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Driver Recommendations for the 2009 Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway

Posted by chadmusselman on September 14, 2009

The Chase is here! NASCAR’s version of the playoffs will begin on Sunday in Loudon. Hopefully the guys that didn’t make the chase don’t drive too tentatively and we still see some good competition. Not many of the chasers have fared well in New Hampshire lately, and even fewer non-chasers have fared well. It could be interesting.

This week’s recommendations:

Chaser: Denny Hamlin
Denny only has 2 top ten finishes in his last 4 at New Hampshire, but his 8.3 average finish is best among active drivers with more than 1 race here. He has also been the hottest driver in the last 5 races averaging a 6.4 place finish. For his career Denny has a win and 5 top tens in 7 races. The fact that Denny is running hot now, and has the good career numbers, he could be leading the points after this race.

Alternate Chaser: Jimmie Johnson
Jimmie has not performed well in the last few races, but a couple factors are working in his favor this weekend. He’s done very well at this track in his career, and now that the chase is here he’ll turn the intensity up. Jimmie has 5 consecutive top tens at this track, and his average finish of 9.9 is only bettered by Denny Hamlin. He also has 2 career wins at New Hampshire to his credit.

Matt Kenseth
Matt hasn’t fared well at New Hampshire lately, but he still has one of the best average finishes among active drivers. He has to be disappointed with not making the chase, but he’s a pro and I don’t expect him to hang his head and have a bad day. He should do well and contend for a top ten finish. He does have 11 of them in 19 career races.

Clint Bowyer
Surprisingly Clint has been one of the better drivers over the past 5 races averaging a 14.6 place finish. He only has 1 top 10 finish, which was a win in 2007, but I think his hot streak will carry him past the issues he’s had in New Hampshire. I doubt he’ll get another win here, but he should hang out in the top 15 and hopefully finish there.

Darkhorse: Martin Truex Jr.
This has been a nightmare season for Martin sitting 25th in points with no wins and 4 top five finishes. He’s also been one of the worst drivers over the past 5 races averaging a 27.2 place finish. There is good news though; he’s done very well at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway. He has 3 top fives, 4 top tens, and an average finish of 13.7 in 7 career races. Not many may think he has a chance, but don’t be surprised if he has a top 10.

Bonus Darkhorse: Brad Keselowski
I don’t know if Brad will even enter the race this weekend, but if he does he could be someone to put on your team. He’s been fairly solid this season when he runs, and in the New Hampshire race earlier this season he finished up in 6th. Might be a good way to pick someone that not many others have on their team.

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