Driver Handicaps: Indianapolis
By: Pete Pistone - @PPistone | MRN.com on July 24, 2014 | 2:50 P.M. EST
Hendrick Motorsports teammates Jimmie Johnson (left) and Jeff Gordon top Indy's Sprint Cup Series win list with four apiece. (Photo: Getty Images)
To assist in making your fantasy racing picks, MRN.com's Pete Pistone helps steer you toward Sunday’s Crown Royal Presents the John Wayne Walding 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Who's HOT at Indianapolis
Jeff Gordon: Will try for a record fifth "Brickyard" win on Sunday and with the way he’s been running this season, he figures to have more than a solid chance at history. Gordon has finished outside the top 10 only twice in his last 10 Indy starts.
Jimmie Johnson: Not statistically Johnson’s best track, but he also has four wins to his credit. There’s no denying Hendrick horsepower and Johnson will battle his teammate Gordon for Indy immortality on Sunday.
Kevin Harvick: Another former Indianapolis winner, Harvick has the speed and horsepower of Stewart-Haas Racing at his fingertips as well as the know-how of getting around the 2.5-mile track.
Tony Stewart: Winning at no other track means as much to Indiana native Stewart, who has the best average finish of current competitors over the last 10 Indy races at 6.6, which includes a pair of wins.
Kyle Busch: Throw out his 38th-place performance in 2009 and Busch has only finished outside the top 10 in nine career Indianapolis Sprint Cup Series starts.
Marcos Ambrose: The Richard Petty Motorsports driver has not been able to get a hold of the Brickyard during his Sprint Cup career and has a 22.5 average finish, including 16th place last year.
Dale Earnhardt Jr.: Has has great respect for Indianapolis and its prestige but unfortunately, hasn't been able to perform well at the track. His last 10 starts have added up to a 21.1 average finish, but he does have a fourth and sixth in his last two outings.
Martin Truex Jr.: Don’t look for the frustrated Furniture Row Racing driver to bust out of his season-long slump at Indianapolis, based on past performances. Truex has just one top-10 finish in nine career "Brickyard" starts.
Kurt Busch: He’ll be hard-pressed to match or top his Indianapolis 500 performance (sixth place) this Sunday. Busch has a 19.9 average finish over his last 10 Indy stock car starts.
AJ Allmendinger: Another driver who was impressive at Indy in open-wheel but has struggled in his NASCAR career. In five starts, Allmendinger has finished 20th or worst three times.
Who to Keep an Eye On at Indianapolis
Jamie McMurray: It’s a big race, right? So keep an eye on McMurray, who won the Brickyard 400 in 2010 and has a knack for performing well on the sport’s biggest stages.
Kasey Kahne: The lone winless Hendrick driver has been very solid at Indianapolis in his career, including a third-place outing in the 2013 edition of the race.
Greg Biffle: Until his 24th-place finish last year, Biffle had a streak of five straight top-10 runs at Indy including a pair of third-place finishes.
Kyle Larson: The rookie driver has the wheel of the Chip Ganassi Racing Target Chevrolet, which came dangerously close to winning the Brickyard 400 a couple times with Juan Pablo Montoya at the controls.
Juan Pablo Montoya: Speaking of JPM, the former Indy 500 winner and current IndyCar driver makes a return visit to "The Brickyard" in a potent Team Penske Ford. Wouldn’t that be an ironic twist, to see Montoya finally kissing the bricks?
MotorRacingNetwork.com Staff Picks
Pete Pistone: Jeff Gordon
Dustin Long: Kyle Larson
John Singler: Ryan Newman
Jeff Wackerlin: Brad Keselowski