May 2, 2009

Stewart still close to victory

Tony Stewart finished second in the Crown Royal 400 to earn his fourth top-five in the last five races. He remains poised on the cusp of his first victory as an owner/driver. Notably, Ryan Newman finished fourth to join him in the top five.

Our View: This was also Stewart's fourth second-place finish at Richmond in the last six races. You will want to make a note to yourself to have him on your roster there in the fall.

Hornish posts career best finish

Sam Hornish Jr. earned a career-best finish of sixth in the Crown Royal 400 at Richmond. His previous best was notched only two weeks ago at Phoenix.

Our View: It wasn't a clean run, but NASCAR pays points for finishes and not style. Along the way, Hornish crashed Kevin Harvick and Marcos Ambrose while both of those drivers were running in the top 15.

Kyle Busch sweeps weekend

Kyle Busch was perfect this weekend. He won Friday night's Nationwide race and the Crown Royal 400 on Saturday.

Our View: Busch is a perfect example of putting your personal feelings aside when setting your fantasy lineup. Love him or hate him, Busch is earning a ton of points.

Kahne on the cusp

Kasey Kahne is on the cusp of the top 12, but he needs more consistency to maintain a spot in the Chase, according to

Our View: The next few races are not only pivotal for the sixth-year driver, this season is key. Richard Petty Motorsports seems to be making a lot of positive moves, and marquee rides are hard to come by, but Kahne's long term reputation is on the line. Like all NASCAR drivers, he wants to achieve double digit wins in a season, and that is not going to happen at RPM anytime soon.

Kenseth frustrated

Matt Kenseth is frustrated with his performance so far in 2009, according to He says that his victories in the first two weeks of this season are a long way in the past.

Our View: To put his season in perspective, however, Kenseth is ahead of where he was at this stage last year. In the first nine races of 2008, he earned one top-five with an average finish of 21.8. This year, he has three top-fives and an average finish of 18.0. Still, his inconsistency has made him a difficult pick on most tracks.

It's raining in Richmond

Rain threatens to delay Saturday's race at Richmond, and it will give the drivers a green track on which to compete.

Our View: Whenever the unexpected occurs, it is generally easier to concentrate on veteran drivers.

IRL: Vision Racing flies high

Vision Racing's next top-five could be their biggest. In 140 combined starts in the IRL Series with Ed Carpenter, Ryan Hunter-Reay and seven more drivers, they have amassed 11 such finishes, but one more at Indy would be incredibly special. Car owner Tony George also owns Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Our View: They are headed in the right direction. The current high-water mark for Vision Racing came in the April 5th season opener at St Petersburg. For more on this story, check out

Pit stall selections

Jayski has posted the pit stall selections on his site. As expected, pole sitter Brian Vickers has the first stall before leaving pit road.

Our View: Races are won and lost in the pits, so if you have a close choice to make, Vickers, Jeff Gordon, and Mike Bliss have the best slots with an opening in front of them.

IRL: Indianapolis Avg. Finishes

Want to dominate your IndyCar league? It never hurts to plan ahead and here is a list of the average finishes at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in the IRL during the last five years. Dario Franchitti, with an average of 7.0 and Scott Dixon at 8.2, but Vitor Meira cannot be counted out of posting his first top-five of the season. He tops this list with an average finish of 6.0 in his last five starts and he came up one position short last year behind Dixon.

Indianapolis Average Finish
Last Five Years

DriverAvg. FinAvg StartAttempts
Vitor Meira6.009.405
Dario Franchitti7.007.254
Michael Andretti8.0012.002
Scott Dixon8.207.005
Dan Wheldon8.405.805
Scott Sharp 8.7510.754
Bryan Herta9.0019.003
Marco Andretti9.6714.003
Helio Castroneves 10.004.005
Danica Patrick10.506.754
Adrian Fernandez10.5010.002
Tony Kanaan11.203.805
Davey Hamilton11.5019.002
Ryan Briscoe12.6711.333
Alex Barron13.3324.003
Sam Hornish Jr13.504.754
Kosuke Matsuura14.7510.254
Buddy Rice15.0012.004
Ed Carpenter15.0015.605
Buddy Lazier 15.2023.205
Townsend Bell16.0013.502
Roger Yasukawa16.2520.004
Felipe Giaffone 17.0026.333
Anthony Foyt IV17.5024.502
Bruno Junqueira 18.3310.333
Tomas Scheckter 19.2010.605
Jeff Simmons19.5023.004
Jaques Lazier20.0026.333
Darren Manning20.7515.754
Al Unser Jr22.3323.003
Richie Hearn 22.6727.333
Sarah Fisher 23.0020.673
John Andretti23.0022.502
P J Jones 23.5031.502
Milka Duno25.0028.002
Jeff Bucknam27.0021.502
Marty Roth28.7531.004
A J Foyt IV30.5024.502
Larry Foyt 31.6725.003