M&M’s Fan Appreciation 400 at Pocono Raceway Preview
This week at Pocono will be the 21st race of the Nascar season, and with 14 different winners so far with six races left in the regular season, the stakes could not be higher for the drivers and teams who are right at the cut line of making the 16-driver field for the Nascar Playoffs. It is hard to believe that both Ryan Blaney and Martin Truex Jr., who are both in the top 5 in the regular season point standings, could conceivably not make the Nascar postseason. Check out the best bookmakers for betting on NASCAR.
So, what can we expect from Pocono this week? With six races left to get a win and make the playoffs expect winless teams to take an all or nothing approach to the race. It will make for some exciting racing watching drivers take risks they do not normally take. Still, at the end of the day, more times than not, that strategy ends in catastrophic failure near the end of the race like we saw with Lajoie a couple of weeks ago at Atlanta.
Pocono Raceway, or the Tricky Triangle, as race fans affectionately know is a 2.5-mile triangle track with a different degree of banking in all three turns with 14 degrees in turn 1, 8 degrees in turn 2, and 6 degrees in turn 3, making it a relatively flat track. One thing we have learned from flat tracks this season with the Next Gen car is that it is extremely hard to pass, and the car out front in clean air has a huge advantage over the rest of the field. Last week at the Monster Mile in New Hampshire, we watched Truex Jr. dominate the first two stages of the race until he got into traffic in stage three, and his car went from amazing to terrible in the dirty air. There is a strong possibility we see the same thing at Pocono this weekend. If you are considering placing a bet on this race, I recommend you wait until after qualifying and place your wager on a driver that qualifies near the front. Historically Pocono differs from other 2.5-mile superspeedways like Talladega and Daytona, which have long straightaways and high banked turns with the top 25 cars all within 1.5 seconds of each other.
|Kyle Busch||Chase Elliott||Kyle Larson||Ryan Blaney|
With a race win being ever so important to make this year’s playoffs, Ryan Blaney and Martin Truex Jr. will be doing everything they can this weekend to cement themselves into the playoffs, and both drivers will be looking to get a win on this track. Blaney won the Pocono 400 in 2017, and Truex Jr. is a two-time winner at the track in 2015 and 2018. Other notable drivers who have historically run very well at Pocono include Kyle Busch, who has won 4 times at the track, and Denny Hamlin, who has 6 Cup series wins at the track and 14 top 5’s. If Blaney, Truex Jr., Kyle Busch, or Hamlin qualify well on Saturday, my money will be on them. Other drivers to keep an eye on this week are Bubba Wallace, who ran his best race of the season last week, and Christopher Bell, who got his first win, and it looks like the pit crew swap between those two has worked out well for both drivers. Also, Chase Elliot and Kyle Larson are always potential contenders at any track and, depending on their qualifying runs, could both be the potential favorite for this race.
As it stands right now, prequalifying the top five best bets for the M&M’s Fan Appreciation 400 at Pocono Raceway would have to be based on historical performance and would be Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr., Chase Elliot, Kyle Larson, and Denny Hamlin. However, as mentioned before the top five can drastically change based on qualifying.
Do not forget to join Steve Risley, Joe Spilman, and Ryan Peters on The Grueling Truth Nascar Show Wednesdays as they dive into all the news from around Nascar and give you their top picks for the next race. You can also catch them for the post-race show following every race. You can Find the Grueling truth on Facebook, YouTube, Twitch, Google Podcast, and I Heart radio.
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