Fantasy NASCAR rankings: Heluva Good! Sour Cream Dips at the Glen

by Brian Polking on August 13, 2011 @ 14:45:05 PDT

 


Marcos Ambrose

Last weekend at Pocono, fantasy owners got a lesson on the importance of track position. In clean air, drivers like Denny Hamlin seemed next to unstoppable, but once in traffic, they couldn't make any progress toward the front. Passing will be just as difficult this weekend at Watkins Glen, making the qualifying results and pit strategy even more important.

Looking at the starting grid, fantasy owners have to be salivating at the names starting in the top 10. Pole-sitter Kyle Busch is a former winner at The Glen, and he has finished in the top 10 in his last five starts at the track. A.J. Allmendinger will start on the outside of the front row, coming off a fourth-place finish at the track last season. Road course ace Marcos Ambrose starts third, and he enters the race with a series-best 2.7 average finish at The Glen.

The solid options continue outside of the top three qualifiers. Defending race winner Juan Pablo Montoya qualified fifth, and five-time track winner Tony Stewart rolls off seventh in search of his seventh top-two finish in his last eight starts at The Glen. Carl Edwards starts eighth, and he has finished in the top 10 in five straight starts, including back-to-back top-five finishes. Even ninth-place qualifier Martin Truex Jr. has some sleeper value, having posted three top-15 finishes in his last four starts at Watkins Glen.

Granted, big names like Kurt Busch and Jeff Gordon are looking further back as well and can't be written off. However, fantasy owners can build a very strong roster without looking very far down the starting grid. Given the importance of track position, they might want to consider the strategy.

Rk
Driver
Car No.
Make Sponsor Team
Starting Pos
1
Marcos Ambrose
9
Ford Stanley Black & Decker Richard Petty Motorsports
3
2
Kyle Busch
18
Toyota M&M's Joe Gibbs Racing
1
3
Tony Stewart
14
Chevrolet Office Depot Stewart-Haas Racing
7
4
Juan Pablo Montoya
42
Chevrolet Target Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing
5
5
A.J. Allmendinger
43
Ford Best Buy Richard Petty Motorsports
2
6
Kurt Busch
22
Dodge Shell/Pennzoil Penske Championship Racing
27
7
Carl Edwards
99
Ford Aflac Roush Fenway Racing
8
8
Jeff Gordon
24
Chevrolet Drive to End Hunger Hendrick Motorsports
17
9
Jimmie Johnson
48
Chevrolet Lowe's Home Improvement Hendrick Motorsports
4
10
Ryan Newman
39
Chevrolet U.S. Army Stewart-Haas Racing
6
11
Kevin Harvick
29
Chevrolet Budweiser Richard Childress Racing
23
12
Kasey Kahne
4
Toyota Red Bull Red Bull Racing
18
13
Martin Truex Jr.
56
Toyota NAPA Michael Waltrip Racing
9
14
Clint Bowyer
33
Chevrolet Cheerios Richard Childress Racing
19
15
Brad Keselowski
2
Dodge Miller Lite Penske Championship Racing
12
16
Denny Hamlin
11
Toyota FedEx Joe Gibbs Racing
42
17
Matt Kenseth
17
Ford Crown Royal Roush Fenway Racing
24
18
Jamie McMurray
1
Chevrolet Bass Pro Shops Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing
14
19
Robby Gordon
7
Dodge SPEED Energy Robby Gordon Motorsports
31
20
Dale Earnhardt Jr.
88
Chevrolet Mountain Dew AMP Energy Hendrick Motorsports
25
21
Greg Biffle
16
Ford 3M Roush Fenway Racing
28
22
Jeff Burton
31
Chevrolet Caterpillar Richard Childress Racing
40
23
Mark Martin
5
Chevrolet GoDaddy.com Hendrick Motorsports
22
24
Joey Logano
20
Toyota Home Depot Joe Gibbs Racing
13
25
Boris Said
51
Chevrolet Thank a Teacher Today Phoenix Racing
15
26
Brian Vickers
83
Toyota Red Bull Red Bull Racing
20
27
Paul Menard
27
Chevrolet Menard's Richard Childress Racing
32
28
David Ragan
6
Ford UPS Roush Fenway Racing
16
29
David Reutimann
00
Toyota Aaron's Michael Waltrip Racing
39
30
Andy Lally
71
Ford TRG Motorsports TRG Motorsports
36
31
Ron Fellows
36
Chevrolet Golden Corral Tommy Baldwin Racing
38
32
Regan Smith
78
Chevrolet Furniture Row Furniture Row Racing
10
33
Bobby Labonte
47
Toyota Bush's Baked Beans JTG Daugherty Racing
11
34
Casey Mears
13
Toyota GEICO Germain Racing
26
35
Terry Labonte
38
Ford Long John Silver's Front Row Motorsports
43
36
T.J. Bell
50
Chevrolet Green Smoke MAKE Motorsports
34
37
J.J. Yeley
55
Ford TBA Front Row Motorsports
30
38
David Gilliland
34
Ford Taco Bell Front Row Motorsports
41
39
Scott Speed
37
Ford TBA Front Row Motorsports
29
40
Andrew Ranger
32
Ford U.S. Chrome FAS Lane Racing
35
41
Mike Skinner
60
Toyota Big Red Germain Racing
37
42
Michael McDowell
66
Toyota RaceHP.com HP Racing
33
43
Joe Nemechek
87
Toyota NEMCO Motorsports NEMCO Motorsports
21
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About Brian Polking

Racing has been part of Brian's life ever since he can remember, and he spent his childhood at dirt tracks throughout Ohio and Kentucky watching his father race. NASCAR naturally became his favorite sport, and he has been following the Cup, Nationwide and Truck Series for most of his life. Brian majored in journalism and economics at Ohio State University and becoming a sports writer has always been his dream. Although he has covered everything from minor league baseball to the NCAA tournament, his passion has always been NASCAR. Brian has served as a NASCAR writer for a variety of sites, eventually becoming head editor of the NASCAR section for Fanball.com. His knowledge of NASCAR comes from his life-long love of racing, and he tries to add a personal touch to every article he writes. Brian is always up for talking NASCAR with anyone that wants to. Brian joined KFFL's team in 2011.

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