Author Topic: Crap Shoot 2007, Round 3  (Read 2652 times)

Quack

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Crap Shoot 2007, Round 3
« on: July 07, 2007, 01:53:56 PM »
So the boys head off to Daytona for Round 3 of the 2007 Crap Shoot, otherwise known as restrictor plate racing.  Good luck on your picks, because it's pretty likely that they won't do jack for ya this week.  Just roll the dice, hang on tight, and hope you're not headed back home with a mangled car.

The primary difference between Daytona and Talladega is handling.  At 'Dega, it means very little, while at Daytona, handling is the key to being up front when the checkers fall.  Assuming that they make it to the end, the guys that typically have excellent handling cars at Daytona will be the ones that will be fighting it out at the end of 400 miles in Saturday night's Pepsi 400.  With qualifying being rained out, it pretty much means that if you play the odds, the "regulars" will be up front at the end.

DISCLAIMER: Each of the following is based upon the assumption that the respective driver will make it through the wreck fest.  Please note that it is fully expected that one or more will not.

Who to Watch
Who? #42, Juan Pablo Montoya
Why? Love him or hate him, he's entertaining to watch.  After winning at Infineon Raceway a couple of weeks ago, he's desperate to get a win on an oval track.  He has run pretty well on the plate tracks this year in both Busch and Cup.  The Pepsi 400 very possibly is his best shot at an oval win this season.

Who? #25, Casey Mears
Why? Two words: Hendrick Motorsports.  Oh, and he has run -very- well on the plate tracks so far this year, although bad luck has left him with nothing to show for it.  Look for Mears to be solidly in the Top 10 on Lap 160.  If he has a shot at the win, I think he'll take it.  If not, he'll take what his car will give him.

Who? #26, Jamie McMurray
Why? "MacMary" has always run well at plate races, but always seems to get caught up in "The Big One".  After poor fuel mileage left them with a very disappointing finish at Sonoma in June, the #26 bunch are looking for a break to fall their way.  I think luck will be on Jamie's side under the lights Saturday night, and he'll turn in a solid finish.  He might even pull off the "upset" win.

Who? #38, David Gilliland
Why? When you get to a plate race and you have Yates horsepower, you've got to feel pretty good about your chances.  "Gilligan" has shown a lot of patience (at times) on the plate tracks, which is paramount to winning.  If he can show the same sort of patience for 400 miles Saturday night, I think he has a legitimate shot at a Top 5 finish.

Who? #29, Kevin Harvick
Why? Big paycheck.  So far in 2007 there have been two million-dollar checks handed out to the race winner (Daytona 500, All-Star Challenge).  Guess who picked up both of them?  Ayep, Harvick.  While the Pepsi 400 won't have a million dollar check, it is still guaranteed to be a minimum of a fat $284,550.  He won't win the title this year, but KH might take home all of the big race checks.

Who? #83, Brian Vickers
Why? Even though qualifying was rained out and he's outside the 35 locked-in teams in points, Vickers is in the show as a result of his win at Talladega last fall.  Toyota has shown significant improvements in the horsepower department, and we know that Doug Richert can (and usually does) give Brian a well-handling car.  When you add a driver who is clearly one of top "drafters" to the combination of big horsepower and good handling at Daytona, you're likely looking at a front-runner.  I would not be surprised in the least to see the #83 Red Bull Toyota in Victory Lane in the Pepsi 400.

Who's Going to Win
Picking the winner at Daytona or Talladega is a seemingly impossible task.  The list of drivers that you always have to consider reads like a Who's Who of NASCAR: Dale Earnhardt, Jr, Tony Stewart, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson.  Each of those four is a threat to win on each and very visit to the plate tracks.  If you have any of them chosen as your winner, the odds are most certainly in your favor for at the very least a Top 5 finish, and quite possibly a visit to Winner's Circle.  Far be it from me to necessarily pick against any of these guys, because I think the 2007 Pepsi 400 Winner will come from this list, but since I have to pick just one, here goes...

Junior won't be hoisting the hardware this weekend because, well, simply put, DEI's plate stuff just isn't what it used to be.  Add to that the fact that this will be the first race with Tony Eury, Jr. back on top of the pit box, I think that their communication will be just ever-so-slightly off (which is all it takes to lose a race these days).  Sorry Junior fans, your best shot at seeing an Earnhardt in Daytona's Victory Lane will come in February 2008 when Junior pilots the Hendrick Motorsports #25 Budweiser Chevrolet to a win in the Daytona 500.

