Samsung Mobile 500 Preview and Pick to Win

Race: Samsung Mobile 500
Date: Sunday April 18th, 2010
Track: Texas Motor Speedway
Time: 3pm EST
by Virginia Vroom of

Who would’ve thunk it? Ryan Newman pulled out a win last weekend even though no one decided he was worthy. It was very interesting not hearing his name at all during the race and seeing him come into victory lane at the end of the night. Nevertheless, it was a good win for Tony Stewart, who has had a rather lackluster start to this year.

Last year, Tony Stewart was dominating in his first year out as an owner-driver. This year, it’s been a slower climb, but he’s still doing okay. This weekend, Stewart and the others are headed to Texas Motor Speedway, where both he and Newman have a win. The top dogs here, though, are Gordon, Edwards, and the rest of the Roush and Hendrick teammates. Those two teams seem to have this place figured out.

Texas is a 1.5 mile quad-oval with 24 degree banking in the turns and 5 degrees on the straights. The frontstretch is 2250 feet with the backstretch standing at 1330. The quad-oval tracks are a favorite for the Roush probably because they are intermediates. This team has spent a lot of time in research and development at these tracks and it shows. I don’t think that Edwards is going to have a win but he will be strong. Teammates Greg Biffle and Matt Kenseth should shine here. They are 2 of only 6 drivers who scored top 10s in both Texas races last year.

This year has definitely thrown me in a loop. I hope it’s not just me, but it seems like there have been a lot of issues within teams and within the garages. I get a huge feeling of animosity from a lot of the drivers, which is odd, since this sport is usually one huge family. There’s a lot of tension that needs to be worked out so hopefully Texas can be the staging grounds to move on to bigger and better weekends. The races have been great, but the tensions kill the atmosphere.

Regardless, Texas is a great race to watch. It’s one of the fastest tracks on the circuits and just watching the winner with the six-shooters is great entertainment. This weekend is definitely a Roush weekend. While you can never count out Jimmie Johnson, I think that the entire Roush team will outshine the rest. Matt Kenseth is going to be one to watch. He needs a win and he’s been doing consistently better. He’s second in points right now only 36 points behind Johnson. Kenseth will be the one to beat this weekend with teammate Greg Biffle in tow. Johnson is always a contender, but I’m plain sick and tired of picking him and I really think that the Roush guys have a great shot this weekend.

Here’s a recap of your current top 12 in the points after Phoenix:

1. Jimmie Johnson
2. Matt Kenseth
3. Greg Biffle
4. Kevin Harvick
5. Jeff Gordon
6. Clint Bowyer
7. Jeff Burton
8. Carl Edwards
9. Tony Stewart
10. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
11. Joey Logano
12. Kyle Busch

Texas is going to be a good shootout. There’s a lot of speed and a good potential for the Roush guys to show that they’ve still got it.