AAA 400 Betting News and Notes

AAA 400 Betting News and Notes

Dover International Speedway Data

Season Race #: 28 of 36 (9-29-13)
Chase Race #: 3
Track Size: 1-mile
Banking/Turn 1 & 2: 24 degrees
Banking/Turn 3 & 4: 24 degrees
Banking/Frontstretch: 9 degree
Banking/Backstretch: 9 degree
Frontstretch Length: 1,076 feet
Backstretch Length: 1,076 feet
Race Length: 400 laps / 400 miles

Top 13 Driver Rating at Dover

Jimmie Johnson 119.6
Matt Kenseth 107.3
Kurt Busch 105.6
Carl Edwards 102.9
Greg Biffle 101.4
Mark Martin 97.3
Kurt Busch 93.6
Jeff Gordon 92.7
Clint Bowyer 91.1
Martin Truex Jr. 89.9
Ryan Newman 88.4
Jeff Burton 86.4
Brad Keselowski 85.3

Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2013 races (17 total) among active drivers at Dover Motor Speedway.

Qualifying/Race Data

2012 pole winner: Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 159.299 mph, 22.599 secs. 9-28-12

2012 race winner: Brad Keselowski, 125.076 mph, (03:11:53), 9-30-12

Track qualifying record: Jeremy Mayfield, Dodge, 161.522 mph, 22.288 secs. 6-4-04

Track race record: Mark Martin, Ford, 132.719 mph, (03:00:50), 9-21-97

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Re: AAA 400 Betting News and Notes

Driver Tale of the Tape at Dover


1 - Matt Kenseth (No. 20 Home Depot Husky Toyota)


· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 110.8

2013 Rundown
· Seven wins, eight top fives, 15 top 10s; two poles
· Average finish of 13.0
· Led 19 races for 1,344 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· Two wins, 13 top fives, 18 top 10s; one pole
· Average finish of 13.6 in 29 races
· Average Running Position of 9.4, second-best
· Driver Rating of 107.3, second-best
· 409 Fastest Laps Run, fourth-most
· 5,429 Laps in the Top 15 (79.8%), second-most
· 449 Quality Passes (passes of cars in the top 15 under green), fourth-most

2 - Kyle Busch (No. 18 Interstate Batteries Toyota)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 103.5

2013 Rundown
· Four wins, 13 top fives, 17 top 10s; three poles
· Average finish of 13.1
· Led 14 races for 1,169 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· Two wins, eight top fives, 11 top 10s
· Average finish of 13.3 in 17 races
· Average Running Position of 11.2, sixth-best
· Driver Rating of 105.6, third-best
· 363 Fastest Laps Run, fifth-most
· 5,174 Laps in the Top 15 (76.0%), fourth-most
· 432 Quality Passes, fifth-most

3 - Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Lowe's / KOBALT Tools Chevrolet)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 105.5

2013 Rundown
· Four wins, 11 top fives, 17 top 10s; two poles
· Average finish of 12.3
· Led 16 races for 1,180 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· Seven wins, 11 top fives, 16 top 10s; three poles
· Average finish of 9.0 in 23 races
· Series-best Average Running Position of 7.1
· Series-best Driver Rating of 119.6
· Series-high 923 Fastest Laps Run
· Series-best Average Green Flag Speed of 144.091 mph
· Series-high 5,862 Laps in the Top 15 (86.2%)

4 - Carl Edwards (No. 99 Fastenal Ford)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 93.9

2013 Rundown
· Two wins, eight top fives, 14 top 10s; one pole
· Average finish of 12.1
· Led 12 races for 448 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· One win, eight top fives, 12 top 10s
· Average finish of 8.6 in 18 races
· Average Running Position of 10.3, third-best
· Driver Rating of 102.9, fourth-best
· 487 Fastest Laps Run, second-most
· Average Green Flag Speed of 143.588 mph, fifth-fastest
· 4,912 Laps in the Top 15 (72.2%), seventh-most
· Series-high 469 Quality Passes

5 - Greg Biffle (No. 16 Filtrete Ford)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 83.3