Gordon very well might win, but for some reason I just get the feeling that he'll be crossing the stripe in second in the Pepsi 400.  Again though, don't be too surprised to see the #24 Pepsi Monte Carlo SS leading them to the checkers in the Pepsi 400.  (Kinda has a ring to it, doesn't it?)

It's summer time.  When the mercury rises in the thermometer, two things seem to always take place in NASCAR's Cup Series:

1. Jimmie Johnson and the #48 Lowe's car tank, and
2. Tony Stewart and the #20 Home Depot car "smokes" the competition.

So, while I wouldn't necessarily count him out, that means that Jimmie Johnson won't be winning the Pepsi 400 this year (maybe not ever).  Sure, he drives for Hendrick Motorsports who have dominated the Cup Series all season long, including 4 wins by the driver of the #48 car.  Sure, Johnson has won at Daytona International Speedway.  But not in July.

If you want this week's winner to be on your roster, you'll have #20, Tony Stewart in your lineup.  Stewart will be going after his third consecutive July win at Daytona, and I believe he'll get it.  After watching his teammate (#11, Denny Hamlin) get the win last weekend at New Hampshire, Smoke will be itching to notch his first victory of 2008.  Get your climbing gear out, because I believe a fence will be scaled this weekend.

Happy racing.

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Re: Crap Shoot 2007, Round 3
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2007, 07:53:16 PM »
Who? #38, David Gilliland
Why? When you get to a plate race and you have Yates horsepower, you've got to feel pretty good about your chances.  "Gilligan" has shown a lot of patience (at times) on the plate tracks, which is paramount to winning.  If he can show the same sort of patience for 400 miles Saturday night, I think he has a legitimate shot at a Top 5 finish.

Thats all you had to say.
Go #38 M&M's
Heeeer's yur sign!!!

1_Newman_Fan

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Re: Crap Shoot 2007, Round 3
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2007, 08:12:03 PM »
#42, Juan Pablo Montoya and i was just starting to like you... ;) now i think #20 tony stewart or #70 can replace him...
« Last Edit: March 01, 2008, 12:37:18 AM by 1_Newman_Fan »

Quack

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Re: Crap Shoot 2007, Round 3
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2007, 08:23:19 PM »
#42, Juan Pablo Montoya and i was just starting to like you... ;)

LOL!  I can assure you, these articles reflect my completely unbiased perspective of who I think has a legitimate shot at a good finish for that given race.  I do not play favorites with my picks.  I pick who I think will score me the points!  :)

1_Newman_Fan

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Re: Crap Shoot 2007, Round 3
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2007, 08:28:25 PM »
ok ill give that one but its hard to think of him.... :-\
GO poor boy racing WOOT!!!!
« Last Edit: March 01, 2008, 12:37:57 AM by 1_Newman_Fan »

Quack

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Re: Crap Shoot 2007, Round 3
« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2007, 01:09:17 AM »
DISCLAIMER: Each of the following is based upon the assumption that the respective driver will make it through the wreck fest.  Please note that it is fully expected that one or more will not.

Good thing I included a disclaimer!  ;)

Who to Watch
Who? #42, Juan Pablo Montoya

After running in the top 15 all night long, he ended up 3 laps down in 32nd place.

Who? #25, Casey Mears

The last caution did him in.  His bed was made (2-tire stop on next-to-last caution), and he had to lie in it.  Unfortunately for Casey, two tires didn't hold up and he wound up 19th.

Who? #26, Jamie McMurray
Why? He might even pull off the "upset" win.

He did it!  I must admit, I was very happy to see Jamie Mac win tonight.

Who? #38, David Gilliland

He narrowly missed a Top 10 finish (11th).

Who? #29, Kevin Harvick

I wonder if he's going to be buying Montoya any presents this week??

Who? #83, Brian Vickers

Same ol', same ol'.  Brian ran respectably well all night (around 15th most of the night), and ended up 30th, last car on the lead lap, after a crash that was none of his own doing.  Eventually Vickers' bad luck will vanish and he will get a win.

Who's Going to Win
If you want this week's winner to be on your roster, you'll have #20, Tony Stewart in your lineup.

Did I mention the disclaimer??   ;)

HERM

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Re: Crap Shoot 2007, Round 3
« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2007, 01:07:58 PM »
best finish in a long time.  jamie was awesome.