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PEAK Series Power Rankings: Talladega Looms

With a six-figure purse on the line this season, the eNASCAR PEAK Antifreeze iRacing Series continues its 2019 campaign at the virtual Talladega Superspeedway for the sixth race of the season Tuesday, April 23 (9 p.m. ET, eNASCAR.com). The series hasn’t visited NASCAR’s biggest and fastest track since 2013 when Joshua and Chad Laughton swept the top two spots.

 

Blake Reynolds

Rank: 12 (NR)

Blake Reynolds, perhaps known most for his insane save at Las Vegas earlier this year, scored his career-best finish at Richmond, placing second behind Ryan Luza. He’s improved his finish across all five races in 2019, quietly placing himself into the playoff picture.

 

Jake Nichols

Rank: 11 (+1)

Though still top 10-less, Joe Gibbs Racing’s No. 20 car has climbed to seventh in points. If Nichols can continue to stay out of trouble — especially at Talladega — a quiet run to the playoffs isn’t out of the question.

 

Nick Ottinger

Rank: 10 (-1)

While Ottinger missed the Richmond race, you can typically find him near the front of the pack at superspeedways. He and JTG Daugherty Racing teammate Christian Challiner scored a pair of top-five finishes at the Daytona season opener in February.

 

Ray Alfalla

Rank: 9 (-6)

Alfalla’s dismal season continued at Richmond, where the Wood Brothers Racing Ford finished 20th after sustaining front-end damage. After scoring a record fourth championship in 2018, it’s possible he doesn’t compete in the 2019 playoffs. He’ll need his luck to turn around in a hurry.

 

Bobby Zalenski

Rank: 8 (-2)

Luck has not been on Zalenski’s side as of late, finding himself caught up in incidents left and right while running well. For Joe Gibbs Racing, he’s hoping all the gremlins are gone in time for ‘Dega.

 

Logan Clampitt

Rank: 7 (+3)

The Burton Kligerman eSports driver had the race he needed at Richmond, scoring a top five. It’s still a tall order to make the playoffs after missing a race, but things are trending in the right direction for the No. 77.

 

Jimmy Mullis

Rank: 6 (+1)

The Daytona runner-up didn’t quite have the effort he would have liked at his team’s home track, but he’s proven he can contend on superspeedways. We’ll see if Mullis can keep the magic going despite a new superspeedway rules package at Talladega.

 

Michael Conti

Rank: 5 (+3)

The bad news: Conti’s top-10 streak, dating back to September, ended with a 12th-place finish at Richmond. The good news: He’s third in points heading to Talladega — a good omen driving for JR Motorsports.

 

Zack Novak

Rank: 4 (+1)

The Daytona winner for Roush Fenway Racing has had two disappointing races in a row after a stout start to 2019, but with Talladega next on the schedule, it’s a fine time for a rebound.

 

Matt Bussa

Rank: 3 (+1)

Williams eSports driver Matt Bussa is doing what he does best: “top 10-ing them to death,” as they say, with a 9.8 average finish in 2019.

 

Keegan Leahy

Rank: 2 (–)

While he’s still looking for his first victory of 2019, the Canadian managed to continue his top-five streak at Richmond after leading 60 laps.

 

Ryan Luza

Rank: 1 (–)

Coming off two straight wins, it’s hard to deny 2019 is looking like a very Luza-like season — but Talladega’s an awfully unpredictable place.