2013 Rundown
· One win, four top fives, 11 top 10s
· Average finish of 14.7
· Led 4 races for 117 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· Two wins, six top fives, 10 top 10s; one pole
· Average finish of 12.5 in 22 races
· Average Running Position of 10.7, fifth-best
· Driver Rating of 101.4, fifth-best
· 432 Fastest Laps Run, third-most
· 723 Green Flag Passes, fourth-most
· Average Green Flag Speed of 143.654 mph, fourth-fastest
· 5,109 Laps in the Top 15 (75.1%), fifth-most
· 464 Quality Passes, second-most

6 - Kevin Harvick (No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 92.7

2013 Rundown
· Two wins, seven top fives, 14 top 10s
· Average finish of 12.6
· Led 9 races for 53 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· Three top fives, 11 top 10s
· Average finish of 15.6 in 25 races
· Average Running Position of 16.0, 14th-best
· Driver Rating of 83.1, 14th-best
· 749 Green Flag Passes, third-most
· 4,009 Laps in the Top 15 (58.9%), 11th-most
· 348 Quality Passes, 10th-most

7 - Kurt Busch (No. 78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Chevrolet)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 94.9

2013 Rundown
· Nine top fives, 14 top 10s; one pole
· Average finish of 14.8
· Led 13 races for 441 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· One win, six top fives, eight top 10s
· Average finish of 18.1 in 26 races
· Average Running Position of 12.7, eighth-best
· Driver Rating of 93.6, seventh-best
· 267 Fastest Laps Run, eighth-most
· 714 Green Flag Passes, fifth-most
· Average Green Flag Speed of 143.373 mph, ninth-fastest
· 4,265 Laps in the Top 15 (62.7%), 10th-most
· 393 Quality Passes, seventh-most

8 - Jeff Gordon (No. 24 Axalta Chevrolet)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 90.2

2013 Rundown
· Five top fives, 13 top 10s; one pole
· Average finish of 15.2
· Led 12 races for 275 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· Four wins, 16 top fives, 23 top 10s; four poles
· Average finish of 11.8 in 41 races
· Average Running Position of 12.8, ninth-best
· Driver Rating of 92.7, eighth-best
· 711 Green Flag Passes, sixth-most
· Average Green Flag Speed of 143.546 mph, seventh-fastest
· 5,016 Laps in the Top 15 (73.7%), sixth-most
· 458 Quality Passes, third-most

9 - Ryan Newman (No. 39 State Water Heaters Chevrolet)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 81.5

2013 Rundown
· One win, six top fives, 13 top 10s; two poles
· Average finish of 15.8
· Led 12 races for 87 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· Three wins, six top fives, 11 top 10s; four poles
· Average finish of 13.1 in 23 races
· Average Running Position of 12.7, seventh-best
· Driver Rating of 88.4, 11th-best
· Average Green Flag Speed of 143.134 mph, 11th-fastest
· 4,492 Laps in the Top 15 (66.0%), eighth-most
· 338 Quality Passes, 13th-most

10 - Clint Bowyer (No. 15 Raspberry 5-Hour ENERGY Benefiting Living Beyond Breast Cancer Toyota

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 93.5

2013 Rundown
· Eight top fives, 14 top 10s
· Average finish of 12.4
· Led 7 races for 290 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· One top five, eight top 10s
· Average finish of 12.7 in 15 races
· Average Running Position of 12.8, 10th-best
· Driver Rating of 91.1, ninth-best
· 169 Fastest Laps Run, 12th-most
· Average Green Flag Speed of 143.398 mph, eighth-fastest
· 4,293 Laps in the Top 15 (71.6%), ninth-most
· 353 Quality Passes, ninth-most

11 - Dale Earnhardt Jr. (No. 88 National Guard Chevrolet)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 93.8

2013 Rundown
· Five top fives, 15 top 10s; one pole
· Average finish of 14.7
· Led 9 races for 165 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· One win, five top fives, nine top 10s
· Average finish of 17.0 in 27 races
· Average Running Position of 18.8, 20th-best
· Driver Rating of 78.7, 17th-best
· 159 Fastest Laps Run, 13th-most
· 681 Green Flag Passes, 11th-most

12 - Joey Logano (No. 22 Shell Pennzoil Ford)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 89.6

2013 Rundown
· One win, eight top fives, 14 top 10s; two poles
· Average finish of 15.5
· Led 11 races for 249 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· One top five, five top 10s
· Average finish of 16.8 in nine races
· Average Running Position of 19.0, 21st-best
· Driver Rating of 76.2, 21st-best

