Is your IZOD IndyCar Series Fantasy Racing team on the ropes? Not sure who should get that last spot on your starting grid this week? Wondering about the prospects of a certain driver? Take it easy, because we have an installment of Fantasy Racing Mailbag, taking all your questions for fantasy racing here at INDYCAR Nation.
Wade Cunningham was great in Lights. Do I look to start him for any of his races this year?
-James, Indianapolis, IN
Great question. Wade Cunningham’s debut for Sam Schmidt’s Motorsports is definitely highly anticipated this year, and he’s got crazy potential. But my recommendation on most rookies is to hold off and see how they do their first couple of times out. In Wade’s case, he has limited experience at Texas and none at Las Vegas, so that might mean the Kentucky race would be your best bet. In four Firestone Indy Lights races there, he never finished worse than third, and won it in 2009. You’ll have to balance that with the fact your oval specialists will be out in force for that race.
What about Simona de Silvestro’s chances the rest of the year? Do I put her in any races?
-Greg in Olympia
Not on the ovals, no. We’re all super-impressed with the Swiss Missile’s guts and grit, but given the destruction to her primary car and middling results on ovals thus far, there are some safer picks out there for those weekends. The good news is she’s still a solid fill-in for the road/street courses. Pay particular attention to races such as Toronto, Mid-Ohio, and Sonoma, where she had some success as a rookie.
Which Mike Conway should I believe: the one who won Long Beach or the one who couldn’t qualify at Indy?
-Ron, Seymour, IN
Conway’s problems at Indy were exacerbated by his team struggling to find speed all month long. I suspect had he made the race, things might have been quite different once the green flag actually waved. Conway’s definitely a talent, but at this point in the season, I’m saving him for a few of the street and road courses, where he should shine once again.
Can Ed Carpenter and Sarah Fisher Racing win this year, honestly?
-Lucas, Racine, WI
Honestly, can they? Yes, but it won’t be easy. We saw they qualified well at Indy, but putting together an entire race with no flaws is difficult for any team. If you’re looking for a quality start for Ed and Sarah, Kentucky’s your race. Ed is lights-out here, and knows how to run well. Even if he can’t win it, there’s still a great chance of a great finish for the team. Something else I’ll throw out there: Carp has three Top 10s at Texas, and could be an intriguing pick there as well.
One more for you: What do I make of Alex Lloyd’s chances on the ovals this year?
-Greg in Olympia
The 2010 IZOD IndyCar Series Rookie of the Year is a welcome sight on the track, but you need to weigh that against Dale Coyne Racing’s mid-pack record overall. Yes, he finished P4 at Indy in 2010, but outside of that, his best finish of the year was P8 at Texas. Alex will get the very most he can out of his ride, but unless you want to grab him as a sleeper for the Firestone Twin 275s, you’re probably best off using him sparingly for now. I would love for him to prove me wrong, though.
INDYCAR Fantasy Racing Questions, Crises, Concerns? Email Zachary Houghton at firstname.lastname@example.org, on contact him on Twitter @indycaradvocate. Good luck, and have fun!