NASCAR: Federated Auto Parts 400 preview
The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads to Richmond, Virginia for the Federated Auto Parts 400 Saturday night. A race that for many years was the last of the regular season has been moved to the second race in the 10-week playoff schedule. Saturday night short-track racing always produces fireworks that NASCAR fans love. We’ve got our eyes on two drivers who are contenders to find victory lane.
Odds to win the Federated Auto Parts 400
|Driver||Federated Auto Parts 400 Odds|
Martin Truex Jr.
Denny Hamlin (+600)If you’ve been reading our articles over the last month, you know how we feel about Denny Hamlin. He is having a great year, and the Virginia native has always been good at Richmond. He has made 26 starts there, with three wins and 12 top-five finishes. He leads all active drivers in laps led with 1,659. He’s never had a DNF at the track.
No driver has been hotter over the last 15 Cup Series races. He has two wins and seven top-five finishes in that span. In the last short-track race (Bristol), Hamlin ran one of the best races of the year in dramatic, come-from-behind fashion. Hamlin has dominated Richmond races before. He has led more than 200 laps in the race on four occasions. With the way he has been running this summer, we see no reason why he can’t make a big run at the checkered flag Saturday night.
Kevin Harvick (+550)Kevin Harvick is like your favorite rock band. It doesn’t matter where he goes—he’s going to put on a show. We believe he is the Cup Series boogeyman at the moment. The Jimmy John’s No. 4 SHR Ford Mustang is freaky fast right now. In his last six Cup Series races, Harvick has two wins and four top-five finishes, and he has led the most laps in that span (215). At Richmond, Harvick has scored three wins in 37 starts. In the last five races at Richmond, Harvick has four top-five finishes. He also won the pole in the last two Richmond races, which leads us to believe he will qualify well again. He has led an impressive 1,139 laps during his career at Richmond.
We’ve got a sneaky feeling Harvick could be scary good Saturday night. He hasn’t won a bunch of short-track races in his career. However, Harvick is a problem right now that few seem able to solve.