Daytona 500 Picks

It’s almost race season! Time for our weekly picks again. I will be picking drivers for Yahoo Fantasy NASCAR each week as well as an overall race winner.

Pick-A-Winner

This week I’m going with Tony Stewart to win the 500. He’s long over due and even though he hasn’t showed much in qualifying or practice, he seems confident with his race car. He’s fresh, recharged, and ready to go, I think this is Tony’s year.

Yahoo Fantasy Picks

My A team starter will be Kevin Harvick. He’s proven he can get around Daytona and will be looking to get off to a strong start of SHR. On my B team I’m going with Ryan Newman and as mentioned above, Tony Stewart. Newman is going to have a very fast car at RCR and I think he has the best chance on that team to put it in victory lane. On my C team, I’m going with Austin Dillon. There is a lot of pressure on Austin, but I think he is up to the challenge, in fact, I ALMOST picked him to win the race.

I’m not going to bother sharing my bench this week since no qualifying points are given for the 500, its not really important.

NASCAR Picks: Dover

Pick-A-Winner

Well my sure fire pick last week of Jimmy Johnson back fired and knocked me down out of my almost Top 10 average down to 11.92. To see all my picks and averages for the season, CLICK HERE

This week I’m going with a bit of a dark horse, the man who swept both Nationwide races last year at Dover, I’m going with Joey Logano.

Yahoo Fantasy Sports Picks

It’s down to the wire for the spring segment! While I didn’t do as well as I had hoped last week at Charlotte, with Jimmy Johnson finishing 22nd, Jamie McMurray finishing 19th, and Casey Mears finishing 23rd. Kurt Busch’ 3rd place run was my only saving grace. I did end up moving up to 2nd place in my small league, just 131 points out of 1st. While I’d love to pull of the spring segment win, I’ll be happy with second because I’m more worried about the overall win.

This week for my A driver I’m once again going with Jimmie Johnson, on my B team is my race winning pick of Joey Logano and Kyle Busch. On my C team I’m giving the start to Rickey Stenhouse Jr.  On the bench I’ve got Matt Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Ryan Newman, and Danica Patrick.

NASCAR Picks: Martinsville

With the busy season coming on at my real job I’ve came to the realization that I don’t have the time each week to devote to writing a proper column. With that being said I’m going to discontinue the weekly writing of Restictor Plates Are Off, I will however continue to share my Yahoo Fantasy Pick ‘Em Picks and my pick for the race each week. I will from time to time be writing a NASCAR column just not on a weekly basis.

So on to the picks!

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(Photo Credit: Speedway Media)

Pick Of The Week

Last week I picked Dale Earnhardt Jr. to win at California, thanks in part to the last lap mayhem I almost came out with a winner, but I’ll settle for second place any day! That moves my average finish to 15.8 for the year. To track all my picks for 2013 CLICK HERE. This week in Martinsville I’m going with you guessed it, Mark Martin. Mark is going to be in a strong car driving the #11 Fedex Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing in place of injured Denny Hamlin. In fact this could be Mark’s last chance at a top tier cup seat, not downing MWR’s equipment, but I think most would agree a Gibbs ride is still a level above MWR. Not to mention Mark has two wins at Martinsville, both coming in the spring race.

Yahoo Pick ‘Em

Last week was a win for me in one league and a top five in the other. Three of my four picks finished top ten, the other top fifteen, not too bad!

Matt Kenseth-7th, Dale Jr.-2nd, Joey Logano-3rd, Casey Mears-15th.

But this is another week and at a track where anything can and probably will happen! Wish me luck!

A. Jeff Gordon- How can you not start him here?

B. Mark Martin & Dale Earnhardt Jr.- Mark is my pick to win the race, as I said above, and Dale Jr. has been solid thus far, Martinsville should be no different.

C. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.- I know alot of people have probably been burning their Ricky Stenhouse picks up early this year, I mean lets face it there isn’t much other option in the C level. I’m a little leery any time you start a rookie at a short track, but I think Ricky can stay calm enough to pull out a solid finish if he can avoid any major wrecks.

On the Bench:(I normally don’t share these, but they do effect qualifying and there is a minor chance I could panic if someone has a horrible qualifying and practice and swap them in, so I figure I’ll start sharing them)

A-Jimmie Johnson- Again, always solid at Martinsville, I would have probably started him over Gordon, but I figured I could use his starts later in the season.

B- Kurt Busch & Ryan Newman- Both are winners here, Kurt has been strong the last two weeks, I would have felt confident starting him. I don’t think Newman is a threat to win, but he is always a solid pole contender.

C- David Reutimann- Might get a good qualifying run in, if they are running the whole race he could have a decent finish.

Restrictor Plates Are Off: Phoenix Review

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Restrictor Plates Are Off: Phoenix Review

By: Jeff Southard

Edwards Back To His Winning Ways

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(Photo Credit: Jeff Wackerlin)

Well it didn’t take Jimmy Fenning long to bring Carl Edwards back to victory lane. After a rough Daytona Fenning, Edwards, and crew had the #99 Ford Fusion set on kill on Sunday. A big turn around from last week when I gave him the “Flat Tire Award” and I have to admit, I was ready to write the #99 team off for the season. But as of now it looks like there is plenty of fight left in Edwards! But the question is can he keep up the momentum throughout 2013? My guess is yes, Fenning is a good crew chief, if they continue to mesh together look out for them to be a dangerous duo.

Bone Head Move Of The Week

I think the hands down winner this week has to be Jeremy Clements for his used of the “n-word” at Daytona. I mean, come one, really? I don’t care what kind of context he used it in, its still uncalled for. He is representing NASCAR at one of its top three levels, this wasn’t a Saturday night short track interview, he should know better.

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(Photo Credit: NASCAR.com)

The Flat Tire Award

I’m going to give this weeks shout out to Stewart Haas Racing. Last week both Danica and Ryan Newman were in the top ten, this week they both had DNF’s. Newman wrecked twice on Sunday before finally giving it up. Danica made it most of the race but was holding down a 30th place position for most of those laps. A big step backwards from the solid run she had going last fall at Phoenix.

The Hard Charger Award

This week’s hard charger shout out has to go to A.J. Allmendinger. He returned to the #51 Guy Roofing Chevrolet for James Finch’s Phoenix Racing and quietly brought the car home in a solid 11th place finish. Very strong run for the equipment especially considering A.J. hasn’t been in a cup car in four months or so and hasn’t been in one full time for almost nine months.

Pick-A-Winner

Well I’m 0-2 so far this year in picking a winner. In fact my driver’s have an average finish of 30th, not good. But I plan on turning that around this week! In an effort to seek a bit of redemption and eat a little crow for casting Carl Edwards‘ entire season under the bus after week one I’m picking him to go back to back and win at Las Vegas.

For my results by week, CLICK HERE

Yahoo Fantasy Sports Picks

As with my pick-a-winner, my fantasy sports picks suffered last week as well. Kurt and Kyle were both in the 20’s, Danica was 39th, and Harvick failed to get a top ten. I scored 175 points which was just bad enough to put me in 8th place in one league and 17th in the other. But its early, no need to panic, I have a strategy in place! I think…….

Here are my winning picks for Vegas!

A. Jimmy Johnson- Normally I save five-time for the chase but I need a little early season momentum so I’m going to use up a start here.

B. Carl Edwards and Mark Martin- Mark is mister consistency at Las Vegas and Edwards is my pick to win the race. I feel like both will earn me a top ten.

C. Austin Dillon- I really wanted to go with Stenhouse here, Vegas is a strong track for him. But there are so few C level drivers that actually have a chance at a good finish I felt like I needed to save Stenhouse and take advantage of Dillon when I could.