Why fantasy NASCAR players shouldn’t pick Denny Hamlin to win this weekend – For The Win
NASCAR drivers who win on road courses have a special talent, which is why it’s often a good move to bet on a previous victor at these tracks.
Especially for fantasy NASCAR leagues, past winners Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano or AJ Allmendinger would all be good choices for this weekend’s road course race at Watkins Glen International for the I LOVE NEW YORK 355 on Sunday.
But betting on Denny Hamlin is not the best idea.
Yes, the No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing driver won NASCAR’s 2016 race at the New York track, and his path to victory could still be fresh in his mind. But there’s a possibility Hamlin won’t even drive Sunday because his longtime girlfriend, Jordan Fish, is pregnant and close to her due date, according to NASCAR.com.
That’s a pretty great excuse if he has to miss the race, but as far as the season goes, one absence isn’t much of an issue.
Hamlin already locked himself into the 16-driver playoffs this fall with a win at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in July, so it’s not that big of a deal if he misses one of the last five regular season races. It was Joe Gibbs Racing’s first win of the season before Kyle Busch (FINALLY) got another last weekend at Pocono Raceway.
If he’s out for Sunday, Regan Smith is ready to pilot the No. 11 Toyota.
So while Hamlin can rest easy this weekend career wise if he and Fish end up having their baby, fantasy NASCAR players might want to think twice before picking him to win.
Of course, he could still race and win back for the first time at Watkins Glen since Marcos Ambrose did it in 2011 and 2012, but that’s a lot harder to do if you’re not actually behind the wheel.