Joe Gibbs Racing-18

Joe Gibbs Racing-18

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Date:

In his final start at Las Vegas as a fulltime driver, Jeff Gordon set a new track record with a speed of 194.679 mph. This is Gordon’s first pole at the track and the third time he has started on the front row.

Gordon now has two poles in three races this year after also taking the top spot at Daytona; he was involved in a late-race accident there. When Gordon started on the outside pole at Vegas in 2003 he was also swept into an accident and finished 37th, but a second-place start in 2010 preceded a third-place finish.
Mar 6 - 8:43 PM

Reed Sorenson, Mike Bliss, Travis Kvapil, Mike Wallace, and Matt DiBenedetto failed to qualify for the Kobalt 400.

NASCAR expanded the time between the end of the first practice session and beginning of qualification, so everyone got a chance to attempt to qualify. These five drivers are disappointed, but head to Phoenix next week as the Western Swing continues.
Mar 6 - 8:14 PM

Sprint Cup regular (No. 3 Chevrolet SS) Austin Dillon tops the speed chart in the Final Practice session for the XFINITY Series Boyd Gaming 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. He also led the first practice earlier today.

The No. 33 Rheem Chevrolet Camaro driver ran a fast lap of 182.927 mph. No. 2 Brian Scott, No. 39 Ryan Sieg, No. 62 Brendan Gaughan and No. 7 Regan Smith round out the top five of the 41 cars out on the track. The No. 15 Chevrolet driven by Cody Ware was the slowest in the final practice session. Dillon also had a 10-lap average speed of 177.432 mph. This was the best of the eight cars running at least 10 consecutive laps in this session.
Mar 6 - 7:43 PM

Camping World Truck Series regular Erik Jones has the best 10-lap consecutive average speed in the first practice for the XFINITY Series Boyd Gaming 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

The average speed of 175.790 mph in the No. 20 Toyota Camry was best of the three cars that ran 10 consecutive laps on the track for this session. No. 9 Chase Elliott (175.017 mph) and No. 42 Brennan Poole (172.240 mph) are the others on this list.
Mar 6 - 7:35 PM

Sprint Cup Series regular Austin Dillon leads the first practice session for the XFINITY Series Boyd Gaming 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

The lap of 180.977 mph in the No. 33 Rheem Chevrolet Camaro was best of the 33 cars out on the track for this session. No. 3 Ty Dillon, No. 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr., No. 7 Regan Smith, No. 22 Ryan Blaney and No. 54 Denny Hamlin are the rest of the top five on the speed chart. Mario Gosselin in the No. 90 Chevrolet Camaro was the slowest.
Mar 6 - 7:31 PM

Brendan Gaughan has made two previous Cup starts at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. His best finish so far was a 22nd in 2004 racing for Roger Penske.

Gaughan also finished 34th in 2012 racing for Richard Childress, so he has been in decent equipment. He will be a sentimental favorite, but is unlikely to be one of the best fantasy values this week.
Mar 6 - 7:26 PM

Las Vegas Motor Speedway is one of the tracks the Wood Bros. regularly attend, which means that Trevor Bayne has four consecutive seasons of experience there. In those four starts, he has a best finish of ninth in 2012 and three results in the 20s.

Bayne should be able to crack the top 20 in his Roush-Fenway Racing Ford, but is unlikely to climb into the top 15. Fantasy owners should plan accordingly.
Mar 6 - 7:20 PM

Las Vegas Motor Speedway is one of the tracks the Wood Bros. regularly attend, which means that Trevor Bayne has four consecutive seasons of experience there. In those four starts, he has a best finish of ninth in 2012 and three results in the 20s.

Bayne should be able to crack the top 20 in his Roush-Fenway Racing Ford, but is unlikely to climb into the top 15. Fantasy owners should plan accordingly.
Mar 6 - 7:20 PM

Justin Allgaier will attempt to earn his fourth consecutive top-20 finish on a similarly-configured, 1.5-mile track this week. He finished 15th and 20th at Charlotte and Texas last fall, and then followed that up with a 20th at Atlanta last week.

