Kyle Busch 2014 Stats: Points Finish 10th, 3 Poles, 1 Win, 9 Top Fives, 15 Top Tens, Average Running Position 16.3, Average Finish 17.6, Laps Led 453, Driver Rating 89.2
Strengths – Kyle Busch is one of the most talented drivers in the series and he’s capable of winning almost anywhere. Look for his best days to come at short tracks, flat tracks, road courses and intermediates.
Weaknesses – Restrictor plate tracks haven’t been the friendliest to Kyle Busch recently. Also I believe he’s still capable of being his own worst enemy on Sunday’s
Track Type Fantasy ValueKey=Elite > High > Moderate >Low
Intermediate Track Fantasy Value – High
Kyle Busch is a very good intermediate track driver. Last season on this track type he scored the 11th most points and had a 14.9 average finish. In the 17 races on this track type he was consistent and finished in the top ten 59% percent of the time and in the top fifteen 71% percent of the time. A typical incident free race for him at these venues in 2014 usually resulted in a finish between 5th and 15th.
For this upcoming season I might very well have his high fantasy value under ranked because there’s a good chance he’ll be more competitive in 2015. This year NASCAR will reduce horsepower which will make these cars drive more like the one’s from the Xfinity Series and he thrives in that division. Other factors which could lead to an uptick in performance are the new Toyota body and his new crew chief.
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Flat Track Fantasy Value – Elite
Flat tracks are good venues for Kyle Busch. He’s capable of performing well at all four venues. At Indy he’s been very consistent and currently has five straight top tens. In two of the last three races at that crown jewel event he’s finished in second. Kyle Busch didn’t have his best season at Pocono in 2014 but I wouldn’t underestimate his fantasy value there. Since 2011 at Pocono as long as he’s avoided trouble he’s finished well. Last season he had results of 12th and 42nd (engine). In 2013 he swept the top ten.
New Hampshire is arguably his best flat track at the moment. Last fall he finished 8th in a heavily damaged Toyota. In the three Loudon races prior to that event he had 3 consecutive second place results. Phoenix has also been a good venue for him. He finished 34th last fall but before he had trouble he looked like a top five contender. In four of the five Phoenix races prior to that event he finished in the top ten.
Short Track Fantasy Value – Elite
Kyle Busch is an elite short track driver. At two of the three venues he’s arguably the best performer in the series. Richmond is unequivocally one of his best tracks. He’s won there four times and has finished in the top five 65% percent of the time. If you’re looking to pick him at Richmond make sure you do so in the spring race because he’s been close to money in the bank in that particular event.
Bristol has also been a stellar venue for him. In twenty starts at Thunder Valley he has five wins and has finished in the top ten 60% percent of the time. Last year Bristol was tough on him but he was competitive in both races. Kyle Busch is always a popular pick there and he’ll likely be many people’s default fantasy pick.
At Martinsville Kyle Busch is winless but I view him as one of the drivers who’s next in line to win. In the last five Martinsville races he has the 6th best driver rating, an 8.6 average running position and a 9.4 average finish. In 40% percent of his Martinsville starts he’s finished in the top five.
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Restrictor Plate Track Fantasy Value – High
Kyle Busch is a good restrictor plate driver but he’s been a volatile option to fantasy racers. Between the two venues he’s recently been better at Talladega. Since 2012 minus this Octobers race and his bump draft gone bad in spring 2013 he has a 5.5 average finish. In spring 2014 he finished 12th. In 2008 Kyle Busch got his only win at Talladega.
Daytona has not been kind to him recently. In the last six races he has the 6th best driver rating but a 22.3 average finish. Historically at Daytona his best event has often been the summer night race.
Road Course Track Fantasy Value – High
Kyle Busch is a good road course racer. He’s won at each venue and has a total of 3 wins on this track type.
Between the two road courses Kyle Busch is much better at Watkins Glen. He’s won there twice and has finished in the top ten 80% percent of the time. In August at the Glen he didn’t have an incident free race and finished 40th. In the 8 races prior to that event he had 8 straight top tens. In 2013 he went to victory lane. In 2012 he would’ve won if the track wasn’t oiled down on the last lap.
Sonoma hasn’t been friendly to Kyle Busch recently. Since his 2008 victory he has yet to finish in the top ten. Last year he finished 25th. In 2013 he finished 35th. His average finish since his win is 24.8.