Fantasy Preview: Camping World RV Sales 301

July 9, 2014 No Comments

1677257476001_2545183042001_nascar-nscs-lou-rr922Brian Wiggins, Senior Writer 

For the first time this season, NASCAR visits the “Magic Mile” of New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

New Hampshire is one of the more unique tracks on the Sprint Cup schedule. It’s a flat, one-mile oval that looks simple, but can give drivers and crews fits when it comes to setting up a race winning car.

Many call this track a Martinsville Speedway on steroids, meaning that there are many similar characteristics between the two tracks, just at a faster pace.

Being a flat track, power to launch off the corners onto the long straightaways is key to winning at New Hampshire. However, if you can’t get the car to handle properly with the power, you’re going to be mired deep in the pack throughout much of the day.

The “Magic Mile” can also lead to surprise winners. Part-time driver, Brian Vickers, went to victory lane in this race one year ago.

Different players were at the front last weekend at Daytona, and there very well could be this weekend at Loudon.

*Roster based on the Yahoo! Fantasy Auto Racing system*

‘A’ Drivers 

Jimmie Johnson: It’s that time of the year when Jimmie Johnson is a favorite to win seemingly every week. In twenty-four career starts at New Hampshire, Johnson has recorded three wins, the last of which was July,2010 when he beat Kurt Busch. Even if Johnson doesn’t win, he’s a sure-bet at a top-10 finish. In those twenty-four starts, Johnson has finished in the top-10 seventeen times. With how strong Hendrick Motorsports has been as of late, you better have at least one of their cars in your lineup.

Clint Bowyer: There’s no getting around it, Clint Bowyer needs a win. His points may be able to get him into the Chase Grid, but a win would lock him into the postseason. Over his career in Cup, Bowyer has proven to be one of the best flat-track drivers on the circuit. New Hampshire Motor Speedway (NHMS) has been one of Bowyer’s strongest tracks, positing two career wins including his first back in September,2007. His Michael Waltrip Racing (MWR) teammate Brian Vickers won this race last year, so maybe there’s still some NHMS magic in the MWR shop.

‘B’ Drivers 

Brian Vickers: How can you not include the defending winner of the race in your fantasy picks? Sure, Vickers has had a little rough patch over the month of June. However, he is coming off a second-place finish in a strange race at Daytona last Sunday. As stated with Bowyer, MWR has a strong flat-track program. While Rodney Childers is no longer atop the pit box for Vickers, don’t count him out this weekend.

Ryan Newman: Quietly, Ryan Newman is having quite the season. He sits eighth in traditional Sprint Cup point standings and his No.31 Richard Childress Racing (RCR) team is improving by the week. However, he has yet to win a race. What better time than this weekend at NHMS. Newman’s last win at the “Magic Mile” came in 2011, making three career wins at the track. Like Bowyer and Vickers, Newman is one of the best flat-track drivers on the circuit. If he wants a win to lock him into the Chase, this would be the best weekend for that.

Denny Hamlin: Remember that race back in 2012 where Hamlin called his shot, took it back and still won the race at NHMS? That’s exactly why he should be on your fantasy roster this weekend. NHMS is in many ways a bigger Martinsville Speedway, a track that Hamlin has found success at many times in the past. While he already has a win that puts him into the Chase Grid, missing the Auto Club Speedway race back in March has the No.11 further down in the points than he’d like. A second win on Sunday would give him and his team extra comfort as the race to the Chase winds down.

Paul Menard: He’s never won at NHMS, but don’t rule out Menard. The driver of the No.27 is having the best season of his career and currently in the Chase Grid. With Newman as his teammate, this could be a strong weekend for Menard. He might not win, but he’s almost a sure thing for a top-fifteen finish given his history this season.

‘C’ Drivers 

Jeff Burton: He hasn’t won at NHMS since that day in 2000 when he led all 300 laps, but that doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be on your fantasy team this weekend. As stated with his MWR teammates, the flat track program for this organization is topnotch. Burton is easily the best-bet for the C-drivers this weekend outside of Kyle Larson, who you’ve probably started too much thus far.

Michael Annett: Anybody notice who has been running up near the top-twenty for about the past month? That’s right, it’s Michael Annett in Tommy Baldwin Jr.’s Chevrolet. Quietly, the driver of the No.7 has improved much like he did in the Nationwide series when driving for Richard Petty Motorsports. Annett might not be a threat to win or a top-ten, but he’s more than likely going to finish and finish well to give you a shot at winning the week.

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