The NASCAR Cup Series continues today with the 2021 Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond Raceway. Read on below to see my prediction for who will win the race, as well as my top 10, dark horse, and driver to fade predictions.
Winner: Denny Hamlin- Hamlin has been off to a great start in 2021, with 7 top 5’s in 9 starts, including 4 3rd place finishes. Hamlin has also had great success at Richmond, with 3 wins and 13 top 5’s in 28 career starts. I predict that Hamlin will get the job done today and bring home his first win of the season.
Top 10: Kyle Busch- Busch has had a bit of a slow start to the season by Kyle Busch standards, with only 4 top 10’s so far. Nevertheless, Busch brings a strong track record into Richmond, with 6 wins, 18 top 5’s and 23 top 10’s in 30 career starts, including 2 wins and 3 runner ups in his last 10 starts at the track. A top 10 at Richmond is almost guaranteed for Busch, but don’t be surprised if he’s contending for the win late in the race.
Dark horse: Christopher Bell- Even though Bell is a winner already this season, he is still considered a dark horse when compared to teammates Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr., and Denny Hamlin. He has 4 top 10’s already this season and brings a stellar track record into Richmond, winning here 3 times in 5 career Xfinity Series starts. I have high hopes for Bell today and believe he will finish in the top 10, but I also wouldn’t be surprised if he makes a push for a top 5 late in the race.
Driver to fade: Ryan Blaney- Richmond has been a thorn in Blaney’s side in his young career, with no top 10’s in 9 career starts and a best finish of 18th. I expect the trend to continue and expect Blaney to finish outside the top 10 for the 10th time.