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Driver Recommendations for Samsung 500 at the Texas Motor Speedway

Posted by chadmusselman on April 1, 2009

Texas is the next stop. The chasers have done very well at this track with ten of them having at least two top tens in the last four races. That made it tougher to pick non-chasers, but here’s my stab at it.

This Week’s Driver Recommendations:

Chaser: Jeff Gordon
Jeff’s average finish at Texas isn’t so good at 16.1, but he’s done well lately with four top 10s in the last five. This is a track that he’s never won at, so don’t be surprised if he’s extra focused and determined to get his first win here, and his first win since the fall race of 2007 at the Lowe’s Motor Speedway.

Alternate Chaser: Matt Kenseth
Matt has been good at Texas in his career with six top 10s in the last seven races and an average finish of 10.1. One win, five top 5s, and eight top 10s in 13 career races aren’t too shabby. I would have put him as the primary chaser, but after winning the first two races of the season Matt has been on the decline. Did he peak already, or will he fight his way back to the top 10 in points?

Jamie McMurray
Jamie was my darkhorse last week, and came through finishing 10th and moving up 5 spots in the standings. I’ll pick him again this week, but not as my darkhorse. He’s had three top 10s at Texas in the last four races with two of them being top 5s. An average finish of 12.7 in 10 career race is also good. Jamie should repeat his performance of last week and contend for another top 10 finish.

Mark Martin
The first four races of the season were rough for Mark, but after two consecutive top 10s he’s moved up 9 spots in the standings and could be getting his season back on track. He’s done well at Texas with eight top 10s in 16 career races and an average finish of 14.3. He’s had a top 10 finish in the Spring Texas race since 2006. That combined with the turnaround he’s putting together he should have another top 10 run this weekend.

Darkhorse: Martin Truex Jr.
Martin has three top 10s in the last 4 races at Texas, four top 10s in seven career races, and an average finish of 13th. The numbers are OK for Martin, but the problem is he’s only had one top 10 so far this season and doesn’t look very good. Can Texas be his second top 10? I don’t know if he’ll finish up that high, but he should hang out in the top 15 most of the day and may sneak into the top 10.

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