NASCAR's Texas Two-Step: Samsung Mobile 500 Fantasy Advice

Ashley McCubbinAnalyst IApril 15, 2010

FORT WORTH, TX - NOVEMBER 08:  Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 DuPont Chevrolet, and Kurt Busch, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Dodge, lead the field to a restart in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Dickies 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on November 8, 2009 in Fort Worth, Texas.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Track Stats:

Name: Texas Motor Speedway

Race Date: April 17, 2010

Location: Fort Worth, TX

Length: 1.5 miles

Banking in turns: 24 degrees

Banking on the straights: five degrees

Grandstand Seats: 159,585

Tickets/track info: http://www.texasmotorspeedway.com/ or (817) 215-8500

April 2009 Winner: Jeff Gordon

Gordon beat teammate Jimmie Johnson to the line by 0.378 seconds to take the victory. It was his first win ever at Texas Motor Speedway in 17 tries and it ended a 47 race winless streak.

Top 10

1. Jeff Gordon

2. Jimmie Johnson

3. Greg Biffle

4. Tony Stewart

5. Matt Kenseth

6. Mark Martin

7. Juan Pablo Montoya

8. Kurt Busch

9. Jeff Burton

10. Carl Edwards

November 2009 Winner:
Kurt Busch

The November race was a battle of the Busch brothers as the two led a combined 321 of the 334 total laps. In the end, Kurt Busch was the top brother as Kyle Busch ran out of fuel with three laps to go.

Driver Rating from 2009 Samsung Mobile 500

NASCAR.com has a driver rating system that is suppose to help in picking who is a good fantasy choice. Their formula combines the following categories: wins, finishes, top 15 finishes, average running positions while on lead lap, average speed under green, fastest lap, most laps led and lead-lap finish. The maximum points one driver can obtain for one race is 150 points.

For more specific information and further understanding, please visit nascar.com.

Here are the top 10 drivers and their ratings following the 2009 Samsung Mobile 500

1. Jeff Gordon with 134.0

2. Greg Biffle with 126.4

3. Tony Stewart with 124.5

4. Matt Kenseth with 118.7

5. David Reuitmann with 105.8

6. Carl Edwards with 103.2

7. Jimmie Johnson with 97.3

8. Kurt Busch with 96.6

9. Jeff Burton with 94.6

10. Kyle Busch with 94.0

Good Picks:

Matt Kenseth

Matt Kenseth is a consistent driver across the map that is known for being good at the intermediate tracks. This should come as no surprise, as Kenseth has the highest average finish of active drivers at Texas of 9.3. In 15 races at Texas, he has one win, seven top fives and 10 top 10s.

When you look at the intermediate tracks overall, Kenseth ranks seventh in earning points last year when all 17 races are totaled (2213) with an average finish of 13.4, six top fives and eight top 10s.

Jeff Gordon

Jeff Gordon has been in contention to win at the intermediate tracks this year (most notably, Las Vegas) and is looking to get back to victory lane. Texas is a good place for him to do that as he won last year and it was the race that put him on the map to contend for the title.

His intermediate track success is proven when you look at his overall intermediate tracks stats from last year. Gordon ranks highest in earning points last year when all 17 races are totaled (2667) with an average finish of 6.1, 10 top fives and 14 top 10s.

However, even though he won last year, his average finish doesn’t rank in the top 10 among active drivers at Texas. In 18 races at Texas, Gordon has one win, seven top fives, nine top 10s and an average finish of 15.1.

Denny Hamlin

Denny Hamlin is a driver you have to take your chances on picking. He does have the second highest average finish at Texas among active drivers, however he may not run as well as normal as a result of the knee surgery he had a couple weeks ago. Hamlin went against the odds at Phoenix and completed the whole race so possibly this is where he’ll start getting back to running well.

In nine races at Texas, Hamlin has no wins, three top fives, six top 10s and an average finish of 10.6.

When you look at the intermediate tracks overall, Hamlin ranks ninth in earning points last year when all 17 races are totaled (2152) with an average finish of 14.5, five top fives and eight top 10s.

Jimmie Johnson

If it isn’t obvious by the career win total of 50 already, the four championships and the domination that Johnson is known for that he should on your radar then let me throw some stats at you.

Johnson’s average finish of 10.8 ranks third highest among active drivers and in 13 races at Texas, he has one win, six top fives and nine top 10s.

When you look at the intermediate tracks overall, Johnson ranks third in earning points last year when all 17 races are totaled (2386) with an average finish of 12.6, seven top fives and 11 top 10s.

Interesting Stats:

In last two races, Kurt Busch has gained the most points at Texas (337) while Matt Kenseth ranks second (325) and Gordon ranks third (324).

If you go back further, however, Kenseth has gained the most points at Texas when you combine the last five or even 10 races.

Story to Watch: Spoiler

There are two reasons why you have to watch for the case of the spoiler.

The first reason is that this’ll be the first intermediate track the spoiler has been run on. How will it handle? How will it affect the racing? The questions will finally start to be answered when the Sprint Cup cars hit the track Friday.

The second reason is that lately, late cautions have produced unexpected winners due to pit strategy. One driver may seem to have locked in the bag and had led the most laps, though a late race caution or a possible three green-white-checkered finishes may spoil their win and hand it to another driver.


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