Ryan Newman – Ryan Newman should be high on your fantasy NASCAR radar at Talladega. Currently on this track type he has five straight top tens, you can’t say that about anybody else. In fact, this year Ryan Newman is the only driver who’s a perfect 3 for 3 in terms of finishing in the top ten. Over the three combined plate races he has an 8.3 average finish and a 13.0 average running position. Earlier this year at Talladega he escaped with a 9th place finish. Late in the race when the checkered flag was in sight he consistently ran in the top ten. Last fall he had a strong showing and raced his way to a 2nd place finish. Late in the race he teamed up with Denny Hamlin and they drove up to the front of the pack. In spring 2017 he wrecked with 3 laps to go. Since the attrition rate was so high he still managed to finish 25th.
Alex Bowman – Don’t overlook Alex Bowman at Talladega. His average finish is 27.3, but on Sunday I think he has a good chance to finish in the top ten. He has a great car and he’s also proven he can get the job done on this track type. For the season on this track type he has an 11.7 average finish, a 9.3 average running position and has back to back top tens. He finished 10th at Daytona in July, and at Talladega this spring he finished 8th. In addition to finishing 8th he led 26 laps, earned the 5th best driver rating and had a 12th place average running position. For fantasy purposes I don’t view any of this other Talladega starts as relevant.
David Ragan – You don’t want to overlook David Ragan at Talladega. He’s a strong plate racer who’s proven he can get the job done on this track type. At Talladega he’s a former winner and currently has three straight top tens. In 43% percent of his starts here he’s finished in the top ten. This spring he had a strong showing. He finished 6th, earned the 11th best driver rating and finished 6th in Stage #2. Last fall, David Ragan escaped with a 10th place finish. He was involved in the “Big One” with 17 laps to go but he was able to keep going and since it took out so many cars it actually helped him. In spring 2017, Ragan was involved in accident but rebounded to finish 10th. Prior to the race in spring 2017 he was in a cold streak here having six straight results of 24th or worse.