Everything about Talladega is unpredictable. It’s a wildcard race and will be ran like one on Sunday. Can Ford continue their recent superspeedway dominance including winning nine of the last 10 on the 2.66-mile Alabama race track? If so, will a Penske driver be the one celebrating victory on Sunday evening? Penske, has won two of the last four spring races at Talladega including five of six in the fall race as well. Ford, went 1-2-4-5 in the fall race last October which was won by Penske’s Ryan Blaney.
We know manufacturers are going to work together, so don’t expect much games being played outside of their respective car makes. Toyota is at a disadvantage because of that and haven’t won a race since 2009 at Talladega and just three there overall.
Then, at the end, we should see a wild shootout tandem style?
Will it be a first time winner celebrating? 6 of the last 11 superspeedway race winners in Cup competition have earned either their first or second career victories in them. But, 4 of the last 6 at Talladega and 5 of the last 7 at Daytona, saw drivers won their first or second superspeedway race on them too.
This is all a very unpredictable race that will be fun to watch it play out.
On Thursday night, the starting lineup was revealed for Sunday’s GEICO 500 (3 p.m. ET, FOX, MRN). That’s big because the top of the owners point may still shine.
Normally starting position shouldn’t matter for a superspeedway race, but for some reason, it has at Talladega. Six straight winners have come from the the top 11 and 10 in the last 11 overall.
GEICO 500 Starting Lineup
Row 1: Martin Truex Jr., Denny Hamlin
Row 2: Kyle Busch, Jimmie Johnson
Row 3: Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski
Row 4: Kurt Busch, Alex Bowman
Row 5: Joey Logano, Clint Bowyer
Row 6: Chase Elliott, Ryan Blaney
Row 7: Matt Kenseth, Ryan Newman
Row 8: Aric Almirola, Tyler Reddick R
Row 9: Austin Dillon, Erik Jones
Row 10: William Byron, Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
Row 11: Chris Buescher, John Hunter Nemechek
Row 12: Matt DiBenedetto, Bubba Wallace
Row 13: Corey LaJoie, Michael McDowell
Row 14: Brennan Poole R, Cole Custer R
Row 15: Gray Gaulding, BJ McLeod
Row 16: Ryan Preece, Quin Houff R
Row 17: Ty Dillon, JJ Yeley
Row 18: Christopher Bell R, Joey Gase
Row 19: Daniel Suarez, Timmy Hill
Row 20: Brendan Gaughan, Garrett Smithley