It’s been a minute since it was easy to come up with five to 10 potential winners of the Daytona 200. It’s been a real minute since it was difficult to narrow it down to 15 riders with a shot at winning the legendary 200 at Daytona International Speedway.

But here we are.

Tasked with the job of doing just that, we’ve done our best to narrow it down to just 15, and we’ll be sharing that list of racers three at a time, in numerical order, over the course of this week. Since, at the time of this writing, there were 67 riders entered in the 82nd running of the 200, our odds of getting it right are… drumroll, please. One in 67.

So, without further ado, let’s give ‘er a rip. Remember this is in numerical order, not in the order from favorite to least favorite. Also, don’t shoot the messenger.

#15 – PJ Jacobsen – Rahal Ducati Moto

New team. New number. Same speedy PJ Jacobsen. And another seasoned veteran searching for his first Daytona 200 victory.

Armed with a Rahal Ducati Moto Panigale V2, Jacobsen must be rated as a favorite to score that first 200 win. After all, he finished fifth last year – covered by the same cocktail napkin as the other four in the top five and just 439 of a second from victory. Jacobsen also set the second-fastest lap time in the 200 on the Celtic/Tytlers Cycle/TSE Racing Yamaha, a 1:49.653 that was bettered only by Brandon Paasch. He also qualified in the middle of the front row with a best lap of 1:49.005.

Jacobsen’s new Rahal Ducati Moto crew will get their first taste of the 200 as a team, but there’s plenty of experience on the squad to make sure things run smoothly on pit lane.

#19 – Kayla Yaakov – Rahal Ducati Moto

Some might think us silly for thinking Kayla Yaakov has a chance of winning the Daytona 200 on her first attempt, but stranger things have happened at the Speedway. Even though she lacks experience in the big race, she also has a knack for rising to the occasion. And she’s fast and she’s not easily intimidated.

Also, remember sometimes the winner of the Daytona 200 is the one who keeps churning out consistent laps, has clean pit stops and stays out of trouble. Yaakov is capable of all that. Plus, no one expects her to win over a field of what is inarguably the strongest in several years.

#37 – Stefano Mesa – Boulder Motor Sports Ducati

It doesn’t really matter that Stefano Mesa hasn’t spent much time on a Ducati Panigale V2. He’s the Swiss Army knife of the paddock. He adapts to any motorcycle he throws his leg over. And goes fast.

Mesa didn’t race in the Daytona 200 last year, but he did further his reputation as a man who can ride anything by jumping on the MP13 Racing Yamaha YZF-R7 (as a replacement rider for the injured Kayla Yaakov) and winning the second of two Twins Cup races at the Speedway.

Oh, and let’s not forget Mr. Ride Anything Fast also raced the Energica Eva Ribelle RS electric bike in the two Super Hooligan National Championship races at Daytona and finished seventh and fifth.

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