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NASCAR Energy Rankings: Brad Keselowski enters combine with Darlington win

Brad Keselowski with his win Sunday at Darlington Raceway not surprisingly puts him back in the top 10 of these power rankings, but he’s not the only one making a return to this list. Also returning is the driver who finished right behind him, Ty Gibbs, who snapped out of a slump with a solid

NASCAR Energy Rankings: Brad Keselowski enters combine with Darlington win

Brad Keselowski together with his win Sunday at Darlington Raceway not surprisingly places him again within the high 10 of those energy rankings, however he is not the one one making a return to this checklist.

Additionally returning is the driving force who completed proper behind him, Ty Gibbs, who snapped out of a droop with a stable day.

Gibbs and Alex Bowman are the one drivers on this checklist who usually are not robotically certified for the all-star race.

We’ll check out every driver’s all-star historical past and whether or not they’ll do higher or worse than typical (the rankings are based mostly on 2024 efficiency, weighted to more moderen races).

1. Kyle Larson (Final Week: 1)

Larson is the defending winner of the all-star race however can have a tough time repeating that feat. That is not as a result of he’s doing worse this yr (he is main the Cup standings) however as a result of he will not apply nor qualify the Hendrick Motorsports automotive (Kevin Harvick will try this) and the group will not take part within the heats as Larson focuses on Indianapolis 500 qualifying. With the 2 totally different tire compounds (one softer than the opposite) and a repave and no time on the monitor, different drivers will likely be a step forward of Larson.

2. Denny Hamlin (LW: 2)

Hamlin is beginning his 18th consecutive all-star race. He has one win (2015) and one second (2022). Contemplating his short-track prowess this yr and the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 11 group’s means to adapt to totally different situations, Hamlin could be the favourite going into the occasion.

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3. William Byron (LW: 5)

Byron will make his sixth begin in the principle occasion, and he hasn’t completed top-5 in any of them. Whereas he hasn’t been as dominant as earlier within the season, count on the Hendrick driver to doubtlessly have his finest all-star end.

4. Martin Truex Jr. (LW: 3)

Truex is 0-for-13 within the all-star race together with his final top-10 end being a second in 2010. He has an excellent likelihood of ending top-10 this yr and whereas he has proven the power, to adapt to conditions (he received the 2023 Conflict on the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum), this race usually comes all the way down to technique, and that usually hasn’t translated into success for the JGR driver in recent times.

5. Tyler Reddick (LW: 8)

Reddick has competed in two fundamental occasions and was third final yr. He would not be in my top-three this yr as he’s coming off making a nasty transfer to break Chris Buescher’s day at Darlington, which might make the 23XI Racing driver only a tick tentative — and this race probably would require a driver to take dangers to get to the entrance.

Chris Buescher & Tyler Reddick get into bodily altercation after collision at Darlington

6. Chris Buescher (LW: 9)

Buescher has made three begins within the all-star race with a better of eighth. He began second however completed sixteenth final yr. Anticipate the RFK Racing driver to earn his career-best end on Sunday night time.

7. Brad Keselowski (LW: NR)

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Keselowski is 0-for-15 within the all-star race. He was second in 2012, 2016 and 2021. He snapped a 110-race winless streak Sunday at Darlington, so will this all-star winless streak finish Sunday night time? In all probability not. North Wilkesboro is not like many different tracks (it is a 0.625-mile monitor and was simply repaved) so the main focus of RFK Racing’s work on its Cup program in all probability is not for this race.

8. Chase Elliott (LW: 4)

Elliott received the 2020 all-star race at Bristol and has three top-5s within the occasion. The Hendrick driver loves old-school racing as he was fifth on this occasion final yr. Anticipate one other top-5 for Elliott this yr.

Ty Gibbs, Alex Bowman and Ross Chastain on being in a good playoff place as second half of season approaches

9. Alex Bowman (LW: 7)

Bowman would not have a top-5 in his 5 all-star begins and did not compete within the occasion final yr as he was nonetheless recovering from a damaged again. The Hendrick driver has to attempt to race his means into the principle occasion — he’ll problem for a kind of switch spots however competing for the win Sunday night time is a tricky ask.

10. Ty Gibbs (LW: NR)

Gibbs completed second within the Open final yr to earn one of many switch spots to the principle occasion, the place he completed ninth. He additionally did the tire take a look at a few months in the past at North Wilkesboro. A top-5 end is not out of the query for the Joe Gibbs Racing driver.

On the verge: Christopher Bell, Ryan Blaney, Ross Chastain, Noah Gragson, Michael McDowell, Bubba Wallace

Bob Pockrass covers NASCAR for FOX Sports activities. He has spent a long time masking motorsports, together with over 30 Daytona 500s, with stints at ESPN, Sporting Information, NASCAR Scene journal and The (Daytona Seashore) Information-Journal. Observe him on Twitter @bobpockrass.

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