Which 2021 Championship 4 driver will win first in 2022?

Ruling champ Kyle Larson, Martin Truex Jr., Chase Elliott and Denny Hamlin all head into the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season enthusiastic to bring the momentum they ended 2021 with.

While a brand-new season is constantly accompanied by high anticipation and a huge selection of unknowns, it would be not a surprise if those 4 motorists come out of evictions swinging, starting with the very first points-paying race — the Daytona 500.

After a great warm-up with the Busch Light Clash at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum to kick things off, which Champion 4 motorist from last season is more than likely to get into Success Lane initially in ’22? NASCAR.com’s Sean Montgomery and Chase Wilhelm argument.

RELATED: Complete 2022 schedule

MONTGOMERY: Kyle Larson and the No. 5 team will get the very first win of the lot at Automobile Club Speedway in Race 2.

You would be hard-pressed to wager versus three-time Daytona 500 champ Denny Hamlin at the seaside superspeedway in the opener, however this season will prefer the underdogs. With just the Champion 4 motorists in argument factor to consider, chances are the season-opening win will originate from somebody else.

The premier series’ go back to the West Coast track, for the very first time considering that March 1, 2020, leaves a chance for another victorious go back to California (Fontana) for the Elk Grove native. In 7 starts there, Larson has one win (2017) and a set of runner-up surfaces. Though that stint was with Chip Ganassi Racing, he has actually certainly been the motorist to beat at the intermediates considering that changing camps.

Larson’s first win last season came at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in Race 4. If we have to wait that long this year, it would be a surprise.

WILHELM: While it’s safe to say Kyle Larson is going to win multiple races once again in 2022, I have my eye on a different driver in the Hendrick Motorsports stable.

After a runner-up finish in the Daytona 500 last year, Chase Elliott has actually all the potential to earn his very first triumph in The Terrific American Race. The 2020 title winner is really on a run of 3 straight surfaces of 8th or much better at Daytona International Speedway, that includes surfaces of 2nd and 8th, respectively, in the last 2 regular-season endings on the 2.5-mile Florida high banks.

While all motorists will be up versus a knowing curve of the brand-new cars and truck, particularly on superspeedways, Elliott is a fast research study and has actually constantly had strong preparing expertise. Oh, and I’m likewise aware I’m wagering versus three-time Daytona 500 champ Denny Hamlin while doing so. However, it might be time for engine No. 9 to get into the win column at Daytona.

Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.