Brad Keselowski is the Favorite to Win the 2019 Daytona 500 According to IMSA Drivers
Thursday, February 14, 2019

It’s Valentine’s Day and who do IMSA drivers love to win this Sunday’s Daytona 500? Brad Keselowski.

Keselowski, who drives the No. 2 Ford for Team Penske and is looking for his first Daytona 500 victory, was mentioned most frequently as a pick to win the 2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season opener in an informal poll of IMSA drivers.

Kevin Harvick, who drives the No. 4 Ford for Stewart-Haas Racing, was the second-most popular choice to take “The Great American Race,” with a four-way tie for third between No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet driver Chase Elliott, No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota driver Martin Truex Jr., No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet driver Jimmie Johnson and No. 12 Team Penske Ford driver Ryan Blaney.

Find out who will win the 61st Daytona 500 this Sunday, Feb. 17. Tickets are selling fast but still are available at The race will be televised live on FOX at 2:30 p.m. ET.

Without further ado, here are IMSA drivers’ Daytona 500 picks, and when available, the rationale behind their choice:

AJ Allmendinger (No. 86 Meyer Shank Racing Acura NSX GT3): “My pick is Ryan Blaney. He is really good on the superspeedway tracks. His teammates both have a championship and now it’s his time to step up. He has the talent to do it and it starts at Daytona.”

Townsend Bell (No. 12 Aim Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F GT3): “Keselowski.”

Nick Boulle (No. 73 Park Place Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R): “Jimmie Johnson. Guy ran a 1.5-hour half marathon this past weekend before qualifying and racing kicked off. Pretty cool.”

Dane Cameron (No. 6 Acura Team Penske Acura ARX-05 DPi): “This year, my pick to win the Daytona 500 is going to be Brad Keselowski. He’s obviously still missing that and I know he wants to win it real bad. He’s been really close a couple of times and he’s obviously super strong at Talladega. He’s a helluva plate racer, so he’s going to be my pick this year. So… Brad, don’t let me down bud!”

Jack Hawksworth (No. 14 AIM Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F GT3): “Jimmie Johnson. Because he won last week.”
Jackie Heinricher (No. 57 Heinricher Racing with Meyer Shank Racing Acura NSX GT3): “My pick for who will win the Daytona 500 is rookie Caterpillar driver Daniel Hemric driving the No. 8.”
Richard Heistand (No. 14 AIM Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F GT3): “I’m new to NASCAR, but Austin Cindric told me to say that I’m pulling for Corey Lajoie because he’s got his face on his car.”
Trent Hindman (No. 86 Meyer Shank Racing Acura NSX GT3): “Kevin Harvick because Stewart-Haas always has great cars and I also like Busch beer. Martin Truex Jr. is a Jersey guy and I’m curious to see what he can do now with Joe Gibbs Racing. And Jimmie Johnson, the G.O.A.T. and I’d like to see Hendrick get back to being championship contenders.”
Ben Keating (No. 33 Mercedes-AMG Team Riley Motorsports Mercedes-AMG GT3): “My pick for who is going to win the Daytona 500 is Joey Logano, because a Ford’s going to win. I’ve also just newly announced that I’m going to be driving a Ford GT in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. I’m extremely excited about that. I’ve got a great history with Ford. I’ve got confidence in those Penske Fords to find their way to the front, because it’s just what they do. They always seem to be able to make it up there. They didn’t win the championship by accident and they’re going to do it again.”
Andy Lally (No. 44 Magnus Racing Lamborghini Huracán GT3): “It’s hard to narrow down the picks for the 2019 Daytona 500, because we’ve got a lot of close racing, but I think I’m going to narrow it down to two young guys and two veterans. Chase Elliott and Ryan Blaney are my favorites for the young guys, and then Kevin Harvick, and who I think is hands down, the best restrictor-plate racer of all time and one of the smartest guys to drive a race car, Brad Keselowski and the 2 crew are going to take the 2019 Daytona 500.”
Katherine Legge (No. 57 Heinricher Racing with Meyer Shank Racing Acura NSX GT3): “Martin Truex, because he has really come into his own lately.”
Patrick Lindsey (No. 73 Park Place Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R): “My boy, Kevin Harvick. Bakersfield represent, every year!”
Patrick Long (No. 73 Park Place Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R): “Parker Kligerman. He raced his way into the 500 with a small team. I always root for (the talented) underdog. He’s racing for Team USA. And he’s part of the IMSA broadcast team.”
Justin Marks (No. 86 Meyer Shank Racing Acura NSX GT3): “Brad Keselowski. He’s the best superspeedway racer yet to win the 500 and Ford/Penske has been strong at Daytona.”
Spencer Pumpelly (No. 44 Magnus Racing Lamborghini Huracán GT3): “Daytona 500 picks for me: I’ve got a sentimental favorite in Brendan Gaughan. He and I won the 2011 Daytona 24 together, but of course, this family, thanks to my son, Ryder, especially, is a Chase Elliott family, so we’re going to be rooting for the 62 and the No. 9.”
Ricky Taylor (No. 7 Acura Team Penske Acura ARX-05 DPi): “My Daytona 500 pick is going to be Paul Menard. I think he’s going to get some revenge and finish the job that he started at the Clash. I think he’s got some unfinished business there. I’m definitely rooting for all the Team Penske cars, but I think Paul’s going to get it this weekend.”

Laurens Vanthoor (No. 912 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR): “My prediction for the Daytona 500, I will pick Kyle Busch. He hasn’t won that big race yet, and he’s won pretty much every other race, so that would be my pick for this year.”