in 2nd. From that race it should be noted Edwards finished 24th, had a 5th place average running position, earned the 6th best driver rating and led 86 laps. In 2014 he had a great season at Bristol and scored the most points between the combined events. In August 2014 he had a solid race and ran up front nearly all evening. He started 3rd, finished 7th, had a 9th place average running position and earned the 8th best driver rating. In March 2014 under the lights Carl Edwards didn’t have the best car but he raced his way to victory lane. In the race he started 12th, had a 9th place average running position and led 78 laps. In the race two key factors came into play for him. The first was attrition. The other was pit strategy because it got him to the front when it mattered. (Yahoo B Driver)

Further Recommended Reading – Bristol Front Runner Rankings, Bristol Scouting Report, Bristol DraftKing Points August 2015, Bristol DraftKings Points April 2015

Kevin Harvick – Kevin Harvick will be tough to beat at Bristol. I also like his fantasy value because he might be somewhat off people’s radar because he’s only finished in the top ten once in the last 9 races. Last August he was very strong and likely had the best car at the end. He finished 2nd and earned the 6th best driver rating. It should be noted his race wasn’t incident free. In order to earn his good result Harvick had to overcome two speeding penalties he incurred while running in the top seven. In spring 2015 he had one of the strongest cars but his race wasn’t incident free. On lap 310 Johnson spun Burton and that led to Harvick wrecking because he wasn’t able to avoid the carnage. At the time of the incident he was running in 3rd. Prior to wrecking he led 184 laps. Despite his problem he still earned the 4th best driver rating. In August 2014 he had a great performance. He started on the pole, earned the 4th best driver rating, had a 5th place average running position, finished 11th and led 75 laps. In the race he performed better than his result. His chance at getting a good finish was dashed on lap 432 under yellow when he got a speeding penalty while running around 7th. If his race was incident free he likely would’ve finished in the top five. In spring 2014 he also had a strong showing but walked away with a poor result. With about 50 laps to go his day went up in smoke, literally when his engine blew up while he was running around 5th. Despite not completing about a tenth of the race he still earned the 8th best driver rating, had an 8th place average running position and led 28 laps. (Yahoo A Driver)

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