Fantasy NASCAR Sleepers and Busts: FedEx400 benefiting Autism Speaks

by Eric McClung on May 28, 2014 @ 07:43:55 PDT

 


Clint Bowyer, NASCAR
In the thick of it at Dover

Featuring a high-banked concrete racing surface with wide corners and narrow straightaways, Dover International Speedway has earned its nickname: The Monster Mile. It is considered by drivers to be among the most difficult tracks to race on.

It's a challenge to find a setup that will allow the car to handle well in multiple grooves, not just at the bottom. The wide turns allow drivers to stay in the throttle the entire time, so the speeds are quite fast for a race track that is only one mile long, making the physical demands of turning the car that more difficult.

Practice sessions: Friday, May 30 at 11:00 a.m. EDT. Saturday, May 30 at 9:30 a.m. EDT, 12:30 p.m. EDT
Qualifying: Friday, May 30 at 3:40 p.m. EDT
Race: Sunday, June 1 at 1:00 p.m. EDT
Location: Dover, Del.
Shape: Oval
Length: 1.0 mile
Laps: 400
Turns: 24 degrees
Straightaways: 9 degrees

Sleepers

Kasey Kahne | No. 5 Farmers Insurance Chevrolet | Hendrick Motorsports

In 20 career starts on The Monster Mile, Kahne has only managed a single top-five and five top-10 finishes. However, he's registered a top-15 in four of the last five with an average running position of 15th or better in six straight. In this race a year ago, Kahne matched a career-best average running position of eighth but finished 23rd after sliding against the wall.

Clint Bowyer | No. 15 Cherry 5-Hour ENERGY for Special Ops Warrior Foundation Toyota | Michael Waltrip Racing

Bowyer returns to Dover with six consecutive top-10s at the site, the longest active streak in the series. He qualified on the first two rows for each of the 2012 races but hasn't always needed to start near the front to be successful coming from outside of the top 20 a total of three times. Over the last two years, he's spent more than 90 percent of the race running in the top 15 on three occasions.

Tony Stewart | No. 14 Code 3-Mobil 1 Chevrolet | Stewart-Haas Racing

Before his 2013 season was cut short due to a broken leg, Stewart had been outside of the top 20 in points prior to winning at Dover. He's healthy but in a similar funk right now, having recently lost out on a top-10 at Kansas Speedway following an ill-fated four-tire pit call and coming up short on fuel. Prior to winning last year, Smoke had placed 20th or worse at Dover in five straight, so he's likely to come at a value.

Martin Truex Jr. | No. 78 Furniture Row Chevrolet | Furniture Row Racing

Truex recorded a top-10 in each Dover race held in 2012 but blew an engine in this event last year after capturing the outside pole. He returned in the fall to score a respectable 15th-place finish. Last week at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Truex was putting together his second top-10 of the season before his ride suffered a mechanical issue with fewer than 10 laps to go.

Busts

Ryan Newman | No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet | Richard Childress Racing

Despite being a three-time winner at Dover; most recently in 2004, Newman has struggled in recent years, even after strong qualifying efforts. Prior to finishing eighth last fall he had only managed one top-20 in five starts. While Newman has yet to place worse than 22nd this season, Dover is a venue that has given him a number of recent disappointments.

Greg Biffle | No. 16 3M Ford | Roush Fenway Racing

Biffle has won a pair of Dover races in 23 career starts. In fact, from his 2005 spring win to the fall of 2008 victory he only finished worse than eighth once and scored three more top-fives. However, in The Biff's last seven Dover trips he's finished outside of the top 15 four times with just one top-10.

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About Eric McClung

Eric McClung has been profiled by the FSWA for covering the fantasy sports spectrum and is a three-time award finalist. Over the years, he's made several appearances in print and on radio. McClung began contributing to KFFL in 2008 and currently serves as one of KFFL's featured fantasy NASCAR experts. He's also captured the fantasy football championship in the KFFL staff league twice.

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