Dale Earnhardt Jr. posted the quickest 10-lap average in the first practice session for the Oral-B USA 500 at Atlanta. He went 184.691 mph during his first 10 laps on the track.
Carl Edwards posted the fastest lap in the first practice session for the Oral-B USA 500 at Atlanta. His top speed of 192.855 mph was set during his first lap on the track.
In a press conference prior to the first practice session for the Oral-B USA 500, NASCAR president Mike Helton announced that Tony Stewart will receive a waiver and would be eligible for a Chase berth if he wins one of the final two regular season races.
Based on his consistency, Cole Whitt could be a conditionally good pick for fantasy players. His last four efforts on the similarly-configured, 1.5-mile tracks of Texas, Kansas, Charlotte, and Kentucky have ended in results ranging from 27th to 31st.
Kurt Busch will race chassis No. 760 at Atlanta. This car has been raced previously at Kansas in May and Indy in July.
Aric Almirola’s record on similarly-configured, 1.5-mile tracks this year resembles a bell curve. He has three top-12 finishes at Texas, Kansas, and Charlotte, which are bracketed by a 25th at Vegas and 39th at Kentucky.
Kyle Larson has been consistently strong everywhere NASCAR has raced this year, but some of his most modest results have come on similarly-configured, 1.5-mile tracks. With the exception of a fifth at Texas and 12th at Kansas, the remainder of his efforts ended outside the top 15.
Jimmie Johnson will race chassis No. 48-797 this week. This is the same car he drove at Michigan two weeks ago and finished ninth.
Ryan Newman has finished 16th or better in the five races contested on similarly-configured, 1.5-mile tracks so far this year. His worst result was a 16th at Texas, but his best effort came in the most recent race at Kentucky.
If the first five races this year on similarly-configured, 1.5-mile tracks are an indication, David Ragan should finish somewhere in the 30s at Atlanta. His best result on this track type in 2014 is a pair of 31sts at Charlotte and Kentucky.
Tony Stewart will race for the first time in three weeks following a fatal accident in a sprint car event in upstate New York. He will be distracted by media attention, but should be considered a strong contender.
Paul Menard is consistent and occasionally strong on similarly-configured, 1.5-mile tracks. In five races this year he has a best of third at Vegas and a worst of 17th at Kansas.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. will run chassis 88-901 this week in the Oral-B USA 500; it is a brand new chassis that has not yet been raced.
Clint Bowyer once earned four sixth-place finishes at Atlanta in five races from 2007 through 2009. In the six races since then, he has only one more top-20, which was a seventh in fall 2010.
Carl Edwards will race chassis No. RK-880 this week in the Oral-B USA 500; this chassis was last run at Kentucky, another similarly-configured, 1.5-mile track. Edwards did not fare particularly well there with a 17th-place finish.