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MID-PACK ATTACK: Michigan International Speedway
Built in 1968 at a cost of about $6 million, Michigan International Speedway is a 2-mile asphalt D-shaped oval with 18-degree banking in turns and 12-degree banking in the tri-oval, which is part of the 3,600-foot frontstretch. The 2,242-foot backstretch is banked five degrees. The track was resurfaced in 1977, 1986 and again in 1995.
Since the corners are so long, drivers are in the gas hard all throughout the race. This may contribute to the engine failures seen in past races at MIS. It's not unusual to see cars racing 3-, 4- and even 5-wide on the straightaways. The first NASCAR race was won in 1969 by Cale Yarborough in a Mercury at an average race speed of 139.254 mph.
There are 46 teams attempting to get into the 43-car field this year. Here are some mid-pack sleeper picks for the race at MIS.
|Michigan International Speedway|
|Driver||Races||Wins||Top 5||Top 10||Poles||Times led||Laps led|
|COMMENT:Johnny Benson has an average MIS finish of 16.5 over the last five years, including three top 10s in the August races at Michigan. Although Benson has finished the No. 10 Pontiac in the top 10 only once this season, this could be the best shot at getting his second.|
|COMMENT: Michael Waltrip has a couple of top fives at Michigan in the last two years. Waltrip scored a win and eight top 10s this season and is currently sixth in the Winston Cup standings. He struggled at this track earlier in his career but has improved to an average finish of around 18th for the last 10 MIS races.|
|COMMENT: Coming off a Watkins Glen seventh place finish,
|COMMENT: The No. 41 Dodge driver,