13 - Kasey Kahne (No. 5 Farmers Insurance Chevrolet)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 98.2

2013 Rundown
· Two wins, eight top fives, 11 top 10s
· Average finish of 16.8
· Led 7 races for 497 laps

Dover International Speedway Outlook:
· One top five, five top 10s
· Average finish of 21.5 in 19 races
· Average Running Position of 16.9, 16th-best
· Driver Rating of 80.2, 16th-best
· 293 Fastest Laps Run, seventh-most
· 695 Green Flag Passes, ninth-most

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Re: AAA 400 Betting News and Notes

AAA 400 Preview
By Micah Roberts
VegasInsider.com

Even though the first two races of NASCAR’s Chase for the Sprint Cup were held on two totally different tracks -- one at Chicago’s fast 1.5-mile track and the other at New Hampshire’s flat 1-mile layout, the results were the same: The Joe Gibbs drivers of Matt Kenseth and Kyle Busch finished 1-2. Tony Stewart is the only driver to win the first two races of the Chase in 2011, and he came away with the Championship. Now with Kenseth having a 14-point lead with eight races remaining, he looks like the runaway favorite to win his second Cup title.

But there’s still eight races remaining and a lot can happen over that span, especially considering he hasn’t put too much distance between he and his closest competitors, Busch and five-time champion Jimmie Johnson. While Kenseth received the bonus points for winning the past two, Busch and Johnson have captured top-5 finishes. Busch is only 14-points behind and Johnson is only 18 back as the series rolls into Dover, Delaware for this week’s race.

Dover could be major equalizer for Kenseth’s closest competitors, especially if a race is run similar to what he ran there in June. Kenseth blew an engine and ended up finishing 40th while Kyle Busch led the most laps (150) and Johnson led the second-most (143).

No one has better at Dover than Johnson since he came onto the scene as a rookie in 2002, when he swept the season there. Now that’s a way to come into a series and mark your territory! Altogether, he has seven wins with the last coming in the spring of 2012. It appears that his string of back luck that he experienced heading into the Chase is over after two solid finishes.

Kyle Busch has taken a similar liking to Dover over his career that includes two wins, two runner-ups as a rookie in 2005 and four other top-5s in 17 starts. One of the reasons to favor Busch here is because of how well he consistently runs at Bristol. Dover has a 1-mile high banked layout -- completely different from the flat 1-mile layout of New Hampshire last week, and although Bristol is a half-mile track, the banking between the two require similar set-ups and drivers that do well at one seem to fare well at the other.

If we do put a lot of weight into what happened at the last Bristol race in late August, then that’s bad news for Busch and Johnson because it was one of the seven races won on the season by Kenseth.

Prior to his 40th-place finish at Dover earlier this season, and a 35th last fall, Kenseth had been a money ballplayer at Dover. He grabbed wins there in 2006 and 2011 and at one point, he went on a run from 2008-12 where he finished fifth or better in eight of nine starts. Needless to say, Kenseth will again be hard to topple, and his engine problems experienced at Dover earlier look to be a thing from the past that won’t reoccur after extensive testing by Toyota for this very moment to be perfect in the Chase. Two wins in two Chase races doesn’t get any more perfect.

But three straight wins? That’s where the dilemma comes in. Kenseth’s team looks far better than everyone else, but the law of averages have to come into play sometime, don’t they? There are 42 other drivers out there with traps everywhere from wrecks, debris on the track or bad tires that can slow a great car down.

If looking to side with the driver who won at Dover, you’re out of luck because Tony Stewart is on the disabled list and Mark Martin will drive the No. 14 car again. However a nice long shot to win might be Juan Pablo Montoya who finished second in that race. Jeff Gordon and Brad Keselowski also fared well with top-5 finishes.

Top-5 Finish Prediction

1) #48 Jimmie Johnson (6/1)
2) #18 Kyle Busch (7/1)
3) #20 Matt Kenseth (7/1)
4) #99 Carl Edwards (20/1)
5) #24 Jeff Gordon (10/1)

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Re: AAA 400 Betting News and Notes

Driver Handicaps: Dover
By: Jeff Wackerlin
Racingone.com

To assist in making your fantasy racing picks, MRN.com's Jeff Wackerlin breaks down all the stats and information to help steer you toward Sunday's AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway.

