Good afternoon everyone...going on a little early because I've got to be off by 3:45 eastern today...so let's get this partaaayyy started!
Looking at a preliminary lineup of the 9, 14, 15, 48 and 78. I can swap the 14 for the 24 but Tony has momentum on his side.
Zach I agree I wouldn't trade 14 for the 24..My prelim team..kept Johnson, Kurt, and Tony...swapped Kahne and Logano for Gordon and Ambrose...considering now swapping Busch or Gordon for Bowyer...but that could change once we get to the track.
I just noticed Kevin Harvick has just TWO finishes outside the Top 15 and both of those were the result of wrecks at restrictor plate tracks. So much for "lame duck". Nice to see all parties around the 29 team keeping it together (and then some) despite his plans for 2014.
Sitting fourth in the points now Harvick almost a shoe in to make the Chase..with 59 points back to tenth place Tony Stewart.
Who do you think is going to win the Johnsonville Sausage 200 at Road America & the Toyota Save Mart 350 at Sonoma?
I'm thinking a little upset at Road America with a nod to Brian Vickers...very underrated road racer who finished fourth in the Sonoma Cup race a year ago...and I think Marcos Ambrose finally gets the one Sonoma owes him from 2010.
Prior to Danica Patrick who was the Last Woman to Race in a Sprint Cup Series Race on a Road Course?
Got me there Chris no idea is there was one.
Hell-o Mark, The 5 has just messed up my whole team the last few weeks. The garage says he's the car to beat and then he wrecks. Are they showing excess tire wear? Even if the 5 on the pole this week, I won't be on board. Thanks, Bill
I'm with you Bill..I left the 5 alone for a few weeks and got lured back in by the garage insiders last seek...he's going to have to get on a two or three race roll for me to get back on the band wagon..Four of my drivers last week led at least 14 laps and I still wound up with only 109...unbelievable.
GuruAny paybacks coming this weekend?Thinking the 11 maybe looking for payback.Anyone else holding a payback ready to be cashed in this weekend?
It's possible Sonoma could be used for that purpose..but I don't think Hamlin can afford to do anything after falling to 26th after his problems at Michigan. He's got 11 races to somehow scramble back into the top-20 and win at least one race and that's all he can concentrate on..He's got to make up 85 points as it is...no time for fooling around with anything but trying to finish up front.
With Shrub seemingly just running laps and not able to challenge for the lead, is it time to be careful about selecting him?
Actually, he's racing a little smarter I think and I don't think with as short a race as this is Toyota will be de-tuning engines again this weekend. The only reason I probably won't put him on my team is his spotty Sonoma record. He finished 17th there last year and has two finishes of 22nd or worse in his last four races with average finish 18.6 in eight starts.
Urt seems to be pushing hard as evidenced by his self spinning himself. Seems he has lost his driving edge. What say you?
No I don't think that's the case..and he should be pretty tough this weekend. Don't forget he's a former Sonoma winner.
Early line-up for Sonoma--24-9-78-48-14,whats your thoughts?The 78 is usually good here,but his finishes are up and down,should I maybe replace him with 42?
Jeff, that's the prelim team I have. As I said earlier the one trade I might make is Bowyer for Busch..Montoya has finished 24th and 32nd the last two years at Sonoma. He could have a great day and team is running stronger coming into this race than last season, but not sure if I can trust JPM.
Have the 48,20,78,14,and 11. I know Ambrose is a must have but unsure of the 78 but then again the 24 hasn't been stellar lately but both have been good at sonoma. What do you think of 48,15,24,14,and 9 as a pre-lineup? Also, when you have the 11 as an example for a good price do sacrifice it? Thanks for all you do sir!
As I was just barely talking about Jason..that team you have might be the one I end up with..I would also say Hamlin is definitely trade material. His only Sonoma DNF was a suspension-based 35th last year, but he has finished 27th or worse in four of his last five races with career average 22.9 in seven starts.
I am concerned that Vickers is going to the back because he is going to miss qualifying due to the Nationwide race.. Am I being overly cautious?? Do you think Gilliland can continue his quality runs at his home track?
Vickers will have to start in the back of the pack after missing practice and qualifying and that will certainly put him in a whole. My thinking Karl is to put the 9 and 14 as my floor picks and that more than opens up enough room to put any three drivers in the rest of your line-up. Gilliland will do okay because he and Sonoma fit like a hand and glove, but 9 and 14 is the best "floor" this week.
What do you think about Ron Fellows as a basement pick?
As I just said about Gilliland. Yes Fellows can have a decent day, but if I'm a betting man 9 and 14 are the floor picks to build everything else off of.
How much better do you think the 78 will do this week compared to when he drove the 51 last year?
Nate that's a hard question to answer. I think the cars will be comparable. Remember 51 gets their chassis from Hendrick Motorsports..engines will be about even..so not sure there's going to be a big gap.
What Road Course Ringers are going to be in both the Johnsonville Sausage 200 at Road America & the Toyota Save Mart 350 at Sonoma?
Fellows, Said and Villeneuve at Sonoma...at Road America Billy Johnson, Michael McDowell, Nelson Piquet, Jr. and Max Papis.
Mark, hope all is well in the QC. Before the last round of green flag stops I had 4 in the top 9 w/the 16, 99, 48, 17. Oh well. This week for Sonoma I have on Y!: 15-9-42-13 and ESPN: 48-16-9-78-42. Thoughts? Also out of the 13, 38, 10 and 33 (Fellows) who should I pick on C list? Thinking Mears can get me a top-20.
