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Fantasy Racing: Bristol

Nick Bromberg | Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Saturday, March 20 2010

Food City 500
Bristol Motor Speedway
Sunday March 21, 1PM ET, Fox

Race Facts: Bristol’s two pit roads are considered one under caution, but are separate during green. That tends to bite drivers in the butt, so odds are someone will get the rules confused on Sunday… The1971 race didn’t have any cautions. The first 50 laps Sunday won’t even get to have that distinction… 80% of winners at Bristol start in the top 10, so watch qualifying closely.

Five to Drive:

Mark Martin: Martin has the most top fives of any active driver at Bristol with 16 and had a pretty quick car in Friday’s first practice. I don’t know if I’d take martin to win on Sunday, but you could do much, much, much worse than Martin.

Joey Logano: Yes, Logano was quickest in Friday’s first practice, but ran well at Bristol last year despite a wreck in the summer race and a blown engine in the spring race. Logano’s been considerably better this year and has only had bad finishes because of incidents that weren’t of his making. He’s a good sleeper choice.

Kyle Busch: Yes, it’s a cop-out having the two-time defending champion in this column, but this is just a friendly reminder that Kyle has won the last two races at Bristol and shouldn’t be ignored. And as a matter of fact, neither can Kurt, either. He’s tied with Jeff Gordon with the most wins of any active driver at Bristol.

Carl Edwards: Carl’s pretty good at Bristol and something tells me that he’s going to be really good this weekend. This is nothing more than a hunch pick, however, so make of it what you will.

Juan Pablo Montoya: Juantoya finished 9th in the spring race a year ago and despite finishing 25th in the summer race, he was incredibly hard to pass. If the high line isn’t affected by the new SAFER barriers on the straights, Juan could be the master of that top groove Sunday.

Two to Boo:

Elliott Sadler: Since finishing second in 2005, Sadler hasn’t finished higher than 13th at Bristol. Yes, he’s also a former winner and it looks like Richard Petty Motorsports is slowly improving, but don’t bank on Sadler for anything Sunday.

Jimmie Johnson: This one is obviously a bit of a stretch, but JJ has never won at Bristol and his track record is not nearly as good here as it is other places. Before he grabbed top 10s in both races last year, his last top 10 was in 2005. He’s not a bad play by any means, but if your league has a driver limit, save him until next week.

Stone Cold Lock of the Week:

Jeff Gordon: Gordon’s due (Pun! So is his wife with their second child, a boy) for a win, and he’s still one of the drivers to beat even at Bristol even though he hasn’t reached Victory Lane since 2002. I don’t expect a Vegas-type performance from Gordon, but he’ll close the deal on Sunday and be the answer to yet another NASCAR trivia question, this one being “who won the last race with the wing?”

Nick Bromberg | Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Saturday, March 20 2010
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