Fantasy NASCAR Picks for NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Talladega

Chad Robb@@MrFantasyNASCARCorrespondent IOctober 14, 2013

Fantasy NASCAR Picks for NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Talladega

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    This week the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series heads back to Talladega for the Camping World RV Sales 500.

    The races on the Superspeedways this season have become a game of follow the leader. Passing has become difficult in the Gen-6 car on this type of race track, so some drivers may lead many laps on Sunday.

    Picking the winning driver at Talladega is harder than any other race on the schedule. One wreck could take out half of the field, eliminating most of the teams with good cars.

    This will be the week to rest some of the drivers you have been using a lot this season. Since being at the right place at the right time determines most races at Talladega, every driver in the field has a legitimate chance of winning.

    Each week I list my top 25 drivers for the race and which order I think they will finish. Since the race at Talladega is a total crapshoot, I am going to change the format for this week. Here is a list of drivers who have performed well at Talladega in their careers, drivers who are worth a gamble this week and drivers to avoid…

Top Drivers at Talladega

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    The most important aspect of fantasy NASCAR is to select the drivers who give your team the best chance to win. Below is a list of drivers who have had success on the tricky race track. Any of these drivers would be great selections for your team this week...

    Kevin Harvick is the safest driver for your fantasy NASCAR team this week. He usually hangs out in the back of the pack, which helps him avoid accidents. As the laps come to an end, Harvick makes his way to the front. He will not lead many laps on Sunday, but he may lead the last one.  

    Clint Bowyer learned a lot about restrictor plate racing from Kevin Harvick when they were teammates at Richard Childress Racing. Bowyer won the October races at Talladega in 2010 and 2011.

    Brad Keselowski has become a very good driver at Talladega. He has finished three of the last four races at the race track in the top 10. The other race he finished in the top 15. Keselowski would be a great choice for your fantasy team this week.

    Jeff Burton is not good at many race tracks, but he is worth consideration this week at Talladega. Burton has a habit of making his way to the front at the end of restrictor plate races. He has finished three of the last four races at the race track in the top 10.

    Matt Kenseth won this race last year and finished eighth in the May race at Talladega. He has a series-best 113.7 driver rating at the race track, but do you want to save Kenseth for less risky race tracks? I think I might be a wise decision.

Drivers worth a Gamble

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    The last thing you want to do this week is to select your best drivers for the race at Talladega and have the driver get caught up in an early wreck. This is the week to take chances. The best philosophy this week is to select a combination of the top drivers and some drivers who are seldom used throughout the season. Any of the drivers listed below would be good selections for your team....

    Greg Biffle finished both of the races at Talladega in the top six last year. In May he was involved in an accident. Biffle is worth a gamble this week since he is not very good at the remaining race tracks on the schedule.

    Paul Menard usually drives next to his teammate Kevin Harvick in the restrictor plate races. That is not a bad place to be. Menard could easily finish in the top 10 this week.

    Mark Martin has not been very good since he took over for Tony Stewart in the No. 14 car. Martin is one of the best drivers at qualifying on the superspeedways. He is worth a gamble this week.

    Aric Almirola has finished the last five races at Talladega in the top five. He has never wrecked at Talladega and that is all you can ask for from your drivers this week. Take a gamble with Almirola this week.

    David Gilliland is probably the most underrated driver at Talladega. He finished second in the May race and he has three consecutive top-15 finishes at the race track. For his price, he is worth the gamble this week.

Drivers to Avoid

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    All drivers have a chance of becoming a victim of bad luck at Talladega. You do not want to use your last start with Jimmie Johnson or Kyle Busch at a race track where they have very little control over their finishing position. Below is a list of drivers to avoid this week at Talladega...

    Jimmie Johnson has been the best driver on the restrictor plate race tracks this season. He won both races at Daytona and finished fifth in the May race at Talladega. Why is Johnson on this list? The risk of losing Johnson to an early accident is not worth the reward of his winning the race. Keep Johnson for the races at Martinsville and Phoenix.

    Kyle Busch finished both races at Talladega in the top three. He finished the race at 38th in May. Busch could easily win the race, but there is also a chance he could finish 38th again. Busch should be saved for the safer race tracks on the schedule.

    Jamie McMurray is often viewed as a sleeper pick at the restrictor plate race tracks. The truth is he has not finished in the top 10 at Talladega in the last six races. Avoid using McMurray this week.

    Joey Logano has a streak of four straight races at Talladega where he finished outside the top 20. In the May race he started fourth and finished 35th. Talladega is not one of Logano’s best race tracks.  

    Kasey Kahne usually shows up at the restrictor plate race tracks with a fast car thanks to Hendrick horsepower that is under the hood. His finishes have been feast or famine. In May he finished 42nd and last season he started from the pole and finished 12th in this race. Kahne is not worth the gamble this week. 

Fantasy Picks for Talladega

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    Yahoo! Fantasy Auto Racing Picks

    Group A: Kevin Harvick, Clint Bowyer

    Group B: Jeff Burton, Greg Biffle, Paul Menard, Kurt Busch

    Group C: David Gilliland, Michael Waltrip

    Fantasy Live Picks

    Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth, Kevin Harvick, Michael Waltrip, David Gilliland

    If you need any further advice with your team, look for me on Twitter @MrFantasyNASCAR

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