Who's HOT at Dover

• Jimmie Johnson leads all drivers in wins (7) and laps led (2,461).
• Matt Kenseth, who experienced engine issues in the spring in his first track start with
Joe Gibbs Racing, has finished in the top five in seven of the last 10 races.
• Carl Edwards leads all drivers with an 8.6 average finish.
• Kyle Busch has finished seventh or better in six of the last seven races, including a win
in the 2010 spring race.
• Clint Bowyer is the only driver that has finished in the top 10 in the last five races.
• Jeff Gordon and Brad Keselowski are tied for the best average finish (6.0) in the last
three races.

Who to Keep an Eye On at Dover


• Kevin Harvick (7.7), Joey Logano (8.3), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (8.3), Mark Martin (8.7) and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (12.5 - 2 races) each rank in the top 10 in average finish in the last three races at Dover with the current Goodyear tire combination.
• Kasey Kahne will be driving the same car he finished first and second with, respectively, in both races at Bristol Motor Speedway this season.
• Kurt Busch (2011 fall Dover winner) and Greg Biffle (two-time Dover winner) have posted respective average finishes of 8.5 and 9.5 in the first two races of the Chase.
• Martin Truex Jr. has finished in the top 10 in two of his last three starts at Dover.  He was running in the top three in the spring before mechanical issues ended his race early.
• Brian Vickers, who will be driving a new chassis, will be making his first Dover Cup start since 2011.
• Jeff Burton has posted a 12.7 average finish in the last 10 Dover races, including runner-up finishes in both races in 2010.
• Denny Hamlin has won the pole for the last two races at Dover.  Hamlin finished eighth in this event last year, but finished 34th this past June after a blown right-front tire with less than 25 laps remaining ended his day in 34th.

Note: Sprint Cup teams will run the same left- and right-side tire combinations that they have competed with in the last three races at Dover.

MRN.com Writer Picks

Jeff Wackerlin: Kyle Busch
Pete Pistone: Greg Biffle
Dustin Long: Jimmie Johnson
John Singler: Greg Biffle

Top 20 Driver Notes - Ordered by current standings

(All stats/notes are in regards to Dover unless noted)

Matt Kenseth: Led 29 laps and finished 40th in the spring due to engine failure in first track start with Joe Gibbs Racing; 18 top 10s, including two wins, in previous 28 starts; Second-best driver rating (107.3) in the last 17 races; Won the last race on a concrete surface at Bristol Motor Speedway after leading 149 laps; First among the Chase drivers in laps led (263) in the three races on concrete tracks (Bristol and Dover) in 2013.

Kyle Busch: Two-time winner of the spring race; Has finished seventh or better in six of the last seven races; Has combined to lead 452 laps in last two starts; Third-best driver rating (105.6) in the last 17 races; Led a race-high 150 laps and finished fourth in the spring; 13.3 average finish and 452 laps led in the three races with the current tire combination; Best average finish (5.7) among the Chase drivers in the three races on concrete tracks (Bristol and Dover) in 2013.

Jimmie Johnson: Leads all drivers in wins (7) and laps led (2,461); Led 143 laps and finished 17th in the spring to snap streak of five consecutive top 10s; Best driver rating (119.6) in the last 17 races; 7.3 average finish and 475 laps led in the three races with the current tire combination; 25.0 average finish and 143 laps led in the three races on concrete tracks (Dover and Bristol) in 2013; Will return in the same car (chassis No. 797) that he raced in the spring at Dover.

Carl Edwards: Leads all drivers in average finish (8.6); Winner of this event in 2007; Fourth-best driver rating (102.9) in the last 17 races; 23.7 average finish and 119 laps led in the three races on concrete tracks (Dover and Bristol) in 2013; Will return in the same car (chassis No. 808) that he finished eighth with at Pocono Raceway in August.

