The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series blows into Kansas Speedway for the 30th race of the 2013 season, the Hollywood Casino 400. Brian Brown took a look at past performances, season trends, and spoke with NASCAR contacts to predict how the field should finish on Sunday.
When: Sunday, October 6, 2013; 2:16 p.m./et.
Weather: Sunny with a high of 60; wind out of the WNW at 10 mph. There is a zero percent chance of precipitation on race day.
The Track: KansasSpeedway
Kansasis a 1.5 mile quad-oval. It has 15 degree banking in the corners and 10 degree banking in the tri-oval and five degree banking on the straight-aways.
Key to Race: KANSAS NOT JUST ANOTHER PRETTY 1.5 MILER
Kansas is another 1.5 mile oval which favors teams like Gibbs, Roush-Fenway and Hendrick Motorsports. Matt Kenseth, Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Gordon and Greg Biffle are the only two-time winners. Jimmie Johnson has taken three of the poles in the 14 Cup races the track has hosted.
43 cars will attempt to qualify for 43 spots.
Fantasy Cheat Sheet:
No. 20 Matt Kenseth: Kenseth dominated this spring’s race at Kansas and he has had one of the top cars at Kansas in seven of the last eight races at the track. He will be someone to use in all leagues again this weekend.
No. 48 Jimmie Johnson: Johnson dominated the fall 2011 race as well as the 2008 race. He has 12 top 10 finishes in 14 career starts at the track. He will be tough to beat.
No. 5 Kasey Kahne: Kahne has four straight top eight finishes at Kansas. He is an interesting pick this weekend.
No. 2 Brad Keselowski: Keselowski won at Kansas in the spring of 2011 and finished inside the top eight the last two trips. He is a terrific option on Sunday.
No. 56 Martin Truex Jr.: Truex Jr. has been awesome at Kansas the past three visits. He is a great second or third driver in all leagues.
6 to 10
No. 24 Jeff Gordon: Gordon has two career wins at Kansas and has finished 13th or better in 13 of his 16 starts at the track.
No. 15 Clint Bowyer: Bowyer has usually brought fast cars to his home-track. He is a top pick this weekend.
No. 16 Greg Biffle: Biffle won the 2007 race and also the 2010 trip to Kansas. He has finished 12th or better in 10 of the last 12 races at the track. We like his chances.
No. 29 Kevin Harvick: Harvick has finished inside the top six in five of the last nine starts at Kansas. He should back inside the top 10 this weekend.
No. 99 Carl Edwards: Edwards has top 10 finishes in seven of the last 11 races at Kansas. He does very well at 1.5 mile ovals and is a great pick.
11 to 20
No. 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.: Junior doesn’t count Kansas as one of his best tracks, but with how well he has been driving this year he is worth taking a chance on.
No. 18 Kyle Busch: Kansas has never been one of Rowdy's better tracks. Look for him to take some unnecessary chances that will either help or hurt your fantasy team.
No. 27 Paul Menard: Menard has six consecutive top 20 finishes at Kansas. He is worth using in most leagues.
No. 43 Aric Almirola: Almirola has driven very well at Kansas during his career. Use the No. 43 this weekend.
No. 39 Ryan Newman: Newman’s past trips to Kansasdefine hit-or-miss. He has four top 10 finishes in 15 career starts and 10 finishes 15th or worse results at the track. We think he will be back outside the top 15.
No. 78 Kurt Busch: Busch drove a decent race at Kansas earlier this season. He is worth using in most leagues.
No. 11 Denny Hamlin: Hamlin usually brings a decent car to Kansas, but with his struggles this season we can’t count on him.
No. 14 Mark Martin: Martin won the 2005 race at Kansas. He will drive his usual smart race and should finish inside the top 20.
No. 22 Joey Logano: Logano has improved nearly every trip he makes to Kansas, except this spring when he was taken out in a crash. Look for him to flirt with the top 15 this weekend.
No. 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr.: Ricky finished 11th at Kansas earlier this season. He should bring a similar setup this trip and a strong finish is expected.
21 to 30
No. 55 Brian Vickers: Vickers struggled while filling in behind the wheel of the No. 11 car for Denny Hamlin this spring. He should just barely miss the top 20.
No. 1 Jamie McMurray: McMurray had one of his best races of the 2013 campaign at Kansas this spring. We predict he will be a lot slower this visit.
No. 31 Jeff Burton: Burton has cracked the top 10 just twice at Kansas in his career. There are far better options this weekend.
No. 42 Juan Pablo Montoya: Montoya was great at Kansas in 2009, but has been mostly average since. We aren’t going to pick him to crack the top 20 this weekend.
No. 9 Marcos Ambrose: Ambrose has averaged a 21st place finish at Kansas during his career. He will finish right around his average.
No. 10 Danica Patrick: Patrick has never cracked the top 25 at Kansas. She may just do it this trip.
No. 34 David Ragan: Ragan has cracked the top 20 in six of his nine career starts at Kansas. He is worth using this weekend as a fourth driver in deep leagues.
No. 13 Casey Mears: Mears has cracked the top 16 in five of the last 11 races at Kansas. He is a decent sleeper option this weekend.
No. 47 A.J. Allmendinger: Dinger's has averaged a 22nd place finish at Kansas during his career. He won't come near that average this weekend.
No. 51 Justin Allgaier: Allgaier has the talent, but we will see if the No. 51 has the horses.
No. 83 David Reutimann
No. 7 Dave Blaney
No. 30 Cole Whitt
No. 40 Tony Raines
No. 33 Landon Cassill
No. 38 David Gilliland
No. 93 Travis Kvapil
No. 87 Joe Nemechek
No. 36 J.J. Yeley
No. 98 Michael McDowell
No. 95 Reed Sorenson
No. 32 Timmy Hill
No. 35 Josh Wise
My Yahoo! Fantasy NASCAR Team for this Week:
A. Matt Kenseth
B. Greg Biffle
B. Martin Truex Jr.
C. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.