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California – Auto Club 500 – Preview

Posted by chadmusselman on February 23, 2008

Since qualifying was rained out the race lineup is a bit jumbled as they start in the position they finished last season…for the most part.

One of the main story lines will be if Hendrick racing can bounce back from the bad showing in Daytona. Outside of Dale Earnhardt Jr. Hendrick racing had 27th, 35th, and 39th place finishes. Look for them to do better today and get a couple of top 10 finishes.

Another story is Ryan Newman. He took advantage of the opportunity in Daytona to take the win, now can he keep that momentum and get a top 5 or 10 finish? California is a wide open track, which suites his style, so look for him to stay focused, avoid crashes and have a good finish.

As I stated, this is a wide open track that gives the drivers lots of room to maneuver. There are a lot of guys that do well here, but below are 4 drivers that have a real shot at the win.
· Matt Kenseth – He’s been great at California in his last 4 races with two wins and two 7th place finishes
· Kyle Busch – He has finished in the top ten in the last 4 races in California, and had the top car in Daytona. Look for him to continue the good runs.
· Jimmy Jonhson – Don’t forget about the defending series champ. He’s finished 1st, 2nd, and 3rd in 3 of the past 4 races here.
· Carl Edwards – Cousin Carl has 2nd, 3rd, and 4th place finishes recently and is looking to rebound from a somewhat disappointing 19th place finish at Daytona

Others that should do well:
o Kasey Kahne – finished 1st, 4th, 10th in 3 of the last 4
o Jeff Burton – two 4th place and one 5th in 3 of last 4

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