Heading into the Month of July, Team Penske and Joe Gibbs Racing looked like the clear cut favorites to be heading to the Homestead-Miami Speedway in hopes of a 2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championship. You could make a strong case that all four Championship 4 drivers would come from these two camps.
Through the first 16 races run, JGR and Penske combined to win 15 of them including the first nine to start the season off with. But, they’d only win one of the next seven after that point. Then, out of the last five, they’ve won four. The problem is, JGR has won all five of the last 12.
Penske, hasn’t won a race since June 10 with Joey Logano’s victory in the rain delayed race at the Michigan International Speedway. If they want to win a championship, that drought has to end sometime soon.
Logano hasn’t won in his last 13 starts. Brad Keselowski is riding a 16 race winless streak. Ryan Blaney hasn’t won in the last calendar year as his last trip to victory lane was actually in this race last year.
Can they end this drought in Sunday’s Bank of America ROVAL 400 (2:30 p.m. ET/NBC/PRN/SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)?
Currently, despite their drought, Keselowski and Logano are sitting pretty in terms of advancing out of the first round. Keselowski, is +55 on the playoff bubble while Logano is +50 himself. The odds of both of them letting the wheels fall off on Sunday are slim to none.
Plus, Keselowski has been racing pretty good lately. He has four top five finishes in his last five starts on the season including seven top 10’s in his No. 2 Ford in his last nine overall. Also, he was 14th, 11th and third respectively in practice this weekend and starts 11th on Sunday.
Logano, has been the polar opposite. Six of his last eight starts on the season have resulted in a finish outside of the top 10. He has one top five in his last 11 starts overall. He’s finished 23rd in both road course races run in 2019 as well. But, the defending Cup Series champion was 15th, third and 12th respectively in practice this weekend and rolls off third.
Blaney though is the one that they’re watching. He’s only +8 on the bubble but as I said, did win this race last year and was third in Sonoma and fifth at Watkins Glen. He also has six top 10 finishes in his No. 12 Ford in his last nine starts of the year too. Blaney, was 10th, first and sixth in practice and rolls off ninth.
I think Blaney has the best shot among the three of winning on Sunday as they’d take it. They need to get him onto the Round of 12 and hope that Keselowski can keep his momentum going and Logano can gain some.