Fantasy Racing Weekend Wrap-Up

Updated: February 19, 2007, 1:16 PM ET
By Scott Engel | ESPN.com
Your fantasy standings certainly don't look quite the way you expected them to after the first race of the season. Many big names were done in by wrecks at the Daytona 500, proving that no matter how well you plan ahead, mishaps can alter the outlook of any fantasy squad at any time. The driver with the best car was one of the first to wreck, and he was considered to be the favorite to win the Great American Race for the first time.

Many fantasy owners, especially those in challenge-style games, built their hopes around Tony Stewart, who entered Daytona with two wins in his past three races at the site. And it looked like Stewart was destined for victory through 152 laps, as he had what appeared to be the best car on the track, and the determination to become the first driver to win the Bud Shootout, the Gatorade Duels and the Daytona 500. Stewart wrecked when Kurt Busch tried to pass him, bringing the day-long battle between the two drivers to an early climax and disappointing ending from a fantasy perspective.

Despite Stewart's finish on Sunday, the race he ran should entice you to center your squad around him again. Stewart clearly could have won the race if not for the wreck, and now he'll be primed to erase a forgettable start to the season and be a major force at California next Sunday. Stewart has never won at California but he should be ready to change that after the chance to win the 500 slipped away. Busch made a case to regain fantasy players' confidence with a strong opening performance for 150-plus laps, leading 95 of them.

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Scott Engel | email

ESPN Fantasy Games
Scott Engel covers fantasy sports for ESPN.com.

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