Fantasy Picks: Who to pick and Who not to pick at the Martinsville Speedway

From the big and wide 2.0-mile Auto Club speedway to the small tight corners of the 0.526-mile Martinsville Speedway as race number six of the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will take place in Martinsville, Virginia this Sunday.

The Martinsville Speedway is a 0.526-mile length short-track that has a backstretch and frontstretch that are 800-feet long to go along with twelve degrees banking in each of its turns.

Who To Pick 

Jimmie Johnson – Johnson is the man to beat at the Martinsville Speedway as in twenty-four career Martinsville races, he has eight wins, seventeen top-fives, twenty-one top-tens and the six-time champion has only finished outside the top-twenty in one career Martinsville race.

Johnson has won two of the last four Martinsville races and has finished no worse than twelve in the last four races at the paperclip.

Clint Bowyer – Five races in and Bowyer is still searching for that first top-ten of the 2014 season and judging by past Martinsville results Bowyer has an excellent shot of chalking up his first good finish of the season this weekend because in sixteen Martinsville races, the Michael Waltrip Racing driver has four top-fives, ten top-tens and thirteen top-twenties in sixteen races at the Virginia short track.

Bowyer finished second in this race a year ago, and he has finished no worse than tenth in the last four Martinsville races.

Jeff Gordon – Gordon has had great success at the Martinsville, Virginia race track throughout his glorious career, and it has continued as of late as Gordon has one victory, two top-fives, three top-tens and four top-twenties in the last four Martinsville Speedway races.

Overall, Gordon has eight wins, twenty seven top-fives, thirty-four top-tens and enters his forty-third race at the Martinsville Speedway with a finishing average of sixth.

Brad Keselowski – Brad may not be the first name who comes to mind when you mention favorites at the Martinsville Speedway but in eight Martinsville races, he has five top-ten finishes and has never finished outside the top-twenty in his Martinsville Sprint Cup Series career.

Brad brought home finishes of fourth and sixth in last year’s races at the Martinsville Speedway.

Who Not To Pick 

Kurt Busch – Busch brought home his first solid finish of the season a week ago in California with a third-place finish but don’t expect that result to transfer over to this weekend in Virginia as the Stewart-Haas Racing driver has finished outside the top-ten in each of the last sixteen Martinsville Sprint Cup Series races. His last top-ten finish at the Martinsville Speedway came in the fall of 2005 while he was driving the Irwin Industrial Tools Ford for Jack Roush.

Kurt has only four top-ten finishes in twenty-seven career Martinsville races.

Kasey Kahne – Kahne has two top-fives in the last four Martinsville races, but he is a bit of a risky pick in this weekend’s STP 500 because the Hendrick Motorsports driver has just three top-fives and only four top-tens in twenty Martinsville races.

Kahne enters the weekend with an average finishing average of twentieth at the 0.526-mile race tack.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. – Stenhouse is a bit of an unknown still at most of the races tracks the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series visits, and I would pass on picking him this weekend because in two prior Sprint Cup Series races, he has finishes of 31st and 25th at the Martinsville Speedway.

Carl Edwards – Edwards enters the weekend with four top-ten finishes this season, but I wouldn’t expect Edwards to bring home his fifth top-ten of the season this weekend in Martinsville because he has finished outside the top-ten in the last four Martinsville races.

Edwards is consistently good at the Martinsville Speedway as he has fifteen top-twenty finishes in nineteen career Martinsville races, but he only finished in the top-ten in five of those races. Edwards is good at Martinsville, but he’s not spectacular at the Virginia short track.


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