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Joey Logano
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NASCAR Fantasy Cheat Sheet

Firekeepers Casino 400 Cheat Sheet

by Dan Beaver
Updated On: June 5, 2019, 5:26 pm ET

Michigan International Speedway and Auto Club Speedway are two of the closest comparatives one will find on the NASCAR schedule. One track was literally built from the blueprint of the other and while weather and age has altered them differently over the years, a quick look at the records for these courses shows just how much similarity there is between drivers who run well on both.

The 2-mile tracks are wide, multi-grooved affairs on which drivers can generally make passes once they catch a competitor. With the current aero-package, it remains to be seen how the difficulty level of passing will have changed until the Firekeepers Casino 400 is in the books, so for now handicaps have to be done with historic data.

1. Kyle Busch
Busch earned his fourth win of the season last week at Pocono and with another top-five in the Coke 600 he seems to have his mojo back.

2. Chase Elliott
Elliott finished second in his first three attempts at Michigan; he's been eighth or ninth in the last three but with momentum on his side, he should be among the top-five again this week.

3. Brad Keselowski
Keselowski swept the top 10 at Michigan last year and finished in the runner-up spot in the second race. He swept the top five on this track in 2016 and the top-10 in the two seasons preceding it.

4. Kevin Harvick
Harvick enters the weekend with the best record at Michigan last year. He dominated both races, finishing second and first. This spring, he was fourth at Auto Club.

5. Joey Logano
The 2-mile tracks have been uniformly good for Logano. He enters this weekend with 14 top-10 finishes on them in the last 15 attempts that includes a victory at Michigan in 2016.

6. Ryan Blaney
Team Penske is great on the 2-mile tracks. Last year all three of their drivers swept the top 10 at Michigan. Blaney also has top-10s in his last two starts at Auto Club.

7. Kurt Busch
With a third in this race last year and a sixth in the summer, Busch is one of seven drivers who swept the top 10 at Michigan in 2018.

8. Aric Almirola
Almirola came up one position shy of being the eighth driver to sweep the top 10 at Michigan last year with an 11th in this race. Still, he enters with a three-race, top-12 streak at the track.

9. Martin Truex Jr.
Truex won last year's Auto Club race, but he fell outside of the top 10 in both Michigan races. This spring, he was eighth on the California 2-miler.

10. Kyle Larson
In 2017 Larson swept Victory Lane on the 2-mile tracks after winning the summer 2016 race at Michigan. He finished second at Auto Club in 2018, but he's struggled since.

11. Clint Bowyer
With rain fast approaching, Bowyer held his teammate Harvick at bay in this race last year, but his other two results on 2-milers were an 11th and 12th.

12. Austin Dillon
Dillon should be able to rebound from back-to-back 30-something finishes this week because he carries a five-race, top-15 streak on 2-mile tracks into the Firekeepers Casino 400.

13. Erik Jones
In seven races on 2-mile tracks, Jones has a perfect record of top-20s and all but one of these was in the top 15. His career best at Michigan was a third in summer 2017.

14. Denny Hamlin
In the eight races on 2-mile tracks, Hamlin has scored only one top-five but he's been outside the top 15 on only one occasion as well.

15. Daniel Suarez
In the first two starts on 2-mile tracks last year, Suarez finished outside the top 20. His last two attempts have been in the top 15 with an 11th at Michigan last summer and a 13th at Auto Club this spring.

16. Alex Bowman
In his last four starts on 2-mile tracks, Bowman has gotten progressively worse beginning with a 13th at Auto Club last year and ending with a 21st there this spring.

17. Paul Menard
Back in 2013 through 2015 this was one of Menard's best track types with six straight top-10s. He's been solid in the past two years, but more likely to finish in the teens.

18. William Byron
If one tosses out last summer's bad finish at Michigan after Byron experienced trouble, he has a perfect record of top-15s on the 2-mile tracks.

19. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
Stenhouse can crack the top 10 on occasion on the 2-mile tracks and this was once the proving ground for Roush Fenway Racing. He's more like to get results in the high-teens these days, however.

20. Chris Buescher
Buescher had one of his best career performances at Michigan in summer 2017 with a sixth. He's scored a couple of top-10s on the 1.5-milers so far this year.

21. Jimmie Johnson
Since scoring his latest top-10 on this track type in 2018, Johnson has failed to crack the top-15 on a 2-mile track in three subsequent starts.

22. Ryan Newman
Newman has been consistent on the 2-mile tracks in the past two years with three results of 21st or 22nd and a best of 15th.

23. Daniel Hemric
Hemric's 13th-place finish last week at Pocono was encouraging, but one should not lose sight of the fact that was only his second top-15 of the season.

24. Bubba Wallace
Wallace got off to a good start on the 2-mile tracks last year with a 20th- and 19th-place finish. This spring, he finished only 30th in the Auto Club 400.

25. Ryan Preece
A 23rd in the Auto Club 400 is one of 10 top-25s scored by Preece in 14 starts this season. He is liable to score another result in that range in the Firekeepers Casino 400.

26. Matt DiBenedetto
With last year's team, DiBenedetto scored a best finish of 24th on 2-mile tracks in the summer Michigan race. This spring, he finished 18th at Auto Club in the No. 95.

27. Michael McDowell
McDowell has been very consistent on 2-mile tracks with results of 24th through 27th in his last five starts.

28. David Ragan
Depending on where he fits on your roster, Ragan could be a decent pick. He finished 25th and 27th in three of his last four starts on 2-mile tracks.

29. Ty Dillon
If one tosses out the high and low of 21st and 38th on 2-mile tracks, Dillon should be expected to finish about 27th this week in the Firekeepers Casino 400.

30. Matt Tifft
This spring at Auto Club was the sight of one of Tifft's better performances. He finished 26th after starting 32nd, which is his fifth-best finish this year.

31. Landon Cassill
In his last two attempts on 2-mile tracks, Cassill finished 29th last summer at Michigan and again this spring at Auto Club.

32. Bayley Currey
Based on last week's performance and 25th-place finish at Pocono, Currey deserves a little attention this week. He'll be risky, but sometimes success hinges on the bottom of the roster.

33. Quin Houff
Houff will get to make his fifth consecutive start this week. In his last two attempts, he cracked the top 30 with a best of 28th at Charlotte.

34. Corey LaJoie
LaJoie came close to breaking into the top 25 in this race last year, but when the series returned to Michigan in the summer he could muster only a 40th.

35. Garrett Smithley
Now that Ross Chastain has decided to make the fulltime commitment to the Truck series, this strong ride is open for other drivers and Smithley takes the wheel at Michigan.

36. Cody Ware
Ware's last two efforts ended in a 40th-place finish at Kansas and a 38th at Charlotte. With a light field, he will have a better number this week, but still be at the back of the pack.

 

Drivers Most Accurately
Predicted This Year

Driver

Avg.
Difference

Times
Within 3

 

Landon Cassill

3.6

10

David Ragan

3.6

7

Matt Tifft

4.1

9

Ryan Newman

4.6

8

Martin Truex Jr.

4.8

6

Ty Dillon

5.4

8

Kyle Busch

5.4

7

Daniel Suarez

6.0

4

Austin Dillon

6.1

3

William Byron

6.1

2

Denny Hamlin

6.1

9

Paul Menard

6.1

5

 

Dan Beaver

Dan Beaver has been covering fantasy NASCAR for more than 15 years with a little help from his >600,000 record database. He can be found on Twitter @FantasyRace.