On to Texas … and I foresee this being a choppy track for many drivers. One driver I am looking at to turn their luck around here on this track is Brad Keselowski. Tire wear is a big issue at Texas speedway so a solid pit strategy and great handling will win the day. A few tracks come to mind when I think of handling being the key component to win: Charlotte, Atlanta, and Vegas. Keselowski picked up a win at Charlotte this year with impressive handling. Keselowski has a starting pole position of 6th place, and has been gaining momentum; looking strong in his last few performances. I feel this is too great an opportunity for Keselowski to pass up with a car and setup in it for the long haul. With playoffs inching closer Keselowski will remain vigilant and laser focused to notch a massive win for Team Penske Racing. My wager: Keselowski (+1100) to win.
One driver who has performed well at Texas Speedway is Matt Kenseth. He has a long day ahead of him drawing the 22nd starting position. However; he has a car that can move through the pack. Kenseth will be looking to avenge an unfortunate performance at Bristol Motor Speedway last Sunday. My wager: Matt Kenseth (+350) to win his group. He will have to beat out Chris Bell, Tyler Reddick, Austin Dillon, and Cole Custer. All likely here since Kenseth has led more laps than most veterans here and won Texas twice in his career!
Someone who is flying under the radar in the main stream headlines is … Ryan Blaney. Blaney has shown he has one of the premier cars to compete with. Blaney drew 2nd starting place. Blaney will look to jump out front early and use that clean air to lead as many laps as possible before pitting. Blaney’s car has a great handling, and throttling advantage for turning here at Texas. Blaney’s pit position will be a lever to help him stay up front all day. My wager: Ryan Blaney (+425) to win his group. Blaney will have to place higher than: Denny, Hamlin, Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr., and Chase Elliott. I see this ultimately being close but Blaney pulling it off.
*Odds courtesy of Bovada.lv and are subject to change at any time.*