Greg Biffle: Last of two wins came in this event in 2008; Has yet to finish in the top 10 in last six starts; Fifth-best driver rating (101.4) in the last 17 races; 11.7 average finish and no laps led in the three races on concrete tracks (Dover and Bristol) in 2013; Will return in the same car (chassis No. 844) that he last finished 15th with at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Kevin Harvick: 9.6 average finish in last eight starts; Best finish in 25 starts is second in the 2012 spring race; 18.7 average finish and eight laps led in the three races on concrete tracks (Dover and Bristol) in 2013; 7.7 average finish in the three races with the current tire combination; Will return in the same car (chassis No. 425) that he last finished ninth with at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Kurt Busch: Finished 12th in the spring in first track start with Furniture Row Racing; Led 90 laps and won this event in 2011 with Penske Racing; 18.1 average finish in 26 starts; 15.7 average finish and 63 laps led in the three races on concrete tracks (Dover and Bristol) in 2013.

Jeff Gordon: 2.5 average finish in last two starts; Last of four wins came in the 2001 spring race; 11.8 average finish and 2,292 laps led in 41 starts; Tied for the best average finish (6.0) in the three races with the current tire combination; 14.7 average finish and 66 laps led in the three races on concrete tracks (Dover and Bristol) in 2013.

Ryan Newman:
17.2 average finish and 29 laps led in nine starts with Stewart-Haas Racing; Last of three wins in 23 starts came in this event in 2004 with Penske Racing; 21.3 average finish and no laps led in the three races on concrete tracks (Dover and Bristol) in 2013; Will return in the same car (chassis No. 682) that he used in a test at Texas Motor Speedway in April.

Clint Bowyer: Only driver to have finished in the top 10 in each of the last five races; 6.7 average finish in three starts with Michael Waltrip Racing; 8.3 average finish and 50 laps led in the three races on concrete tracks (Dover and Bristol) in 2013; 6.7 average finish in the three races with the current tire combination; Will return in the same car (chassis No. 777) that he last led 48 laps with at Atlanta Motor Speedway before engine issues knocked him out of the race.

Dale Earnhardt Jr: Coming off second top 10 in 11 starts with Hendrick Motorsports; 8.3 average finish in last three starts; 8.3 average finish in the three races with the current tire combination; 8.7 average finish and 32 laps led in the three races on concrete tracks (Dover and Bristol) in 2013; Will return in the same car (chassis No. 745) that he last finished 10th with at Bristol Motor Speedway; This car has yet to finish outside the top 10 in three starts.

Joey Logano: Finished seventh in the spring in first track start with Penske Racing; Has finished in the top 10 in his last three starts; 16.8 average finish in nine overall starts; 8.3 average finish in the three races with the current tire combination; 9.7 average finish and one lap led in the three races on concrete tracks (Dover and Bristol) in 2013; Will debut a new car (chassis No. 865) in the AAA 400.

Kasey Kahne: 15.7 average finish in three starts with Hendrick Motorsports; Last of five top 10s (ninth) in 19 overall starts came in the 2012 spring race; 8.7 average finish and 111 laps led in the three races on concrete tracks (Dover and Bristol) in 2013; Will return in the same car (chassis No. 769) that he last finished second with at Bristol Motor Speedway and won with there in the spring.

Brad Keselowski:
Defending race winner; Finished fifth in the spring; Tied for the best average finish (6.0) in the three races with the current tire combination; Will debut a new car (chassis No. 866) in the AAA 400.

Jamie McMurray: 18.7 average finish in 21 starts; Has yet to finish in the top 10 in last 10 starts.

Martin Truex Jr.: 19.3 average finish in seven starts with Michael Waltrip Racing; Won the 2007 spring race with Dale Earnhardt, Inc.; Last of six top 10s in 15 overall starts came in this event last year in sixth.

Paul Menard:
19.8 average finish in five starts with Richard Childress Racing; 20.2 average finish in 12 overall starts; Will return in the same car (chassis No. 414) that he last finished sixth with at Bristol.

Aric Almirola: 14.3 average finish in three starts; Only top 10 (sixth) came in the 2012 spring race; Will return in the same car (chassis No. 855) that he last finished 20th with at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr: 12.5 average finish in two starts; Will return in the same car (chassis No. 815) that he last finished 18th with at Darlington Raceway.

Jeff Burton: 15.6 average finish in 39 starts; Finished second in both races in 2010; Will debut a new car (chassis No. 429) in the AAA 400.

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Re: AAA 400 Betting News and Notes

NASCAR Betting: AAA 400 Preview
By Covers.com

The next stop on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series calendar is the AAA 400 from the Dover International Speedway.

