Race: Pennzoil 400
Date: March 7th at 3:30pm
Venue: Las Vegas Motor Speedway
2019 Winner: Joey Logano (2:58:11)
Las Vegas Motor Speedway — Built as a road course with a drag strip in 1972. It was later purchased by Richie Clyne and morphed into the current track in 1996. The 1.5 mile asphalt oval has banking turns of 20 degrees with a front and backstretch of 9 degrees. The distance and oval mimics Kansas Speedway in terms of similar tracks on the circuit. The track itself has seen success in ratings and revenue brought in. So much so that it will be taking the race from New Hampshire in 2018.
Martin Truex Jr. (first selection this year) — Last year Truex finished 20th at Vegas, that was his first finish outside the top eight in four years. He finished 25th at a wreck filled Daytona, improved to 12th the Daytona road race and then placed 3rd last week at a relatively clean Homestead.
Brad Keselowski (second selection this year) — Keselowski is averaging a 6th place finish here over the last five years. He won here in 2014 and 2016 and has six other top 10 finishes to go with those two wins over the last seven years.
High Risk/High Reward
Joey Logano (first selection this year) — Logano’s last 10 races at Las Vegas have included: six finishes within the top five and just two finishes outside the top 10. He struggled a bit out of the gate this year with just one top 10 finish through three races this season.
Ryan Blaney (first selection this year) — Blaney has yet to crack the top 15 this season and I think that changes at Las Vegas where he has five finishes inside the top seven across his last seven races here.
The Dark Horse
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (first selection this year) — Stenhouse has been in ‘meh’ land through the first three races of this year finishing worse than 10th but better 20th. Las Vegas has been friendly for him lately with two finishes inside the top 10 across his last three races here. He typically does better in the non-playoff race here too.
Fun Fact: The winner of this race receives a Championship belt and not a trophy
Favorite: Avg Finish 17th (42nd Percent)
High Risk/High Reward: Avg Finish 20th (50th Percent)
Dark Horse: Avg Finish 15th (37th Percent)