At his salary cap level, Allgaier is one of the better values and could be one of this week’s top dark horse picks.
Mar 6 - 7:16 PM

Kyle Larson posted the fastest single lap in the first practice session for the Kobalt 400. His top speed was 191.646 mph.

That was posted in the final two minutes of the session. He leapfrogged over Jeff Gordon’s lap of 191.225 mph, which was also set late in the afternoon. As the track cools during the evening, look for these speeds to continue to increase and there is the potential for a new track record.
Mar 6 - 4:17 PM

David Ragan ran well early in last week’s Quik Trip 500, but slipped in the middle stages of the race and lost a couple of laps. He is still seeking his first top-15 of 2015 and is in strong equipment subbing for Kyle Busch.

Ragan needs to make some noise this week in order to solidify himself as a place-and-hold driver. In five starts with Roush-Fenway Racing at the beginning of his career, he recorded only one top-20, however, so that could be a tall order.
Mar 6 - 3:57 PM

Before joining Front Row Motorsports, David Gilliland earned three straight top-25s, but in his sixth starts with his current team he is still seeking success. In five previous attempts with that organization, his best finish was a 28th in 2013.

Gilliland was two laps off the pace in that race, but he was running at the end. He could be a decent value in games that offer place differential points because he has lost positions from his qualification effort in only one event in eight starts.
Mar 6 - 3:45 PM

Mike Bliss has two priorities at Las Vegas this week. First he wants to make the show and primarily he hopes to be around when the checkers wave.

Bliss has been entered in five races at this track. He failed to qualify in 2000 and 2007, did not get a chance to qualify in 2013 and retired with crash damage in 2010. In the single race in which he was running at the end, he finished 16th and on the lead lap in 2005 racing for Gene Haas.
Mar 6 - 3:39 PM

Michael Annett was a little too loose at the beginning of practice for the Kobalt 400. He spun off turn four, but did not make contact with the wall.

Annett’s crew tightened the car up and sent him back out. Halfway through the session, he was posted midway on the chart with a speed of 184.672 mph.
Mar 6 - 3:34 PM

Fantasy players should be pleased if Reed Sorenson manages to finish in the low 30s this week. In five efforts at Las Vegas, four of his results ended in results between 31st and 40th.

Sorenson also has an 18th on this track, but that came back in 2008 while driving for Chip Ganassi Racing. Last year he finished 34th in a Tommy Baldwin Racing car; he was five laps off the pace.
Mar 6 - 3:31 PM

The last time Mike Wallace raced in the Cup series at Las Vegas was a decade ago in 2005. He finished 24th in the Morgan-McClure entry.

Wallace was one of the 13 drivers who failed to record a qualification lap last week at Atlanta and was low enough in the points that he failed to make the show. He might still be a little rusty on this track type.
Mar 5 - 11:26 AM

Last week Jeb Burton ran 316 of the 325 laps that make up the Folds of Honor Quik Trip 500. He finished only 35th in his debut, but he gained valuable track time.

Burton has run strong enough in the XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series to make him of interest to fantasy players, but it is going to take some time before he is a starter in the Cup series.
Mar 5 - 11:20 AM

Cole Whitt has finished better than he started in his last 10 attempts on similarly-configured, 1.5-mile tracks. That includes last week’s 37th-place finish after he was awarded the 41st spot on the Atlanta grid.

Sometimes the advancement is not great, but it is consistent enough to make him an interesting choice in games that offer place differential points.
Mar 5 - 11:15 AM

When he crossed under the checkers 27th in the Folds of Honor Quik Trip 500 at Atlanta, Michael McDowell scored his second 20-something finish in his last three starts on a similarly-configured, 1.5-mile track.

Running a part time schedule has been good for the No. 95 team. Their results have consistently improved to make them solid low-cap picks and that trend should continue at Las Vegas.
Mar 5 - 10:35 AM

In his first start with Tommy Baldwin Racing, Alex Bowman scored his best finish on a similarly-configured, 1.5-mile track; he finished 23rd. Last year, with BK Racing, his best was a 30th at Charlotte in the fall.

Change is often good for everyone involved so Bowman needs to be watched closely. If he continues to score in the mid-20s, he will be an exceptional value at his salary cap level.
Mar 5 - 10:30 AM


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