Aric Almirola – Aric Almirola should definitely be on your fantasy NASCAR radar at Las Vegas. He’s run well the last two races here, and in 2018 he’s been a very respectable driver at tracks of this length. This year at these venues minus Texas and Chicagoland he has a 10.6 average finish, an 11.2 average running position and he’s finished between 8th to 13th every race. On Sunday I would look for him to likely finish around that range again. This spring at Las Vegas, Almirola had a good performance. He finished 10th, earned the 10th best driver rating and had a 15th place average running position. In 2017 Almirola had a solid showing. He finished 14th and had a 16th place average running position.
Jimmie Johnson – Jimmie Johnson should be solid at Las Vegas, but don’t set your hopes up too high with him. I would view him as a low-double digits driver who could potentially finish in the top ten. Las Vegas has historically been a good track for him. Since 2012 minus 2015 when he had problems he has a 6.7 average finish and an 8.0 average running position. This spring at Las Vegas, Johnson started in the rear of the field and raced his way up to a 12th place finish. It wasn’t pretty, considering he went a lap down early but he eked out this good result. In 2017, he ran well. He finished 11th, but he was slightly better than his result. Chad Knaus not adapting to the Stage rules hurt him. In the race Johnson finished 7th in Stage #1, 10th in Stage #2 and earned the 8th best driver rating. In 2016 Johnson had a great car and was a serious threat to win. He led the most laps (76), earned the 2nd best driver rating, finished 3rd and had a 3rd place average running position. If it wasn’t for late pit strategy he was likely poised to be the winner. In 2015 Johnson had a fast car but finished 41st after having a flat tire. In that race he led 45 laps and if he didn’t have problems he was going to be one of the drivers to beat. In the three races prior to that he had results of 6th, 6th and 2nd.
Alex Bowman – Don’t overlook Alex Bowman at Las Vegas. I think he should have a competitive afternoon. “Performance Wise” I think he’ll be a low-double digits to mid-teens driver who has potential to sneak in a top ten. At Las Vegas he has three starts under his belt but only his start earlier this year is relevant, and that might still not be the most relevant since it was early in the season. This spring when the checkered flag waved he finished 16th, had a 17th place average running position and earned the 19th best driver rating. In his two prior races when he wasn’t in a competitive situation he finished 43rd (2015) and 37th (2014).