Five Sprint Cup drivers to watch at New Hampshire

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Keep an eye on these drivers during Sunday’s New Hampshire 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, to be televised on NBCSN.

Brad Keselowski

After winning at Kentucky, Keselowski has repeatedly stated how much he’s been looking forward to this weekend at New Hampshire. He has good reason. A previous winner there in both Sprint Cup and Xfinity, Keselowski has posted seven top-10 finishes and an average finish of 5.5 over his last nine Cup starts at New Hampshire.

Denny Hamlin

Flat tracks such as New Hampshire have traditionally been a strength for Hamlin. He has a pair of Cup wins there and his 10.2 average finish is best among active Cup drivers. It also bears noting that he was part of the Goodyear tire test at New Hampshire earlier this year.

Carl Edwards

Edwards, last week’s runner-up at Kentucky, was one of four drivers who posted top-10 finishes in both New Hampshire races last season (seventh and fifth). With four top-10 finishes in the last five races, Edwards may be due to earn his first lobster this weekend.

Jimmie Johnson

Johnson and the No. 48 team have been on an extended rough stretch with one top-five finish in the last nine races (22.0 average finish, 13 laps led, three DNFs). But over the last eight races at New Hampshire, Johnson has posted six top-10 finishes. The problem: Those two finishes outside the top 10 have come in the last two July races (2014 – 42nd/DNF; 2015 – 22nd).

Alex Bowman

With Dale Earnhardt Jr. out of action, 23-year-old Bowman gets the call to drive in his place at New Hampshire. After two non-descript Sprint Cup seasons, Bowman has done well this year in a limited Xfinity Series effort with Earnhardt’s JR Motorsports team. In four starts driving the No. 88 Xfinity car, Bowman’s posted four top-10 finishes with an average finish of 6.2.