Daily Fantasy NASCAR: Current Form, Track History, and Betting Odds for the Toyota 500K
Sunday was fun. Let's do it again, shall we?
The NASCAR Cup Series will do something we haven't seen in a long time on Wednesday: they'll run a second consecutive race at the same track with just a couple of days in between. We'd be wise to heed the signals of what we saw on Sunday.
Normally, when we're looking at track history, we have to dig back several years to get relevant data. For Sunday's Darlington race, our three-race sample at the track was from 2017 through 2019. As mentioned in last week's data piece, the 2017 data included only 23 drivers who were also in Sunday's race and only 10 drivers who were still with the same teams they drove for then.
Now, we get to see every driver with the same team, and our three-race sample goes back to just 2018. That's a massive, massive upgrade to our level of confidence.
We do need to proceed with a bit of caution, though. Some drivers with ponies under the hood on Sunday may not have finished well, which means we shouldn't look at just finishing positions when determining whom we should expect to perform well on Wednesday.
The three main drivers who stick out there are Kyle Busch ($13,000), Jimmie Johnson ($10,000), and William Byron ($9,000). Busch had an issue under green-flag conditions late and finished 26th. Johnson wrecked while leading in the opening stage, and his wreck allowed Byron to win that stage. Byron then proceeded to wreck in the second stage. Both Johnson and Byron were contending for the win but will now start in the back.
From a DFS perspective, that's great for us. As mentioned in the Darlington track preview, because Wednesday's race is so short, we are incentivized to use drivers starting further back due to the place-differential upside they carry. Those three give us obvious avenues for that upside, as do the drivers who finished best on Sunday with the top 20 finishers being inverted for the starting order.
With the incentive to stack the back, the data table below is sorted by where the drivers will start. If you find a driver with numbers you like who is starting in the back, they're probably going to be an elite DFS option.
As a reminder, all race-level data is the average running position the driver posted in that specific race (for an explanation on why, check out last week's data piece). When you see that Kevin Harvick ($13,200) has a "2" in his column for the 2020 Darlington race, it means his average running position on Sunday was second.
All betting odds referenced are as of Monday morning at FanDuel Sportsbook. Ross Chastain ($6,400) and Gray Gaulding ($4,500) are on the entry list for the race and are thus in the FanDuel player pool, but they did not race on Sunday, so they will be listed at the bottom. Chastain has said he will not be in the field despite being on the entry list.
|Current Form||Track History|
|Driver||FD Price||Win Odds||Start||Phoenix||Fontana||Vegas||Daytona||Homestead||Texas||2020||2019||2018|
|John Hunter Nemechek||$5,000||+14000||12||20||25||20||23||27||23||18||--||--|
|Martin Truex Jr.||$11,500||+850||15||11||9||8||22||3||13||14||16||10|
|Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||$6,400||+18000||40||22||22||15||11||22||35||40||28||19|
Ideally, this should make it easier to pinpoint the building blocks for Wednesday's race. Despite starting in the back, Johnson, Byron, and Busch all have top-end numbers, and you can see where those who finished high on Sunday pop up in the middle of the pack, as well. Find drivers who are likely to finish better than they're starting, lock them in, and build things out from there.