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Advance to Victory Lane: Can Hendrick Motorsports make it three in a row?

Advance to Victory Lane: Can Hendrick Motorsports make it three in a row?

The combination of the Next Gen car and a repaved/reconfigured track helped produce two of the wildest races in Atlanta Motor Speedway history last year. Lead changes (46 in the spring race) and caution flags (13 in the summer race) were plentiful as the track played more like Talladega Superspeedway than a typical 1.5-miler.

Hendrick Motorsports swept the races last year with William Byron in the spring and Chase Elliott in the summer, but if Atlanta continues to live up to its superspeedway billing, then it’s still possible a surprise winner could emerge. Remember, Spire Motorsports’ Corey LaJoie was leading last summer’s race with two laps to go before he wrecked on the final restart while running second.

FANTASY LIVE: Set your roster

To shed some light on what could go down on Sunday in the Ambetter Health 400 (3 p.m. ET, FOX, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), Racing Insights is here with its advanced statistical formula for picking the winner and full race results. Racing Insights uses data on the current track, current track type, recent performance, teams and pit crews to make its projections.

RYAN BLANEY: Has led laps in five of the last six Atlanta races (85 laps led in that span).

ROSS CHASTAIN: Finished second in both Atlanta races in 2022, leading 74 laps.

ERIK JONES: Finished top 10 in three of the last five races on drafting tracks.

CHRISTOPHER BELL: Has finished sixth or better in three of four races this year, but was 23rd and 19th at Atlanta last year.

TYLER REDDICK: A third-place run at Phoenix was his best of the season, but he did not finish either Atlanta race in 2022.

Projections as of Wednesday, March 15:

RACING INSIGHTS’ PROJECTIONS FOR THE AMBETTER HEALTH 400

Finish

Car No.

Driver

1

12

Ryan Blaney

2

4

Kevin Harvick

3

1

Ross Chastain

4

11

Denny Hamlin

5

24

William Byron

6

5

Kyle Larson

7

19

Martin Truex Jr.

8

22

Joey Logano

9

8

Kyle Busch

10

14

Chase Briscoe

11

20

Christopher Bell

12

43

Erik Jones

13

99

Daniel Suárez

14

48

Alex Bowman

15

6

Brad Keselowski

16

23

Bubba Wallace

17

2

Austin Cindric

18

10

Aric Almirola

19

17

Chris Buescher

20

3

Austin Dillon

21

7

Corey LaJoie

22

41

Ryan Preece

23

31

Justin Haley

24

45

Tyler Reddick

25

34

Michael McDowell

26

47

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

27

16

AJ Allmendinger

28

21

Harrison Burton

29

38

Todd Gilliland

30

42

Noah Gragson

31

77

Ty Dillon

32

54

Ty Gibbs

33

9

Josh Berry

34

51

Cody Ware

35

15

J.J. Yeley

36

78

BJ McLeod