And the time crunch begins. NASCAR decided to go with a new schedule format at Pocono Raceway this weekend, as they held two practice sessions on Saturday and then held qualifying this morning (Sunday) with the race scheduled to start just a couple of hours later. And with track position being so important here at “The Tricky Triangle,” that means Fantasy NASCAR players have even less time to get all of their picks in. Therefore, this post is shorter than it typically is other weeks, simply because you have less time to read it, and I still need time to enter my picks.
DRIVER is on the pole for today’s Overton’s 400. The full starting lineup can be found by . As far as practice goes, the speeds from those two sessions can be found here: Practice #1 — Happy Hour, and, as always, our in-depth practice notes can be found here: Practice #1 — Happy Hour. I also included practice ranks for my top 15 drivers below, just for quick reference.
Final Top 25 Ranking For The Pocono 2 Overton’s 400
Kyle Busch had the best car the last time we were here at Pocono, and, surprise surprise, he has the best car this time around to. Rowdy led 100 of the 160 laps here last time around and should be able to lead for quite a few today as well. Unfortunately, the late caution screwed Kyle last month and he ended up finishing 9th, and even worse is the fact that that is his best finish here at “The Tricky Triangle” since 2008. Even worse, he hasn’t had a top 5 here since 2011. With that being said, my strategy in Fantasy NASCAR is to always go with the fastest car in the field, and that’s Kyle Busch this weekend. The only concern you should have is what kind of strategy other drivers are going to have, and how that’s going to affect Kyle Busch. It’s a lot easier to wreck here when back in traffic as opposed to leading.
The #78 team has a couple of things going against them this weekend. First, they’re missing two tire changers because of a questionable suspension handed down by Joe Gibbs Racing. And second, they were penalized 45 total minutes in practice on Saturday (out of 120 total). Luckily–well, not really, as it happens every week–Truex still had plenty of speed, and don’t forget he’s had one of the best cars here at Pocono over the last two years. Like Kyle Busch, though, Truex has had problems finishing the races. If nothing goes wrong today, expect the #78 inside the top 5 when it’s all said and done.
The #4 Ford wasn’t blazing fast during the practice sessions on Saturday, but when’s the last time you could actually say it was? Harvick still has a good, consistent car, though, and that’s going to pay dividends during the race. “Happy” has finished 9th or better in five of the last six races here at Pocono, and three of those races ended with Harvick in the runner-up position–including the race here last month. He’s one of the safest Fantasy NASCAR picks at Pocono this weekend.