Following a post-race altercation at Las Vegas Motor Speedway this past Sunday, NASCAR announced Kyle Busch, Joey Logano and their respective crews will not face punishment for their actions in the aftermath of the the Kobalt 400.
While the lack of punishment may encourage Busch to perhaps retaliate, Logano says he and Busch have spoken since the incident and cooler heads have prevailed — for now. Don’t expect Joe Gibbs Racing, which has a history with Logano, to be submissive when NASCAR is back in action Sunday in Phoenix. The flat, one-mile track will provide plenty of bumping and grinding, who knows which driver may get loose and create contact.
It’s no secret Kevin Harvick is the driver to beat on Sunday. Just take a look at his career stats at the desert track. Harvick has won six of the last nine races at the one-mile track and boasts a track-record eight victories there. He also claims 13 top-five finishes, and 1,484 laps led. It’s easy to see why he’s the odds-on favorite.
What are the Las Vegas odds for the NASCAR race at Phoenix?
Here are the race odds according to the Westgate Sportsbook:
Key stats to know for Phoenix’s Camping World 500
— Over half (51.2 percent) of Cup Series races at Phoenix have been won from a starting position inside the top 10.
— At one-mile tracks since 2015, Martin Truex Jr. has led the second-most laps behind Kevin Harvick and has finished in the top 10 in half of such races.
— Several teams took part in a Goodyear tire test in February at Phoenix. There were four sessions between two days and Joey Logano was fastest in one, Kevin Harvick was fastest in another and Kyle Larson was fastest in two.
Which drivers are best for fantasy NASCAR at Phoenix?
Jamie McMurray leads active drivers with the most Cup Series starts at Phoenix without visiting victory lane with 27. He might go overlooked because of this but he does have four top 10s at the track and is off to a great start to the season with two top 10s in three races.
Kevin Harvick is going to be chalk on Sunday but if you want to take a contrarian approach, take a cheaper Jimmie Johnson, who leads the series in top-five finishes at Phoenix with 15. Johnson (8.96) is the only active driver with average finish inside the top 10 in a minimum of three races.
Denny Hamlin owns 13 top-10 finishes at Phoenix in 23 career races and has the sixth-best driver rating and average running position at the track among active drivers.
Matt Kenseth has three wins at one-mile tracks since 2015 with an average finish of 9.64 in 11 races.
Who are the sleepers to win the NASCAR race at Phoenix?
Dating back to last season, Chase Elliott claims more top 10s than any Hendrick drivers. Yes, more than defending champion Jimmie Johnson. Elliott has driven in two Cup races at Phoenix and averaged an 8.5-place finish with the second-fastest average green flag speed among active drivers.
Dating back to Phoenix last fall, Kyle Larson has recorded four top-three finishes in his last five races, including two runner-ups. Can he break through on Sunday? The Chip Ganassi Racing driver has the sixth-fastest average green-flag speed among active drivers.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the fall race in 2015 and was fifth at this race last year. Junior missed the 2016 fall race due to a concussion, but his replacement, Alex Bowman, won the pole and led 194 laps before finishing sixth.