Fantasy NASCAR rankings: Showtime Southern 500

by Brian Polking on May 7, 2011 @ 08:40:12 PDT

 


Jimmie Johnson

Last weekend at Richmond, fantasy owners were reminded why the elite drivers in the sport are so valuable to a fantasy team. Jimmie Johnson and Tony Stewart started their night with absolutely terrible cars. If the race would have been a 200-mile event, both drivers would have finished off the lead lap and outside the top 25. However, both drivers were able to rebound during the course of the night and salvage top-10 finishes for both themselves and their fantasy owners.

With the series heading to Darlington this weekend and with rain wiping out almost every practice session, many drivers are likely going to find themselves starting Saturday night's race with less-than-perfect cars. The teams that are able to dial their cars in during the course of the night are going to come out on top, and for fantasy owners, uncertainty means the top options are even more valuable than they already are.

The bottom line is that when you are unsure about which drivers are going to run well, the safe plays are always the Johnsons and Stewarts of the world. These drivers run in the top-five and challenge for wins when they have a good car, and they still manage decent finishes when they have a bad car. In limited start formats, missing out on a top-five with one of these elite options isn't ideal, but a top-10 is much better than a finish outside the top 20 with a more unproven option.

Rk
Driver
Car No.
Make Sponsor Team
Starting Pos
1
Jeff Gordon
24
Chevrolet Drive to End Hunger Hendrick Motorsports
5
2
Denny Hamlin
11
Toyota FedEx Joe Gibbs Racing
3
3
Jimmie Johnson
48
Chevrolet Lowe's Home Improvement Hendrick Motorsports
19
4
Kyle Busch
18
Toyota M&M's Joe Gibbs Racing
14
5
Ryan Newman
39
Chevrolet U.S. Army Stewart-Haas Racing
2
6
Carl Edwards
99
Ford Aflac Roush Fenway Racing
4
7
Tony Stewart
14
Chevrolet Office Depot Stewart-Haas Racing
9
8
Matt Kenseth
17
Ford Crown Royal Roush Fenway Racing
20
9
Greg Biffle
16
Ford 3M Roush Fenway Racing
22
10
Juan Pablo Montoya
42
Chevrolet Target Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing
16
11
Kevin Harvick
29
Chevrolet Budweiser Richard Childress Racing
13
12
Jamie McMurray
1
Chevrolet Bass Pro Shops Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing
12
13
Mark Martin
5
Chevrolet GoDaddy.com Hendrick Motorsports
28
14
Brad Keselowski
2
Dodge Miller Lite Penske Championship Racing
10
15
Clint Bowyer
33
Chevrolet Cheerios Richard Childress Racing
26
16
Jeff Burton
31
Chevrolet Caterpillar Richard Childress Racing
24
17
Kasey Kahne
4
Toyota Red Bull Red Bull Racing
1
18
Dale Earnhardt Jr.
88
Chevrolet Mountain Dew AMP Energy Hendrick Motorsports
30
19
Martin Truex Jr.
56
Toyota NAPA Michael Waltrip Racing
29
20
David Ragan
6
Ford UPS Roush Fenway Racing
11
21
Kurt Busch
22
Dodge Shell/Pennzoil Penske Championship Racing
25
22
David Reutimann
00
Toyota Aaron's Michael Waltrip Racing
36
23
Joey Logano
20
Toyota Home Depot Joe Gibbs Racing
17
24
Brian Vickers
83
Toyota Red Bull Red Bull Racing
8
25
Paul Menard
27
Chevrolet Menard's Richard Childress Racing
18
26
Marcos Ambrose
9
Ford Stanley Black & Decker Richard Petty Motorsports
6
27
A.J. Allmendinger
43
Ford Best Buy Richard Petty Motorsports
7
28
Regan Smith
78
Chevrolet Furniture Row Furniture Row Racing
23
29
Bobby Labonte
47
Toyota Bush's Baked Beans JTG Daugherty Racing
15
30
Travis Kvapil
38
Chevrolet Long John Silver's Front Row Motorsports
21
31
Robby Gordon
7
Dodge SPEED Energy Robby Gordon Motorsports
43
32
Casey Mears
13
Toyota GEICO Germain Racing
32
33
David Gilliland
34
Ford Taco Bell Front Row Motorsports
37
34
Ken Schrader
32
Ford C&J Energy FAS Lane Racing
40
35
Landon Cassill
09
Chevrolet Security Benefit Phoenix Racing
27
36
Mike Skinner
60
Toyota Big Red Germain Racing
34
37
T.J. Bell
50
Toyota Little Joe's Autos MAKE Motorsports
33
38
David Stremme
30
Dodge TBA Inception Motorsports
38
39
Tony Raines
37
Ford TBA Front Row Motorsports
35
40
J.J. Yeley
46
Chevrolet Red Line Oil Whitney Motorsports
31
41
Michael McDowell
66
Toyota RaceHP.com HP Racing
39
42
Dave Blaney
36
Chevrolet Golden Corral Tommy Baldwin Racing
42
43
Joe Nemechek
87
Toyota AM FM Energy NEMCO Motorsports
41
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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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