Atlanta Motor Speedway is the site of this weekend’s NASCAR Cup Series race (the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500), but this isn’t going to be the typical Atlanta that we’ve gotten used to. Thanks to a repave and slight reconfigure, the races at Atlanta look like they’re going to be more like a superspeedway race than a 1.5-mile race, meaning it’s likely we could see some big wrecks here on Sunday afternoon. That also means that pretty much anybody could finish up front this weekend, as it’ll be all about being in the right place at the right time.

As far as the Algorithm goes this weekend, as I always say with superspeedway races, take it all with a grain of salt. This type of racing is very difficult to handicap, especially at what is essentially a brand new race track where we don’t know exactly what to expect on race day. Judging by practice, it looks like we could be in for a crazy race this weekend.

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How the algorithm works: There are quite a few statistics that go into the Power Index formula, including recent performance both overall and at this week’s track specifically, similar track performance, projected strength of the car, practice speeds (when applicable), starting position, and a few other variables.

Before We Get To The Algorithm Results…Thoughts On A Couple Drivers

Bubba Wallace, driver of the #23 McDonald's Toyota, prepares to race prior to the NASCAR Cup Series YellaWood 500 at Talladega Superspeedway on October 04, 2021 in Talladega, Alabama.
Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Kyle Larson – Yes, Kyle Larson looked fast in practice here at Atlanta on Saturday, and he starts back in 21st, so he’s going to a popular Fantasy NASCAR pick this weekend, but make sure you use with caution. Larson simply isn’t very good at superspeedway racing. In a combined 30 career starts at Daytona and Talladega, Larson has a grand total of ZERO top 5 finishes, and only seven combined top 10s (23.3%). With the potential for Sunday’s race at Atlanta to get a bit out of hand, a popular pick like Kyle Larson is probably better to be sitting on your bench than he is in your starting lineup (at least from a strategy perspective).

Bubba Wallace – Love him or hate him, Bubba Wallace is a great superspeedway racer. He finished 2nd in this year’s Daytona 500, giving him three top 5s in the last four races at that track, plus he’s ended up 17th or better in nine of his ten Daytona starts. Over at Talladega, Bubba won the fall race last year and has ended up inside the top 20 in five of his eight starts here. During practice here at Atlanta on Saturday, Wallace really liked his race car and actually quit early and went to the garage because he was so satisfied with it. Bubba has a significantly higher potential than the 26th the Algorithm is giving him this weekend.

Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Algorithm Predicted Finishing Order

RankDriverPower
Index
1.Blaney, Ryan27.90
2.Elliott, Chase27.71
3.Logano, Joey27.36
4.Hamlin, Denny25.22
5.Busch, Kyle24.56
6.Larson, Kyle24.48
7.Harvick, Kevin21.98
8.Truex, Jr., Martin21.28
9.Reddick, Tyler20.37
10.Keselowski, Brad19.89
11.Busch, Kurt18.97
12.Byron, William16.17
13.Bowman, Alex12.80
14.Chastain, Ross10.66
15.Almirola, Aric09.59
16.Buescher, Chris08.63
17.Jones, Erik08.27
18.Dillon, Austin07.96
19.Stenhouse, Jr., Ricky06.78
20.Briscoe, Chase00.63
21.Bell, Christopher-03.71
22.McDowell, Michael-05.89
23.Dillon, Ty-07.33
24.Custer, Cole-08.43
25.Burton, Harrison-08.71
26.Wallace, Bubba-09.42
27.Cindric, Austin-10.83
28.Haley, Justin-13.82
29.LaJoie, Corey-15.19
30.Suarez, Daniel-18.89
31.Gilliland, Todd-20.90
32.Gragson, Noah-22.16
33.Ragan, David-25.22
34.Ware, Cody-29.18
35.Bilicki, Josh-29.37
36.McLeod, BJ-29.42
37.Biffle, Greg-30.54
As someone who has always been obsessed with numbers, Fantasy NASCAR has been the perfect fit with me. I pride myself on the quality of my analysis for each race, and am glad that I have been able to help others along the way. I've been a serious Fantasy NASCAR player for over 10 years now, and I'm just getting started.