2020 Frontrowmotorsports

2020 season preview: Front Row Motorsports

Editor’s note: Today’s Front Row Motorsports preview continues NASCAR.com’s countdown of team previews for the NASCAR Cup Series season, ranked in order of best finish in last year’s owner standings.

MORE: Changes to know for the 2020 season

FRONT ROW MOTORSPORTS
Manufacturer:
Ford
Engine: Roush Yates
Drivers: Michael McDowell, John Hunter Nemechek
Crew chiefs: Drew Blickensderfer (McDowell), Seth Barbour (Nemechek)

What’s new: Nemechek will make his full-time Cup Series debut at the Daytona 500 in February, driving the No. 38 Ford Mustang. The organization is pivoting back to a two-car effort in 2020.

Team strength: Fielding just two full-time cars in the Cup Series – minus one from the past two seasons – Front Row will be able to shift more focus and assets toward veteran McDowell and young Nemechek. The strategic combination of experience and youthful energy should provide a refreshing team outlook and new excitement for 2020.

The Action Network Best Bet: McDowell is always a driver I target at superspeedways. He had two top-five finishes last season – the Daytona 500 at Daytona and the 1000Bulbs.com 500 at Talladega – so I’m looking to take him in top-10 finish prop bets whenever the Cup Series visits those racetracks. – PJ Walsh

Racing Insights Number to Know: Six. Six of the organization’s eight top-five finishes have come at superspeedways, including a pair in 2019. – Racing Insights

MICHAEL MCDOWELL: No. 34 Ford

2019 Stats: Two top fives, 10 top 20s, 18 laps led; 24.2 average finish
2020 Championship Odds: 5,000-1
Fantasy Live picks: Daytona, Watkins Glen, Charlotte Roval
Outlook: McDowell may be a consistent threat to win at superspeedways after posting the highest finish of his career at Talladega and the second-highest at Daytona in 2019. He’s also a sneaky driver at road courses. Three of his four top 10 starting positions came in the second half of last year, so look for him to bring more consistent qualifying speed throughout the 2020 season.

JOHN HUNTER NEMECHEK: No. 38 Ford

2019 Stats (Xfinity/Cup): Six top fives, 19 top 10s and a 12.5 average finish in 33 NXS starts/23.7 average finish in three NCS starts
2020 Championship Odds: 5,000-1
Fantasy Live picks: Talladega, Daytona, Michigan
Outlook: Alongside a star-studded rookie class, Nemechek aims to be right in the mix for Sunoco Rookie of the Year this season. The 22-year-old got his feet wet filling in for Matt Tifft at the close of the 2019 season and now takes over the seat that David Ragan occupied for the past three seasons.


NASCAR.com 2020 team previews schedule

Jan. 20: Teams outside the top 30
Jan. 21: Go Fas Racing
Jan. 22: Front Row Motorsports
Jan. 23: Richard Petty Motorsports
Jan. 24: Germain Racing
Jan. 27: Leavine Family Racing
Jan. 28: Richard Childress Racing
Jan. 29: JTG Daugherty Racing
Jan. 30: Wood Brothers Racing
Jan. 31: Roush Fenway Racing
Feb. 3: Hendrick Motorsports
Feb. 4: Chip Ganassi Racing
Feb. 5: Team Penske
Feb. 6: Stewart-Haas Racing
Feb. 7: Joe Gibbs Racing