Thanks Nick...Y! 42 and 13 concern me..even though Vickers starting way back I think he'll out run the 13.. ESPN..I think you definitely have to find a way to get Stewart on the team and probably Bowyer too. ..trade 16 and 78.
Do you think the regular cup guys will put up with Jacques usual bump and run or out of my way I'm coming thru methods?
No I don't they will Zippy...in my preview this week down at the bottom I specifically say if he does a regular like he did Danica at Road America, he'll get punted and won't finish the race.
Gilliland does seem to do well at this track but he isn't in your top 30. Can you give me your reasoning?
Honestly, as I look at the top-30 now I would add him and drop Labonte..and put him just ahead of Mears.
I have my lineup set at 48,9,24,15, and 29 tell me that isn't the best lineup you've seen?
You had me up until the 29...finished 16th last year and his average finish is 16th. In last six he's been top-9 three times...A little inconsistent but Harvick is on a roll so you never know..He comes through with a top-10 you could be looking pretty good.
Hi Mark. Is there concern with Jr. blowning another engine? Which lineup is better: 48,15,14,9, & 78 or 48,15,22,9,
Yes and no...having two let go in last four races that's certainly a concern...but this is a very short race and unless you miss a shift the engines aren't really pushed to the limit..no high sustained RPMs etc..and your second team had only four drivers so please resend.
Is nascar subsidizing any of the cars at Sonoma so there is a 43 car field?
Not that I'm aware of Roscoe. They do know they'll get at least 50-60K to start so with only 43 going out there that's a guarantee.
Mark I have the 48, 20, 14, 5 & AJ. Thinking of blowing it up and going with the 48, 14, 9, 15
I'm on pins and needles...and the fifth driver is??????
Hi Mark! Why is the #20 such a big underdog to win on Sunday? He is a cup contender. Is he that bad on road courses? or does Vegas not know enough about NASCAR. Thanks!
Chris this is what I know about Kenseth and Sonoma... He finished 13th at Sonoma last year and although he has three top-15 finishes in his last five races, he has yet to post a top-10 finish at this track in his career and average finish 20.8 in 13 starts.
If the 29 gets a top 10 I'll come on next week and say I told you so! And I'll be sitting top spot on your leaderboard for the segment! Thanks for the advice Mark! Have a great week.
Easy Nate...didn't say Harvick was the worst pick in the world either..so ease up on the shovel and dirt...lol
48,15,14,9, & 78 or 48,15,22,9,
I'd go with the first one Jill assuming 78 is on the second team as well..
As always thanks for the tip Mark. You think some good runs by Vickers in the 55 3 of the next 4 weeks will help him lock up that ride next year? Also, what do you think of Hamlin maybe getting season ending back surgery to finally fix his back since the Chase looks done?
Vickers understands timing in life is everything and some good runs now could put him back in Sprint Cup racing full-time with a very good team. He'll be pushing hard that's for sure. As for Hamlin, he's not done yet, it's not looking good. This track is bad for him..so he's going to have to rip off ten oustanding runs in a row starting with Kentucky to have any chance to make the playoff.
I know Jayski has Said listed as entered but Nascrap.com doesn't. Just verifying that you know Said will be racing for sure.
It isn't official...but sources have told Jayski and I that's the case...just saying.
48,15,14,9, &78 or 48,15,22,9,55
Jill..you're giving me a headache lol....I'm still going with team one...
did not show up it is the 24 to go with 48, 14, 9, 15
I can live with that team Chuck..all top-10 or better potential.
Hah Oh I know. I was only kidding with you Mark. I just like the wild pick and the momentum is all. I really enjoy comparing my picks every week to an expert like you though. And think it's awesome you do this chat every week! So thank you.
Thanks for the props Nate...I have fun doing the chats so we all win!..but the way I've been scoring this year I should be a "so called expert"..lol
Hi Guru! Which four of the 48,15,24,14,78 is the best ESPN team with the 9 as a floor? In Y!, I need two of A) 14,15,24; two of B) 22,42,55; and two of C) 10,13,38,51,or anyone below 16.0 EPSN value. Sorry for my many questions today. Thanks as always for giving more insight then other fantasy sites and answering our questions!
Jonathan I think that would be 48,15,24, and 14....In Y 14,15...22,42..then 10, and close call between 38 and 13....no idea how the 51 will run...and the more questions the merrier.
Will Jr. be able to stay in the chase? Will the 47 have a new driver next year like AJ or Vickers?
Yes Jill I think Junior will make the Chase..he just has to come out of Sonoma with something decent and then he should be good to go until they get to Watkins Glen...and given how the 47 is running there very well could be a different driver in that car next season. That wouldn't be a surprise or a shocking moment.
What was the Other Road Course in California is Now Which I Think was Riverside Raceway?
Yes, it was Riverside Raceway and I actually broadcast the last race there in 1988 on MRN when Rusty Wallace won. Wow that dates me a little don't you think?...lol
Sad to hear Phoenix Racing will either be sold or closing down after Indy. That bunch are real racers and do a hell of a job with limited resources.
I've been told that team owner James Finch just landed a huge construction job and that could fund the team a little farther down the road and there have been people at the shop looking at the equipment and inventory with an interest in buying the operation. Finch is a one of a kind and I'll hate to see the day he walks away.
What Is Riverside Raceway Now?
Houses and shopping center I was told.
That's going to do it for me today...As I said I came on early because I had to jump off...got to get a check-up before getting on the plane for Sonoma tomorrow. Race day chat Sunday at 12:30 eastern so please join us again...Until then have a great week...Sad to say but must "The Guru has left the building"!