The GEICO 500 is a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series that is held at the Talladega Speedway in Lincoln, Alabama. Contested over 188 laps on the 2.66m super speedway, it is the 10th race of the 2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. This year’s race will be held on April 28, 2019.
Joey Logano won this race last year and he is also expected to be one of the favorites to win the race again.
Check out the latest NASCAR Drivers standings. These stats were before the Toyota Owners 400 race on April 14, 2019:
|1||Kyle Busch, Toyota||361||3||6|
|2||Denny Hamlin, Toyota||334||2||5|
|3||Joey Logano, Ford||326||1||4|
|4||Kevin Harvick, Ford||301||0||3|
|5||Brad Keselowski, Ford||271||2||4|
|6||Ryan Blaney, Ford||265||0||4|
|7||Martin Truex Jr., Toyota||254||0||2|
|8||Kurt Busch, Chevrolet||253||0||3|
|10||Chase Elliott, Chev||245||0||1|
The odds for the 2019 GEICO 500 aren’t out yet as there is still a race on schedule before it. The Toyota Owners 400 is slated for April 14th. Still, let’s take a look at some of the names who could be the favorites for this race:
Kyle Busch has been the perennial favorite this year. And why not, he’s #1 in the leaderboard in points, wins and Top 5 finishes. Busch finished at 13th place in the 2018 GEICO 500 and 3rd in 2017. Busch has not finished outside the Top 19 in his first six starts of 2019. For sure, he will likely be the top favorite in this race again.
Brad Keselowski should be considered as one of the favorites for the 2019 GEICO 500. Keselowski’s memorable 2009 victory at the GEICO 500 was his first ever Cup series win. He’s gone on to add two more wins in 2012 and 2016 to become one of only eight drivers in history to win the GEICO 500 at least three times. As for current form, Keselowski finished 18th at the Food City 500 in Bristol during his last race. Keselowski has two wins this year as he topped the STP 500 at Martinsville last March 25th and also won the Folds of Honor Quicktrip 500 in Atlanta last February 25th.
Keselowski’s teammate Joey Logano won the GEICO 500 last year and will also likely be among the favorites to win this year’s race as well. Logano has won three races at Talladega in the last four years and his victory at the 2018 GEICO 500 helped him qualify for the playoffs and ultimately led him to win the Drivers championship. The reigning Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion has six Top 10 finishes in 10 races started this year. These include five Top 3 finishes and two victories, the last of which was the Pennzoil 400 at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway last March 4, 2019.
Denny Hamlin is another name who could emerge as one of the favorites to win the 2019 GEICO 500. Hamlin won the GEICO 500 in 2014 and has two Top 5 and three straight Top 10 finishes in Talladega. Likewise, Hamlin’s outstanding track record at the Daytona 500 makes him a favorite at a super speedway with similar traits. Hamlin has a total of six Top 5 finishes in his last eight starts at Daytona and these include two wins, the last of which was just this past February 18th.
Clint Bowyer has two wins at Talladega and barely missed out a third one when he finished second behind teammate Aric Almirola at the Alabama 500 in October 2018. With Ford dominating the track over the last couple of years, Bowyer’s experience with the track and Ford’s success at Talladega should be a good combination. Aric Almirola is also going to be a name to watch not only because of his win at the Alabama 500 but because he has six Top 10 finishes in his last seven races started.
Back in 2017, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. became only the second driver in the last two decades to win the GEICO Cup from the pole position. Stenhouse also won the Daytona 400-mile race that year, giving him his two career wins. With both victories coming in similar superspeedways, Stenhouse may be worthy of a look as well. Ryan Blaney has four Top 5 finishes in his last five starts so he’s in good form. Factor in that Blaney drives a Ford and we may have a longshot worth a second look as well. And yeah, don’t forget Jimmie Johnson who has won here twice, in 2006 and 2011.
I’d like to know first who wins this weekend’s race at the Food City 500 before making my bet. But if we take that race out of the equation, I would be interested in Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano. These men have figured heavily in the picture at Talladega. Keselowski may be the best superspeedway specialist in the field and he is an expert in the draft technique which gives him an advantage in the closing stages of the race. As for Logano, he is the reigning champion in this race and he is also the reigning Drivers champion and with the way that Ford has been dominating at Talladega in recent years, this could be another victory for them at the GEICO 500.
Prediction: Joey Logano