The NASCAR Sprint Cup makes its next stop at Bristol Motor Speedway's half-mile coliseum for the St. Patrick’s Day edition of the Food City 500. We looked at past performances, season trends, and spoke to team contacts to give the internet’s best prediction of how the field should finish.
When: Sunday, March 17; 1:13 p.m./et.
Weather: Showers with a daytime high around 66; wind out of the SW at 9 mph. Chance of precipitation is 40%.
The Track: Bristol Motor Speedway
Bristol Motor Speedway is a half-mile oval with high-banking the entire way around. The corners are banked 36 degrees with 16 degree banking on the straight-aways. This is a track where very few drivers have been able to dominate. Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch, Kurt Busch, and Jeff Gordon have all had decent success at the track, but that status can change with one nudge to the left-rear bumper.
Key to Race: DON'T BRING YOUR BEST CAR
The Bullring inBristolhas been described a flying an airplane in a gymnasium. There will be no cars that escape Sunday's race without at least a little sheet metal damage. Sunday’s race is one of the most entertaining races on the circuit for fans and most frustrating for drivers. Expect tempers to flare as the cars bump and bang. The driver that wins the race will be the one with the best set of pit stops and the most luck.
44 cars will attempt to qualify for 43 spots.
Fantasy Cheat Sheet:
No. 2 Brad Keselowski: Keselowski has won two of the past three races at Bristol. There is no reason to think he can’t make it three-out-of-four.
No. 48 Jimmie Johnson: Johnson had one of the fastest cars in the past eight Bristol races and won the 2010 spring race. He will be tough to beat.
No. 18 Kyle Busch: Rowdy has had one of the top cars in 15 of the past 16 races at Bristol. There is a good chance he can take the checkers again on Sunday.
No. 20 Matt Kenseth: Kenseth has 17 top 10 finishes in 26 career starts and has led 719 laps during the last 14 races at the track. He is a great option on Sunday.
No. 11 Denny Hamlin: Hamlin won last year’s Night Race at Bristol and has led 352 laps in the past 12 races at the track. He should have the No. 11 inside the top five when the dust settles.
6 to 10
No. 24 Jeff Gordon: Gordon has five wins and has led over 2,400 laps at Bristol during his career. He should be in the top 10 once again on Sunday.
No. 99 Carl Edwards: Edwards won two of the last 12 races at Bristol and has placed in the top 16 in 11 of the past 13 races at the track. He is a great pick.
No. 14 Tony Stewart: Stewart has led 772 laps in the past 14 races at Bristol. He will just miss the top five this visit to beautiful Tennessee.
No. 29 Kevin Harvick: Harvick has 12 top 10 finishes in 24 career races at Bristol. He is once again a driver to consider.
No. 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.: Junior has been decent at Bristol in his career. In his last 22 starts at the track he has finished 17th or better in 21 of them. Look for him to finish just inside the top 10.
11 to 20
No. 16 Greg Biffle: Biffle has 11 top 10 finishes in 20 career starts at Bristol. He is a very good fantasy option.
No. 56 Martin Truex Jr.: The success Truex Jr. had at Bristol while in the Nationwide Series has finally carried over with three consecutive top 11 finishes. He should flirt with the top 15 again this visit to the track.
No. 15 Clint Bowyer: Bowyer has cracked the top 10 in seven of his last 12 starts at Bristol. He should just miss the top 10 on Sunday.
No. 5 Kasey Kahne: Kahne has been hit-or-miss at Bristol lately. He should crack the top 15 this weekend.
No. 31 Jeff Burton: Burton won the 2008 spring race at Bristol and has been fast at the track lately. He will be fighting for another top 15 finish this weekend.
No. 39 Ryan Newman: Newman has nine finishes in the top 10, two in the teens, and five finishes in the 30s during his last 16 races at Bristol. His inconsistency bumps him out of our top 15.
No. 78 Kurt Busch: Busch has won five races at Bristol during his career and was awesome at the track in 2010. He is a decent option.
No. 9 Marcos Ambrose: Ambrose has averaged a 17th place finish at Bristol during his career. The Terrific Tasmanian is worth using in all leagues this visit to the Volunteer State.
No. 42 Juan Pablo Montoya: Montoya has cracked the top 20 in eight of his past 11 Bristol starts. We like his chances to do it again on Sunday.
No. 22 Joey Logano: Logano has struggled a little at Bristol so far in his career, but we have a feeling he will be a little better this trip to the Bullring.
21 to 30
No. 27 Paul Menard: Menard has cracked the top 25 in nine of the last 11 Bristol races. He should do it again this weekend.
No. 43 Aric Almirola: Almirola has been terrific so far this season. Bristol isn’t one of his better tracks, but we still like his chances.
No. 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr.: Normally we love Stenhouse Jr., but he is difficult to chose this weekend at Bristol.
No. 1 Jamie McMurray: McMurray has finished outside the top 20 in nine of the last 16 races at Bristol. We don't recommend using him as much more than a fourth or fifth fantasy driver this weekend.
No. 47 Bobby Labonte: Bobby is driving okay this year and has been fast at Bristol in the past. He isn’t a terrible option.
No. 10 Danica Patrick: We have very little faith in Danica at this difficult track.
No. 83 David Reutimann: Reutimann has averaged a 22nd place finish at Bristol. He is a decent sleeper pick.
No. 55 Brian Vickers: Vickers has been very average at Bristol. There are better options to sneak onto your roster.
No. 34 David Ragan: Ragan continues to struggle at Bristol. He isn’t a fantasy option this weekend.
No. 13 Casey Mears: Mears won’t do enough in the No. 13 car to warrant using in most fantasy leagues.
No. 7 Dave Blaney
No. 51 A.J. Allmendinger
No. 30 David Stremme
No. 87 Joe Nemechek
No. 19 Mike Bliss
No. 38 David Gilliland
No. 35 Josh Wise
No. 32 Terry Labonte
No. 93 Travis Kvapil
No. 36 J.J. Yeley
No. 95 Scott Speed
No. 33 Landon Cassill
No. 98 Michael McDowell
No. 44 Scott Riggs
My Yahoo! Fantasy NASCAR Team for this Week:
A. Brad Keselowski
B. Greg Biffle
B. Kurt Busch
C. David Reutimann