Chase Elliott – Super Rookie Chase Elliott can’t be counted out at Kentucky. This week he’s on equal footing against the competition and isn’t facing his typical lack of track time disadvantage. This year at 1.5 mile tracks he’s been a fantasy ace. At these venues minus Las Vegas where he ran well but wrecked he has a 7.5 average finish. At Michigan where the lower down force package was first used he finished 2nd. Look for Chase Elliott to be very competitive on Saturday night and be in the mix for a top ten. Performance wise I think he’ll be Top Tier Elite good.
Ryan Blaney – Ryan Blaney should have a strong showing at Kentucky. He’s a good intermediate track driver and these venues have been a strength of his. This year he’s run very well at the two 1.5 mile tracks that I feel have the highest correlation to Kentucky. At Kansas he finished 5th and at Las Vegas he finished 6th. One benefit of being part of a single team organization is that he got to take part in testing at Kentucky.
Ty Dillon – Ty Dillon will be returning to action behind the wheel of the #95 this week. I think there’s a good chance his car is RCR prepared. I’m sure he’s making a start because it will provide RCR extra data with all the track time this week in what is essentially a new track. On Saturday night I expect Dillon to be 15th to 25th place good. In all seven races he’s participated in this season he’s finished within that range. At 1.5 mile tracks this season he has results of 17th (Atlanta) and 20th (Texas)
Chris Buescher – Chris Buescher has not had a good season at 1.5 mile tracks in 2016. For the season at these venues he’s scored the 30th most points, has a 28.6 average finish and a 30.2 average running position. The new lower down force package might help him this weekend. At Michigan where the new rules package was first used he had one of his best races of the season and finished 20th.
Brian Scott – Don’t expect a lot out of Brian Scott at Kentucky. He’s been a fantasy dud and has done nothing to instill confidence at tracks that would correlate to success. At 1.5 mile tracks he’s been a terrible performer this year. He’s scored the 27th most points, has a 27.2 average result and has finished between 27th and 31st in 4 of the 5 races. I think Kansas might prove to have the highest correlation to the reconfigured Kentucky and at that venue he finished 22nd.
Regan Smith – At Kentucky I think you can safely pencil Regan Smith in for a result between the mid-twenties and low thirties. This season at high-speed intermediate tracks he’s finished between 23rd and 35th every race.