Fantasy NASCAR Rankings: Hollywood Casino 400

by Brian Polking on October 4, 2013 @ 13:35:28 PDT

 


After winning at Kansas Speedway last fall and earlier this year, Matt Kenseth was an easy choice for the top spot in the driver rankings heading into the weekend. After qualifying seventh and practicing in the top five all weekend, he was also an easy choice to remain in the top spot. In addition to the back-to-back wins at the track, Kenseth has reeled off six straight finishes of seventh or better and has posted a 3.8 average finish during the stretch. Fantasy owners need to get him in their starting lineups this weekend.

NASCAR driver Paul Menard
Menard looks like Kansas sleeper

The lone mover in the top five of the rankings heading into Sunday's race is Kevin Harvick. He snapped a 254-race drought by winning the pole at Kansas Friday, and when he qualifies anywhere near the front, it is often bad news for the competition. With six straight finishes of 12th or better at Kansas, he already figured to be one of the safer options available to fantasy owners. Throw in the pole-winning run Friday and solid practice times Saturday and Harvick could be much more than just a safe pick this weekend.

Another driver moving up in the final rankings is Dale Earnhardt Jr. Fresh off a second-place run at Dover last weekend, he slides up into the top 10 in the final rankings at Kansas on the strength of a sixth-place effort in qualifying and a solid showing in Saturday's practices. Granted, Junior has never been dominant at Kansas, but he has compiled a 9.8 average finish in his last four starts at the track and has a pair of top-seven runs during the stretch. Fantasy owners should consider him a solid addition to their rosters in all formats this weekend.

Outside of the top 10, Joey Logano is suddenly looking like a viable fantasy option. Despite a dismal 26.1 average finish in eight starts, he vaults into the top 15 of the final rankings thanks to a fifth-place run in qualifying and respectable practice times. Granted, it takes some guts on the part of fantasy owners to trust a driver that has never had a top-10 at Kansas, but those willing to take the risk could see a big reward. At the very least, Logano is a perfect option for those owners that need to try to gain ground in their leagues.

In terms of sleeper options, Paul Menard and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. appear to be the best of the bunch. Both drivers head into Sunday's ranked in the top 15 of the driver rankings, and both will start inside the top 10 after strong qualifying efforts. Menard has also finished in the top 12 in four of his last six starts at Kansas, including finishes of third and 10th in his last two starts. Meanwhile, Stenhouse finished a solid 11th in his Kansas debut earlier this year.

Rk
Driver
Car No.
Make
Sponsor Team
1
Matt Kenseth
20
Toyota
Dollar General Joe Gibbs Racing
2
Jimmie Johnson
48
Chevrolet
Lowe's Home Improvement Hendrick Motorsports
3
Brad Keselowski
2
Ford
Miller Lite Penske Championship Racing
4
Kasey Kahne
5
Chevrolet
Farmers Insurance Hendrick Motorsports
5
Kevin Harvick
29
Chevrolet
Budweiser Richard Childress Racing
6
Martin Truex Jr.
56
Toyota
NAPA Auto Parts Michael Waltrip Racing
7
Clint Bowyer
15
Toyota
5 Hour Energy Michael Waltrip Racing
8
Carl Edwards
99
Ford
Fastenal Roush Fenway Racing
9
Jeff Gordon
24
Chevrolet
Drive to End Hunger Hendrick Motorsports
10
Greg Biffle
16
Ford
3M Roush Fenway Racing
11
Kyle Busch
18
Toyota
M&M's Joe Gibbs Racing
12
Dale Earnhardt Jr.
88
Chevrolet
Diet Mountain Dew Hendrick Motorsports
13
Paul Menard
27
Chevrolet
Menard's Richard Childress Racing
14
Kurt Busch
78
Chevrolet
Furniture Row Furniture Row Racing
15
Brian Vickers
55
Toyota
Aaron's Dream Machine Michael Waltrip Racing
16
Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
17
Ford
Best Buy Roush Fenway Racing
17
Denny Hamlin
11
Toyota
FedEx Joe Gibbs Racing
18
Mark Martin
14
Chevrolet
Bass Pro Shops Stewart-Haas Racing
19
Jamie McMurray
1
Chevrolet
McDonald's Earnhardt Ganassi Racing
20
Ryan Newman
39
Chevrolet
Quicken Loans Stewart-Haas Racing
21
Joey Logano
22
Ford
Shell/Pennzoil Penske Championship Racing
22
Aric Almirola
43
Ford
Smithfield Richard Petty Motorsports
23
Marcos Ambrose
9
Ford
Stanley Black & Decker Richard Petty Motorsports
24
Juan Pablo Montoya
42
Chevrolet
Target Earnhardt Ganassi Racing
25
Jeff Burton
31
Chevrolet
Caterpillar Richard Childress Racing
26
A.J. Allmendinger
47
Toyota
Kroger JTG Daugherty Racing
27
Landon Cassill
33
Chevrolet
Honey Nut Cheerios Richard Childress Racing
28
David Gilliland
38
Ford
Love's Travel Stops Front Row Motorsports
29
David Ragan
34
Ford
Taco Bell Front Row Motorsports
30
Danica Patrick
10
Chevrolet
GoDaddy.com Stewart-Haas Racing
31
Casey Mears
13
Ford
GEICO Germain Racing
32
Justin Allgaier
51
Chevrolet
Brandt Phoenix Racing
33
Travis Kvapil
93
Toyota
Burger King BK Racing
34
David Reutimann
83
Toyota
Burger King BK Racing
35
Dave Blaney
7
Chevrolet
GoPro Tommy Baldwin Racing
36
Cole Whitt
30
Toyota
Swan Racing Swan Racing
37
Timmy Hill
32
Ford
Federated Auto Parts FAS Lane Racing
38
Tony Raines
40
Chevrolet
Moon Shine Attitude Attire Hillman Racing
39
J.J. Yeley
36
Chevrolet
United Mining Equipment Tommy Baldwin Racing
40
Reed Sorenson
95
Ford
Leavine Family Racing Leavine Family Racing
41
Josh Wise
35
Ford
Blockbuster.com Front Row Motorsports
42
Michael McDowell
98
Ford
Phil Parsons Racing Phil Parsons Racing
43
Joe Nemechek
87
Toyota
AM FM Energy NEMCO-JRR Motorsports

 

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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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