The Cup Series has been coming to Pocono Raceway since 1975, and the track has hosted two events each year since the 1982 season. In those 66 races, only four times has the eventual winner started outside the top 20. Carl Edwards is the only active driver to have accomplished the feat, winning from the 29th starting spot in 2005. In the 12 races since Edwards' victories, nine winners have started sixth or better, including six from the front row.
Needless to say, qualifying has a lot to do with how a driver performs at Pocono. It is flat out tough to pass at the track, mainly because it is so hard to get a car to handle comfortably in general, let alone during side-by-side racing. As a result, fantasy owners need to pay close attention to the starting lineup before setting their own lineups this weekend.
Granted, starting at the back of the field doesn't guarantee that a driver will struggle, but it does severely hinder their chances of winning. For owner playing in leagues that limit the number of starts per driver, guys like Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart and Matt Kenseth need to avoided since they are all starting 20th or worse. Meanwhile, guys like Joey Logano, Martin Truex Jr. and Paul Menard have to be considered excellent sleeper picks this weekend since they all roll off inside the top 10.
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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