During the season, many tracks listed get the chance to host two races on the year. Some happen right at the beginning of the year then at the very end, as in Phoenix, while others are a spring and fall mix, as in Charlotte.
But some tracks don't get as much rest in between race weekends to prepare for their next big race.
Case in point, NASCAR is heading to a track that they just saw in mid-June. It was then in Pocono that we saw Dale Earnhardt Jr. make the late pass to get his first win at the track, and second on the season. But, it is a much different speedway now compared to then. The heat in Pennsylvania over the summer has made the track stickier, and harder to drive.
This track has been compared to Indianapolis, meaning anyone that ran well a week ago will once again have a strong showing. For the writers, that is something they are hopeful for. Take a look at their picks for the GoBowling.com 400:
Misan Akuya: Tony Stewart
Sticking with Smoke, even after last week.
Rob Blount: Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Sure he has never been very good at Pocono but that didn’t stop him from winning here in June. I’m not expecting him to win again, but I am expecting another strong performance out of that team.
James Broomhead: Denny Hamlin
Billy Fellin: Brad Keselowski
Despite Hendrick's dominance at the track recently, Kez almost won this race in the spring. He'll win this one.
Michael Hirshbein: Kyle Busch
Kara Martin: Brad Keselowski
Ryan O'Hara: Kyle Larson
This is the day it happens.
Dustin Parks: Jeff Gordon
Momentum is on this team's side. Indy and Pocono, both 2.5 mile tracks. Just feel this team is only beginning to hit their stride. It's going to get better as the Chase approaches. Look out for this group.
Patti Rodisch: Jeff Gordon
I am going to ride the hot hand and that was either Gordon or Kyle Busch. Busch has finished runner up three of the last four races. He is leading the Joe Gibbs charge but Gordon has two wins now and we are going to Pocono which everyone compares to Indianapolis. Gordon had the fastest car both out front and in traffic at IMS. At Pocono that is a game changer.
Gordon has six wins all time at Pocono and will add to his incredible numbers on Sunday and win for the seventh time.
Aaron Rosser: Brad Keselowski
Sal Sigala Jr: Brad Keselowski
Rob Tiongson: Jeff Gordon
Last Sunday, Jeff Gordon became the first five-time winner at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in a stock car. This Sunday, he and his No. 24 Axalta/Maaco Chevy team will add to their win total at Pocono and score a seventh win at "The Tricky Triangle."
Standings after Indianapolis:
Kara Martin (721) Jimmie Johnson finished 14th - 3
Ryan O'Hara (708) Jeff Gordon WON - 5
Sal Sigala Jr. (691) Jimmie Johnson finished 14th - 5
Patti Rodisch (695) Jeff Gordon WON - 3
Rob Tiongson (675) Jeff Gordon WON - 3
Billy Fellin (638) Jimmie Johnson finished 14th - 1
Dustin Parks (632) Tony Stewart finished 17th - 2
Michael Hirshbein (627) Kyle Busch finished 2nd - 1
Aaron Rosser (600) Brad Keselowski finished 12th - 1
Rob Blount (592) Jimmie Johnson finished 14th - 1
Misan Akuya (592) Tony Stewart finished 17th - 1
James Broomhead (535) Jimmie Johnson finished 14th - 2
Final Remarks: It's always known a track changes from the first time it's visited compared to the second, but no track sees less turnaround than Pocono. It is still an innovator in the industry, with it's solar power and unique configuration, but it has always remained the "Tricky Triangle."</p>
Someone will figure out how to beat all the tricks on Sunday, and ESPN will have it until the finish.
Summary of Picks:
Dale Earnhardt. Jr-1