The Checkered Flag: STP 500


If the famous quote “Rubbing is Racing” is true, then we are back to racing this weekend. Martinsville is short track racing at its finest. Tempers will flare and cars are going to get beaten up tomorrow as the bumpers will be used more on the first 20 laps than they have been used in a year so far! This week at theDPA, we will look to give you our top, mid, and lower tiered drivers to help you cruise past the finish line, and straight into the money!

Blue Chip Studs

Kyle Busch | #18 | $11,000

The driver of the #18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota has been strong at Martinsville historically, and I anticipate that the outcome will be no different tomorrow. Busch qualified in 2nd place and has been fast in both practice sessions as he looks to put the M&M’s Toyota in Victory Lane for the first time this year.

Martin Truex Jr. | #78 | $10,700

Truex was dominate last week in Fontana, and brings his Furniture Row Racing Toyota to Martinsville with the hopes of making it 2 in a row. Truex unloaded fast, qualified on the pole, and has been the fastest car in both practice sessions. I doubt he will be as dominant as last week, but he looks poised to remain in the class of the field.

Brad Keselowski | #2 | $10,100

The Team Penske driver has been a little frustrated with the way his season has started. He will look to get his Reese/Drawtite Ford into Victory Lane this week for the first time this year at a track that has been one of his favorites historically. Keselowski finished 1st and 4th at Martinsville last year, and looks to build on that recent success with a strong showing again on Monday.

Steady Eddies

Clint Bowyer | #14 | $8,300

The driver of the Stewart-Haas Racing Ford will roll off 9th this week in Martinsville. Bowyer has historically run well in Martinsville, and seems to have a car that can do so again this week. Bowyer was 10th fastest in Happy Hour yesterday, and looks to keep his Haas Automation Ford in the top 10 all day.

Ryan Newman | #31 | $7,900

Newman looks to keep the #31 car from Richard Childress racing Chevrolet out of trouble in Martinsville. Newman qualified 14th this week, and has been consistently fast in practice. Look for Newman to move into the top 10 early and stay there for most of the day.

Daniel Suarez | #19 | $7,500

Suarez looks to put his Joe Gibbs Racing #19 Arris Toyaota solidly inside the top 10 this week. Suarez has been really fast in practice as he was 3rd fastest in Happy Hour yesterday. Suarez qualified in the 23rd position which will give him plenty of opportunities to gain valuable DK points on the track as he moves up through the field.

Bargain Bin

Trevor Bayne | #6 | $6,000

Bayne has the #6 Roush Fenway Racing Advocare Ford qualified in the 27th position for todays race. Bayne has been pretty good over his short career at Martinsville and will have plenty of opportunities to move up through the field today.

AJ Allmendinger | #47 | $6,400

Allmendinger is essentially a free square this week. At $6,400, he is too cheap with his history at Martinsville. He finished 6th at this race last year and will be looking to put his Kroger Click List Chevrolet solidly inside of the top 10 again today. AJ Allmendinger is the DPA Play of the Day.

Ty Dillon | #13 | $5,600

Dillon has the Germain Racing #13 rolling off in the 32nd position. Dillon has been fast in practice, and hopes to keep his GEICO Chevrolet out of trouble as he makes his way to the front. If he can exercise some patience throughout the day, he put himself in position for a strong finish.

Tune in for more from our own Bryan Holland (twitter:@BhollandHolland) throughout the NASCAR season at