Denny Hamlin has won five races this year, the most of any driver in the NASCAR Cup Series. His most recent victory came at Kansas on July 23, giving him one more win than leader Kevin Harvick.
The Cup Series is gearing up for a doubleheader at Michigan, where Hamlin hasn't won since 2011. He's a two-time winner at the two-mile track, but he's winless in his past 17 races there. But that could change Saturday, as he's starting second alongside Joey Logano on the front row.
Because both events are being held this weekend (one on Saturday and one on Sunday), they are both going to be 156-lap, 312-mile races, starting with Saturday's FireKeepers Casino 400.
Here's everything you need to know heading into Saturday's race.
NASCAR at Michigan Information
Date: Saturday, Aug. 8
Start Time: 4 p.m. ET
TV: NBC Sports Network
Live Stream: NBC Sports Live
Kevin Harvick +375 (bet $100 to win $375)
Denny Hamlin +450
Joey Logano +600
Brad Keselowski +800
Kyle Busch +800
Martin Truex Jr. +800
Ryan Blaney +900
Chase Elliott +1000
Aric Almirola +1500
Kurt Busch +2500
Erik Jones +3500
Matt DiBenedetto +3500
Alex Bowman +4000
Clint Bowyer +4000
Christopher Bell +5000
Jimmie Johnson +5000
William Byron +5000
Complete list of odds available at Caesars Palace.
If Hamlin is going to win his first race in Michigan in nearly a decade, then he's likely going to be competing with Harvick and Logano, who have both had recent success at the track.
Although Harvick has four wins this season, he hasn't been to Victory Lane since winning at Indianapolis on July 5. But he's won two of the past three races at Michigan, including the Consumers Energy 400 in August 2019. Harvick is a three-time winner at the track, and he's helped Ford maintain its recent dominance there, with the manufacturer winning the past four races in Brooklyn.
That stretch also includes a win by Logano, who went to Victory Lane at the FireKeepers Casino 400 in June last year for his third career victory at Michigan. Logano won two of the first four races this season, but he hasn't notched a victory since winning at Phoenix on March 8.
Logano is on the pole for Saturday's race, while Harvick will be starting third. Logano won from the pole when he went to Victory Lane at Michigan last year, and in Harvick's past two wins at the track, he started in second and third.
So good starting position has translated to success at Michigan in recent races. Although, this year, the starting order was determined by a random draw (in groups based on owner points) as NASCAR continues to operate without qualifying, one of the modifications made during the coronavirus pandemic.
While Logano, Hamlin and Harvick are among the favorites to win at Michigan, there are several top drivers looking to end some rough stretches.
Kyle Busch is still winless in 2020, and according to NASCAR.com, his 20-race winless streak to open the season matches his longest such streak since joining Joe Gibbs Racing in 2008, as it also happened in 2017. Although Busch has six straight top-10 finishes at Michigan, he's only won there once in his career—and that was nine years ago.
Hendrick Motorsports drivers have also struggled in recent weeks, as none of them (Alex Bowman, William Byron, Chase Elliott and Jimmie Johnson) have a top-five finish in the past five races (not including the non-points All-Star Race at Bristol, which Elliott won).
However, Hendrick hasn't had much recent Michigan success, either, as Jeff Gordon was the last driver to win for the team at the track in 2014, when it swept the pair of races, with Johnson winning the other.