Crunching The Numbers: 2017 O’Reilly Auto Parts 500

After spending 3 straight weeks out West, the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads back with the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. After coming back East for the paperclip known as Martinsville Speedway, Texas Motor Speedway is a high-speed Quad-Oval; so, a big change of pace. Who will two-step their way into victory lane? Let’s find out!

Texas Motor Speedway Track Specs

  • Track repaved for 2017 season
  • Track Configuration: 1.5 Mile Quad-Oval
  • Scheduled Laps: 334 (501 miles)
    • Stage 1 End Lap: 85
    • Stage 2 End Lap: 170
  • Turns 1 – 2 banking: 20°
  • Turns 3 – 4 banking: 24°
  • Frontstretch
    • Length: 2,250 feet
    • Banking: 5°
  • Backstretch
    • Length: 1,330 feet
    • Banking: 5°
  • Pit Road Speed: 45mph (maximum before speeding penalty is 50mph)

 

Trends of the Race

  • Overtime: 2 times since 2004; most recently in 2014
  • Caution Finishes: 0
  • Rain Shortened: 0

Trending of the past 5 races:

  • Margin of Victory 1.846 seconds
  • 6 cautions
    • Lap 28 for the first caution
    • Lap 270 for the final caution (64 laps before the end)
  • 18 drivers on the lead lap

Trending of the past 10 races:

  • Margin of Victory 1.888 seconds
  • 6 cautions
    • Lap 31 for the first caution
    • Lap 278 for the final caution (56 laps before the end)
  • 16 drivers on the lead lap

O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 Pole Sitters

  • Pole winners have an average finish of 11.23
  • Average laps lead: 67.77 laps (20.3% of the race)
  • 20.29% of pole winners find their way to victory lane

O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 Winners

  • The average race winner’s starting position is 7.54
    • Denny Hamlin started from P29 in 2010, the furthest back a race winner has started
  • 69.2% of the winners have come from starting in the top 5
  • 76.9% of the winners have come from starting in the top 10
  • The mode, or most common, starting position of the race winner is P2
  • Winning drivers have lead an average of 97.8 laps (29.3% of the race)
    • Fewest laps led by race winner: Jeff Burton lead 1 lap (0.3% of the race) in 2007
    • Most laps led by a race winner: Greg Biffle led 219 laps (65.6% of the race) in 2005
  • There have been 11 different race winners from 7 different teams since 2004
    • Kyle Busch leads the [active] field with 2 wins
    • Roush Fenway Racing lead the field with 4 wins (most recent win in 2012 with Greg Biffle)

Team & Manufacturer Statistics

Team Penske is off to another great start in 2017. With the best average finish this season, and 2 wins by Brad Keselowski, they are making the Ford camp look mighty strong. What might surprise some folks is Chip Ganassi Racing has the 2nd best average finish (not including Beard Motorsports, who scored an 11th place finish in the Daytona 500 with Brendan Gaughan). Furniture Row Racing rounds out the podium of best average finish thus far this season.

When it comes to the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, the podium of best average finish consists of Hendrick Motorsports, Chip Ganassi Racing, and Joe Gibbs Racing. Two-stepping and six shooters are common in Texas, and everything is bigger, so look for these teams to make some noise this weekend out West.

O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 Predictions & Analysis

It is no surprise to see young guns Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson at the top of the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 predictions list given their amazing season thus far. These two drivers are also ones that love a hot, slick, and fast track; and that is exactly what Texas Motor Speedway is. However, the track was repaved so will those grooves still be there? Will the high speeds still allow for multi-groove racing? Or, will we see a whole new type of racing? Tune into FOX on Sunday, April 9th at 1:30pm EST to find out!

Ashley Hobbs

Birthday: 9 March 1989 (so I do not have to update my age each year)
Location: Florida (Jersey native, born and raised)

What better way to combine 2 of my favorite things, NASCAR and statistics, than providing y'all with an analytical report each weekend during the NASCAR season.

When I am not crunching the numbers, I spend time with my hubby, 3 black cats (Ninja, Daytona, and Chronos), and I watch too much TV, especially Doctor Who. Why yes, I am a geek and proud! So join forces with me and follow my weekly Crunching The Numbers segment. Who knows, I may surprise you!

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