Fantasy NASCAR rankings: Pocono 400

by Brian Polking on June 9, 2012 @ 17:10:20 PDT

 


The Cup Series has been coming to Pocono Raceway since 1975. The track has hosted two races each year since 1982. During that 36-year history, only four drivers have qualified outside the top 20 and gone on to win. The passing conditions at Pocono are among the toughest in the series, and it has even been described as a 175-mph parade because of the single-file racing that develops. Needless to say, track position is crucial, and starting up front is the first step in winning the battle.

The trend is great news for Joe Gibbs Racing. All three JGR drivers, including pole-sitter Joey Logano, qualified in the top five for Sunday's race. Logano is still looking for his first top 10 at Pocono, but he has finished in the top 15 in his last two June races at the track. Meanwhile, his teammates have been two of the top fantasy options at Pocono in recent years. Denny Hamlin is a four-time winner at the track, and he led the most laps in both races a year ago. Kyle Busch is still looking for his first win at Pocono, but with three finishes of third or better in his last four starts, he could be in Victory Lane as early as this weekend.

Sunday's race could also be a breakout opportunity for Carl Edwards. Last year's championship runner-up has been relatively quiet in 2012 and has definitely underperformed in the eyes of fantasy owners. That being said, he qualified on the outside of the front row, and he is a two-time winner at Pocono. This could be the week he finally gets going and starts putting up the type of numbers fantasy owners have come to expect from him.

Owners looking for a dark horse option should consider Paul Menard. He followed a solid set of practices Friday with a third-place effort in qualifying Saturday. He has also been steadily improving at Pocono. Menard enters this weekend's race with three straight top-15 finishes at the track, including a career-best 10th-place run last August. Don't be surprised if he is battling for another top-10 Sunday.

Rk
Driver
Car No.
Make Sponsor Team
Starting Pos
1
Denny Hamlin
11
Toyota FedEx Joe Gibbs Racing
5
2
Kyle Busch
18
Toyota M&M's Joe Gibbs Racing
4
3
Jimmie Johnson
48
Chevrolet Lowe's Home Improvement Hendrick Motorsports
24
4
Kasey Kahne
5
Chevrolet Farmers Insurance Hendrick Motorsports
10
5
Jeff Gordon
24
Chevrolet Drive to End Hunger Hendrick Motorsports
12
6
Carl Edwards
99
Ford Subway Roush Fenway Racing
2
7
Greg Biffle
16
Ford 3M Roush Fenway Racing
13
8
Dale Earnhardt Jr.
88
Chevrolet Mountain Dew AMP Energy Hendrick Motorsports
8
9
Tony Stewart
14
Chevrolet Office Depot Stewart-Haas Racing
22
10
Mark Martin
55
Toyota Aaron's Dream Machine Michael Waltrip Racing
6
11
Ryan Newman
39
Chevrolet U.S. Army Stewart-Haas Racing
18
12
Kevin Harvick
29
Chevrolet Budweiser Richard Childress Racing
21
13
Paul Menard
27
Chevrolet Menard's Richard Childress Racing
3
14
Matt Kenseth
17
Ford Best Buy Roush Fenway Racing
14
15
Brad Keselowski
2
Dodge Miller Lite Penske Championship Racing
31
16
Martin Truex Jr.
56
Toyota NAPA Auto Parts Michael Waltrip Racing
23
17
Joey Logano
20
Toyota Home Depot Joe Gibbs Racing
1
18
Clint Bowyer
15
Toyota 5 Hour Energy Michael Waltrip Racing
16
19
Regan Smith
78
Chevrolet Furniture Row Furniture Row Racing
7
20
A.J. Allmendinger
22
Dodge Shell/Pennzoil Penske Championship Racing
19
21
Juan Pablo Montoya
42
Chevrolet Clorox Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing
17
22
Marcos Ambrose
9
Ford Stanley Black & Decker Richard Petty Motorsports
9
23
Jamie McMurray
1
Chevrolet Bass Pro Shops Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing
11
24
Jeff Burton
31
Chevrolet Caterpillar Richard Childress Racing
20
25
Aric Almirola
43
Ford Medallion Financial Richard Petty Motorsports
29
26
Landon Cassill
83
Toyota Burger King BK Racing
15
27
David Reutimann
51
Chevrolet Tag Heuer Phoenix Racing
25
28
Bobby Labonte
47
Toyota Kingsford JTG Daugherty Racing
27
29
David Ragan
34
Ford 8-Hour Alert Front Row Motorsports
34
30
Dave Blaney
10
Chevrolet Tommy Baldwin Racing Tommy Baldwin Racing
42
31
Casey Mears
13
Ford GEICO Germain Racing
26
32
David Gilliland
38
Ford MHP Front Row Motorsports
36
33
Mike Bliss
19
Toyota Humphrey Smith Racing Humphrey Smith Racing
28
34
Reed Sorenson
32
Ford Unsponsored FAS Lane Racing
41
35
Josh Wise
26
Ford MDS Transport Front Row Motorsports
35
36
Stephen Leicht
33
Chevrolet LittleJoesAutos.com Richard Childress Racing
43
37
David Stremme
30
Toyota Inception Motorsports Inception Motorsports
40
38
Travis Kvapil
93
Toyota Burger King BK Racing
37
39
Stacey Compton
74
Chevrolet Turn One Racing Turn One Racing
39
40
J.J. Yeley
49
Toyota America Israel Racing America Israel Racing
32
41
Scott Riggs
23
Chevrolet North Texas Pipe R3 Motorsports
38
42
Joe Nemechek
87
Toyota AM FM Energy Wood Stoves NEMCO Motorsports
33
43
Michael McDowell
98
Ford Curb Records Phil Parsons Racing
30
Facebook Twitter Google +

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.

Don't miss these great reports....


What do you think? Sound off!



Recent KFFL releases