There’s nothing like a good old fashioned restrictor plate race to shake up your Fantasy NASCAR league standings! The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series is at Talladega Superspeedway this weekend, and if this year’s Daytona 500 was any indication, we should be in for a good show. It’s worth noting that the 2018 Great American Race ended with just ten cars on the lead lap, and four of the top 10 qualifiers in that race also finished inside that mark. Talladega and Daytona are tracks where starting position really doesn’t matter.
For what it’s worth, Kevin Harvick is on the pole for this weekend’s GEICO 500 and the full starting lineup for Sunday’s race at Talladega can be found by clicking here. There were two practice sessions on Friday, but really those speeds don’t mean a whole lot here (in my opinion). Still, you can see those results here: Practice #1 — Happy Hour. Our in-depth practice notes for each of those sessions can be found here: Practice #1 — Happy Hour.
Final Top 25 Rankings for Talladega
1. Joey Logano – Starts 9th – DraftKings Price: $10,300 – FanDuel Price: $12,000
Looking purely at a driver rating standpoint, Joey Logano had the 2nd-best car in this year’s Daytona 500 behind his teammate Ryan Blaney’s #12 Ford. That really shouldn’t be that surprising, though, because if we’ve learned anything over the last year and a half, it’s that you can’t really bet against the Fords on these superspeedways. Anyway, Logano is worth consideration in fantasy for Sunday’s GEICO 500, but at the same time, you can’t overlook his terrible performances in the spring race here at Talladega recently; in the last six Talladega spring races, Logano’s best finish has been 25th, while he’s came home 4th, 1st, and 1st in the last three fall events. Obviously he knows how to race here, and Logano is likely to break out of his spring race slump here sooner rather than later. This #22 team finally got out front at Richmond last weekend, which should give them an added boost of confidence heading into this weekend’s race.
2. Kevin Harvick – Starts 1st – DraftKings Price: $9,800 – FanDuel Price: $12,300
Kevin Harvick has just one victory at Talladega Superspeedway, but his career average finish of 15.4 ranks 3rd-best among active drivers with more than two starts, so it’s safe to stay he knows how to stay out of trouble here. Another number to pay attention when it comes to Harvick is his DNF total, which is just three of the course of 34 starts. Looking at this year’s Daytona 500, Harvick ended up wrecking but he still had a pretty good car, as he is in a Ford and they have a definite advantage on these superspeedways right now. As far as Talladega goes, Harvick hasn’t been flashy here lately, but he hasn’t finished worse than 23rd since the 2013 season and he’s posted a top 10 result in four of his last eight starts here. He likes to hang out at the back of the pack for much of the race, but with “Happy” starting on the pole for Sunday’s GEICO 500, I wouldn’t be surprised if he tried to stay out front all day long.
3. Brad Keselowski – Starts 10th – DraftKings Price: $10,700 – FanDuel Price: $12,100
If it’s possible for a driver to be “Elite” at a restrictor plate track, that is exactly the case when it comes to Brad Keselowski at Talladega. BK is a five-time winner here at ‘Dega, which is just one victory behind Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and the tie for the most at the track. Perhaps the most impressive thing with Keselowski, though, is that he’s won those five races in just eighteen starts thus far–meaning he’s gone to victory lane in 27.8% of his starts here. Kez finished 7th and 1st in the two Talladega races last season and should be up front for most of the day on Sunday, too, especially with how fast the Fords are at these superspeedways right now.