The NASCAR XFINITY Series drivers will take to the Texas Motor Speedway on Saturday for the My Bariatric Solutions 300 (3 p.m. ET/FOX/PRN/SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). With that being said, there’s plenty of storylines surrounding this year’s race. Here are the top five.
Over the last 10 XFINITY Series races at Texas, Kyle Busch, Erik Jones, Kyle Larson, Brad Keselowski and Chase Elliott have combined to win all 10 of them. Busch and Jones have combined to win five of the last seven. But, none of those five are entered to race in this weekend’s 200 lap race. Jamie McMurray will be in the No. 42 Chevrolet instead of Larson. Rookie Christopher Bell pilots the same No. 20 Toyota that Jones won both races in last year. The car has won three times since 2015. Ryan Preece is in the No. 18 Toyota instead of Busch. Ryan Blaney is in the No. 22 Ford with Penske instead of Keselowski. Rookie Tyler Reddick is in the No. 9 Chevrolet for Elliott.
Kevin Harvick is the only driver on the entry-list that has won an XFINITY Series race at Texas.
Can No. 22 Ford Go 3 Straight?
The hottest car in the series right now is the No. 22 Ford with Team Penske. That’s good news for this weeks driver Ryan Blaney. Last year, Blaney finished second to Erik Jones in both races on the 1.5-mile track. This year, that same car has won each of the last two races. Both were with two different drivers too.
Brad Keselowski, Blaney’s teammate on the Cup side, won at Phoenix. Joey Logano, Blaney’s other Cup teammate, dominated and won in the last race at Fontana. Numbers and trends show Blaney is next this weekend.
Will Harvick Dominate?
The first two points make this one relevant. Harvick, is the only past winner in the field. He’s won five times at Texas in XFINITY Series competition. He won the Cup race at Texas last Fall. Plus, he’s made one start this season, that resulted in a win. The track was Texas’ sister track in Atlanta.
See why his No. 98 Ford may dominate again?
Will Teams Be Rusty?
After five straight weeks of racing, the XFINITY Series teams/drivers has two weeks off. Now, they’re back to racing. Will that shed any rust? Will that make the Cup drivers entered this weekend the favorites?
JRM Eyeing Strong Weekend
No one has been better all around in 2018 than JR Motorsports. They currently have 1-2-3 in the points standings heading into this weekend’s race. Elliott Sadler hasn’t won since Sept. 2016, but he has five straight top 10 finishes to start the year off. Four of those top fives were actually top five finishes too.
The No. 22 Ford with Penske may be the hottest car heading into this weekend’s race, but Justin Allgaier is the hottest driver. He has four straight top six finishes, the last two being runner-ups. He’s never had a top five finish at Texas before, but that can change on Saturday.
Tyler Reddick had three straight top five finishes and four in his last five tries in the Truck Series at Texas, and heads into this weekend with four top 10 finishes in five starts in 2018. He too can be a factor.