Tag Archives: Talladega

Early Rankings: Talladega II, 2015

Dale Earnhardt Jr. photo

Dale Jr. tops my early Talladega II rankings. (photo courtesy nascar)

Update: I’ve now completed my final Talladega II rankings (click here to see them).

Here are my early driver rankings for this week’s race at Talladega. I compiled them by crunching the loop data for the past four plate races, the qualifying data from last year’s Daytona 500 and the spring Talladega race (because those are the last two races in which qualifying occurred and didn’t involve drafting) , and the loop data for this year’s Daytona Duels. Those metrics reflect speed, the ability to pass and the ability (and inclination) to run a lot of laps up front.

The results:

  1. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
  2. Jimmie Johnson
  3. Jeff Gordon
  4. Kasey Kahne
  5. Kevin Harvick
  6. Denny Hamlin
  7. Martin Truex Jr.
  8. Paul Menard
  9. Brad Keselowski
  10. Kurt Busch Continue reading

Final Rankings: Talladega I, 2015

Kasey Kahne tops my final Talladega rankings. (photo courtesy nascar)

Kasey Kahne tops my final Talladega rankings. (photo courtesy nascar)

Here are my final driver rankings for today’s race at Talladega. I compiled them by crunching the qualifying data from Talladega on Saturday, and then melding it with the historical data:

  1. Kasey Kahne
  2. Jimmie Johnson
  3. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
  4. Kurt Busch
  5. Joey Logano
  6. Denny Hamlin
  7. Greg Biffle
  8. Jeff Gordon
  9. Paul Menard
  10. Clint Bowyer Continue reading

Early Rankings: Talladega I, 2015

Joey Logano tops my early Talladega rankings. (photo courtesy nascar)

Joey Logano tops my early Talladega rankings. (photo courtesy nascar)

Here are my early driver rankings for this week’s race at Talladega. I compiled them by crunching the loop data for the past four plate races, the qualifying data from last year’s Daytona 500 (because that’s the last sorta-recent plate race in which qualifying didn’t involve drafting), and the loop data for this year’s Daytona Duels. Those metrics reflect speed, the ability to pass and the ability (and inclination) to run a lot of laps up front:

  1. Joey Logano
  2. Kurt Busch
  3. Kasey Kahne
  4. Jimmie Johnson
  5. Greg Biffle
  6. Denny Hamlin
  7. Dale Earnhardt Jr
  8. Martin Truex Jr
  9. Kevin Harvick
  10. Jeff Gordon Continue reading

Final Rankings: Talladega II, 2014

Denny Hamlin remains my pick to win Talladega II today. (photo courtesy nascar)

Denny Hamlin remains my pick to win Talladega II today. (photo courtesy nascar)

The practice speed chart numbers have long held very little predictive value at the restrictor plate races because the cars draft during plate practices. And now, unfortunately, they draft during qualifying, too, so the qualifying speed chart numbers are out the window as well.

The point? I have little new information to use to update my early Talladega rankings. I did cruise around online this morning to get a feel for other handicappers’ updated/final rankings, and I then made some tweaks to mine. The results:

  1. Denny Hamlin
  2. Greg Biffle
  3. Joey Logano
  4. Kurt Busch
  5. Kyle Busch
  6. Dale Earnhardt. Jr.
  7. Jimmie Johnson
  8. Jeff Gordon
  9. Brad Keselowski
  10. Kevin Harvick Continue reading

Mid-Week Rankings: Talladega II, 2014

Denny Hamlin tops my mid-week Talladega II rankings. (photo courtesy nascar)

Denny Hamlin tops my mid-week Talladega II rankings. (photo courtesy nascar)

Here are my mid-week driver rankings for this week’s race at Talladega. I compiled them by crunching the qualifying data from this year’s Daytona 500 (because that’s the only plate race this year in which qualifying didn’t involve drafting), and the loop data for the past three plate races. Those metrics reflect speed, the ability to pass and the ability (and inclination) to run a lot of laps up front:

  1. Denny Hamlin
  2. Greg Biffle
  3. Joey Logano
  4. Kurt Busch
  5. Kyle Busch
  6. Dale Earnhardt. Jr.
  7. Jimmie Johnson
  8. Jeff Gordon
  9. Austin Dillon
  10. Kasey Kahne Continue reading

Final Rankings: Talladega I, 2014

The practice speed chart numbers have long held very little predictive value at the restrictor plate races because the cars draft during plate practices. And now, unfortunately, they draft during qualifying, too, so the qualifying speed chart numbers are out the window as well.

The point? I have little new information to use to update my early Talladega rankings. I did cruise around online this morning to get a feel for other handicappers’ rankings, and I then made some tweaks to mine. The results:

  1. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
  2. Matt Kenseth
  3. Jimmie Johnson
  4. Kyle Busch
  5. Martin Truex Jr.
  6. Joey Logano
  7. Ryan Newman
  8. Carl Edwards
  9. Brad Keselowski
  10. Jeff Gordon Continue reading

Mid-Week Rankings: Talladega I, 2014

Here are my early driver rankings for this week’s race at Talladega. I compiled them by crunching the qualifying data for the past three races at Daytona and the spring 2013 race at Talladega (rain washed out qualifying at the fall 2013 Talladega race), and the loop data for the past two races at Daytona and the past two races at Talladega. Those metrics reflect speed, the ability to pass and the ability (and inclination) to run a lot of laps up front:

  1. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
  2. Matt Kenseth
  3. Jimmie Johnson
  4. Kyle Busch
  5. Martin Truex Jr.
  6. Joey Logano
  7. Ryan Newman
  8. Carl Edwards
  9. Paul Menard
  10. Kasey Kahne Continue reading

Final Rankings: Talladega II, 2013

Coming at you live from Talladega! I’m in the infield down between turns 1 and 2 right near the wall, if any of you are around. White cowboy hat, orange Dukes of Hazzard 01 shirt. Camp spot 670 in the blue campground.

OK, onto the final rankings. Qualifying was rained out, and the practice speeds Friday hold close to zero correlation to race performance, so I’m just gonna roll with my original, mid-week rankings for today’s tace. Which you can find here: Mid-Week Rankings: Talladega II, 2013.

OK, I hear a PBR calling me. Oh, help me root on Dale Jr. today. He was my sister Mandy’s favorite, and Talladega was her favorite race. She died this spring, and it sure would be cool if he won today!

Mid-Week Rankings: Talladega II, 2013

Here are my early driver rankings for this week’s race at Talladega. I compiled them by crunching the loop and qualifying data for the past two races at Daytona and the spring race at Talladega, which reflects speed, the ability to pass and the ability (and inclination) to run a lot of laps up front:

  1. Jimmie Johnson
  2. Matt Kenseth
  3. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
  4. Kyle Busch
  5. Martin Truex Jr.
  6. Danica Patrick
  7. Joey Logano
  8. Kasey Kahne
  9. Clint Bowyer
  10. Ryan Newman Continue reading

Final Rankings: Talladega I, 2013

Here are my final driver rankings for today’s race at Talladega. I had to abandon my usual process because qualifying was rained out and the practice data isn’t comprehensive or consistent. So, I took my early rankings and tweaked them according to some impressions I gleaned from practice and the opinions of several other NASCAR handicappers. The results:

  1. Matt Kenseth
  2. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
  3. Clint Bowyer
  4. Brad Keselowski
  5. Ryan Newman
  6. Kyle Busch
  7. Kasey Kahne
  8. Jeff Gordon
  9. Greg Biffle
  10. Tony Stewart Continue reading