FedEx 400 (2013) Statistics:
Winner: Tony Stewart (lead 0.75% of the race); Kyle Busch lead the most laps (37.5%)
Average Speed: 123.127 mph
Margin of Victory: 0.788 seconds
Lead Changes: 21
Number of Cautions: 7
Caution Laps: 31 (7.75% of the race)
First Caution: 81
Last Caution: 378
Drivers on Lead Lap: 16
2014 Driver Statistics
Week in and week out, Jeff Gordon is proving to be a factor; he is also still sitting at the top of the points as well as having the best average finish. Matt Kenseth is still matching Gordon each week though. Could this be the weekend Kenseth finally gets his first win of the season?
This is NOT the points standings!!! These statistics are the top 16 best average finishes plus any driver who has wins that is not in that top 16.
FedEx 400 Predictions
The drivers that come to mind at Dover are the ones you will want; no surprises at the top here. With Johnson riding the momentum from his Coca-Cola 600 win, will that propel him to the top at Dover (again)? Or will Kenseth finally get his first win of the season? How about Kyle Busch or Carl Edwards grabbing a second victory? All 4 of these drivers can very well make that happen. This is also the time we should start seeing Tony Stewart and Kasey Kahne hit their strides and knock off wins and top 5s/10s consistently.
Dark Horses: Martin Truex Jr., Brian Vickers, Kurt Busch
Avoid: A.J. Allmendinger, Jamie McMurray, Paul Menard
Joe Gibbs Racing has 2/3 drivers in the Chase (at this point) as well as having the best average finish. Hendrick Motorsports has ¾ drivers in the Chase as well and are just behind Gibbs with average finish and Team Penske, both drivers in the Chase, are right there with Gibbs and HMS.
At Dover, Roush has the best group of drivers but the Gibbs stable holds the most wins. Will Roush improve their numbers in the Chase and their overall stats this year? Or will Hendrick and Gibbs steal the show again?
Most wins and best average finish in 2014 still sits with Chevrolet and they don’t seem to give up that lead any time soon, but at Dover, it is all about the Fords having the best average finish and sharing the most wins (with Chevrolet). Do not let this trick you into thinking Toyota is just out there running laps; with the Gibbs drivers, they are right there as well!
FedEx 400 at Dover Motor Speedway: Key Statistics
Race Speed (mph):
95% Confidence Interval: (100.069, 136.986)
The average race speed has been getting faster each year, in terms of linear trending with the past 4 years being above average and above 120 mph.
Margin of Victory (seconds):
95% Confidence Interval: (-1.914, 8.358)
Boy has the margin of victory been all over the place in recent years! The numbers tell us that this finish is almost as unpredictable as Talladega and for such different tracks, that is something else. Trending wise, we see a decrease over the past 10 years, less than the average in fact.
95% Confidence Interval: (8.369, 28.431)
There is an up/down pattern each year of the number of lead changes but trending has increased, which we know means more battles up front for the lead and that is exciting! The trending is above the average but below the maximum so we can expect battles up front during this race.
95% Confidence Interval: (3.378, 11.422)
Cautions have been fewer the past 4 years than the previous 6, but have also been creeping upwards year over year. What does this mean for the number of cautions? It means that the average number of cautions is what you can expect to see!
95% Confidence Interval: (0.198, 78.402)
By now, you all know that caution laps are correlated to the number of cautions. Therefore, with an overall linear decline in cautions, we will see a decline in caution laps. In this case, the number of laps is below the average.
95% Confidence Interval: (-13.457, 75.257)
2013 was when we saw the longest green flag run at the start of the race and prior to that, the average first caution lap was around lap 25. We can take 2013 as an outlier of the data, but either way you look at it, the start of the race has been run slightly more each year before a caution comes out. The average, around lap 31, is a good place to look out for a caution.
95% Confidence Interval: (242.236, 433.764)
Races at Dover tend to set up short runs to the checkered flag, especially when trending is telling us this as well. The past 3 years have set up a run of 40 laps or less and as trending is increasing, more towards 50 to go vs. the average of 62 to go, look for around the 50 to go mark this time around.
Drivers On The Lead Lap:
95% Confidence Interval: (2.934, 25.466)
More and more drivers have been fighting to stay on the lead lap at the conclusion of the race over the years and we see that through the positive (upward) trending in the data. The trending is slightly above the average and with every point valuable and winning even more so, I would expect the trend to hold true.