NASCAR Daily Fantasy Helper: Big Data 500
A wild race at Kansas Speedway, including a controversial late restart, saw Denny Hamlin take his fifth win of 2019. Brad Keselowski faded on a late restart to 19th, which made him a surprise cut down entering the Round of 8. That round starts this weekend at Martinsville Speedway. The smallest race track on the circuit always has plenty of beating and banging. Remember, Joey Logano bounced Martin Truex Jr. out of the way last year, which was the only reason Logano had the ability to be crowned champion three races later.
Martinsville for daily fantasy means laps -- and lots of them. With 500 laps on the docket, completion and laps led points are at an absolute premium. Brad Keselowski led 447 of 500 laps in the spring, totally dominating the race. The aero package could lead to that same scenario again, and it will therefore be a must to find the dominant car in this race as well.
Here at numberFire, we've always got you covered for everything NASCAR DFS. Our track preview gives you more information about the history of the track, our driver preview helps bring you up to speed on recent driver history, and our Heat Check Podcast with Jim Sannes gives you insight to how he is approaching this weekend's slate.
Kyle Busch ($15,000): Many will start with pole-sitter Denny Hamlin ($14,000), as he sits on the pole with solid practice times. While you will want exposure to Hamlin, it is important to remember the pole-sitter did not dominate the spring race. Therefore, it may be best to divest beyond him and start with Kyle Busch. Because of Hamlin, Busch should see lower-than-normal ownership at a track he dominates. He has a sparkling 2.4 average finish in his last five here, never finishing outside the top five. He also did not lead in the spring race for the first time in six races, so regression says Busch should find the front from his starting spot of 13th at some point on Sunday.
Brad Keselowski ($13,500): I would be remiss not to mention Keselowski, as he did lead 447 laps in a totally dominant win. Keselowski also found the top of the scoring pylon by turning the fastest lap in final practice. In a surprise, he did not post a solid qualifying time, but in such a small two-lap sample, "The Deuce" should still factor in Sunday. His spring win was no fluke, as he posted four top-fives here before that one to make it five-for-five in the last five at "The Paper Clip." Keselowski will start 15th, which is plenty safe enough to avoid lap down issues.
Clint Bowyer ($10,500): Bowyer is a mid-priced driver turning in high-priced results this weekend. He posted the best 10-lap average in both practice sessions, which would make a driver a favorite for the win on any given weekend. It's not like this is unfamiliar territory for Bowyer, either, as it was just last spring where he led 215 laps on his way to winning a grandfather clock. Bowyer is eliminated from the playoffs, but a contract renewal this week should surely give him pep in his step. He'll look to contend for the win from seventh.
Aric Almirola ($7,700): Martinsville can turn daily fantasy strategy on its head. Because the track is so short, the last thing you want is to go a lap down early, as this can force a driver to be climbing uphill all day. Normally, a driver starting third with little chance to lead would be a terrible investment, but Almirola is a great value at $7,700. He was in the top 10 in all three stages in April, and he has posted great times this weekend, checking in inside the top three on the 10-lap charts in both practice sessions. Like his teammate Bowyer, Almirola will start close to the front with a great machine.
Matt DiBenedetto ($7,000): The last four tracks less than 1.25 miles have been very kind to Matt DiBenedetto, as he continues to take advantage of a technical alliance with the best manufacture in the sport currently. On those type of tracks, his average finish is 7.75, and he has actually led 93 laps in those races. Those stats would normally belong to a driver with a much more expensive salary than this. DiBenedetto starts 12th, which should keep him safely on the lead lap through Stage 1 and set him up for successful day.
Daniel Hemric ($4,000): Like Almirola, I would normally turn elsewhere for a value play than someone starting 18th, but Hemric has posted great lap times as he continues to try to prove himself for a new ride. He was 15th and 4th in the practice sessions Saturday and is starting 18th, which is just high enough in the field to avoid lap struggles while still leaving room for pass differential upside. Look for a strong Hemric run on Sunday. However, if you need an additional $500 in salary, pivot to David Ragan ($3,500) in a very similar situation with a slightly less sporty machine.
Austin Swaim is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Austin Swaim also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username ASwaim3. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.