Matt Kenseth won last weekend is currently top of the driver standings and is 14 points ahead of Kyle Busch.

Tony Stewart was the winner at the FedEx 400 at the one mile oval track in Dover back on June 2.

Here is our betting preview:

Favorite: Jimmie Johnson (3-1)

Johnson finished 17th here in June after starting 24th on the grid. He does have five wins, nine top-fives and 13 top-10 finishes in his last 19 races at Dover, and seven wins at Dover in his career. He finished fourth one week ago and is currently 18 points back of leader Matt Kenseth in the Cup standings.

Live dog: Kurt Busch (18-1)


Busch started fourth last week but finished 13th and will look for drastic improvements at Dover. Kurt won this race back in 2011, finished fourth in 2010 and fifth in 2009, so he's comfortable here. He's currently seventh in the standings and sits 40 points back.

Long shot: Ricky Stenhouse (100-1)

Stenhouse has only raced at Dover three times, but has a top-five finish and a top-10 finish and boasts an average finish of 8.3. Stenhouse finished 13th here in June after starting 23rd in the grid. He finished 24th at New Hampshire last week.

Key stat: Jimmie Johnson (2009 and 2010) is the only driver to win at Dover from the pole position since 2003.

Notable quotable: “I’m really looking forward to Dover. It is one of my favorite tracks. We were close there last time, lead a bunch of laps and were in position there toward the end for a win. Unfortunately, we got penalized on that final restart and weren’t able to pull it off. I think we’ve clarified things a little bit with the new restart rule and are headed in the right direction. This Lowe’s team has had a consistent start to the Chase (for the NASCAR Sprint Cup) and I expect more of the same this weekend in Dover.” - Jimmie Johnson

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Re: AAA 400 Betting News and Notes

AAA 400 Post-Practice Betting Notes
By: Micah Roberts 
Sportingnews.com

Jimmie Johnson wasn't fastest in either of the two final practice sessions Saturday at Dover International Speedway, but on the first 10 laps of the final session he showed why he was posted as the 7-to-2 favorite to win Sunday's AAA 400.

Johnson came out blazing with the second fastest lap (156.182 mph) of the 50-minute session on his third lap, and he continued to be fast for seven more laps, which was good enough to give him the best 10-consecutive lap average among the 23 drivers that ran as many continuously.

Just because a driver leads this category doesn't necessarily mean they are going to win the race, but when it's a champion like Johnson, who has seven wins on the high-banked concrete surface of Dover, it goes a long way to at least saying he's the favorite and is going to be tough to beat.

Because Johnson hasn't fared his best on 1.5-mile tracks this season, and four more of those tracks remain on the Chase schedule, Dover becomes one of those tracks that he has to do well at in an attempt to win his sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup title. He's won at Dover three times during Chase races, including his last two Championship seasons.

With the way Matt Kenseth and Kyle Busch have started out the Chase -- finishing 1-2 in the first two races -- and combining to win six of the seven races on 1.5-mile tracks this season, Johnson needs to be better than them this week.

However, Kenseth isn't exactly a slouch at Dover himself, and he was just a notch below Johnson with the second best 10-consecutive lap average. Kenseth will be attempting to win his third straight race of the Chase and eighth overall on the season. He's a two-time winner at Dover and has a 13.6 average finish in 29 career starts, the first start of which was his first in the Cup series in 1998.

While Johnson, Kenseth and Busch jockey for point position, Brad Keselowski is racing just to get his first win of the season. The reigning champ doesn't get to defend his title, but he looks to be in good shape to defend his Dover fall race crown. He won this race last season and also finished fifth in the spring. During happy hour, he laid down the fastest lap (156.338 mph) and had the fourth best 10-consecutive average. He may present the best value on the odds board this week.

In the morning practice session, Kasey Kahne had the fastest single lap (157.288 mph) and also the fastest 10-consecutive lap average. Just like Johnson, Kenseth and Keselowski, expect Kahne to be very good on long runs and be a contender to notch his first career win around the 1-mile oval.

Another reason to like Kahne this week, beyond his practice times, is that he's using his winning chassis from the March Bristol race. Since Bristol's concrete layout was altered in the fall of 2007 to feature multiple grooves, the track has run very similar to Dover.

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