Daily Fantasy NASCAR: Current Form, Track History, and Betting Odds for the Pocono Organics 325
Let's play two, NASCAR.
For the first time in the history of the Cup Series, the circuit will be running races at the same track on back-to-back days. The starting order for Saturday's Pocono Organics 325 is now set, and that's the one we'll be focusing on today.
As discussed in this week's track preview and our Heat Check Fantasy Podcast, the name of the game in Pocono is place-differential. The race is short, meaning the highest-upside drivers will be those starting further back. If you want to fill out good lineups for DFS, you should start by hunting for drivers in position to finish better than where they're starting.
As a result, the data sheet for Saturday is sorted by where each driver is starting. Also listed are their FanDuel salaries and their win odds via FanDuel Sportsbook. The win odds are posted in fractional form, so Denny Hamlin ($13,000) being listed at 6.5 means he is +650 to win the race.
We can lean on the betting odds to find drivers who can rack up place-differential points, but the better indicator will be the current form and track history markings. Not every driver who can shine for DFS is going to have race-winning upside, but their performance in relevant races can show they're primed to be competitive.
For current form, listed are the four most recent races and then two races from earlier in the year in Charlotte and Fontana. The fifth most recent race was in Bristol, which bears no resemblance to Pocono. Charlotte is at least a track that requires good equipment, as does Pocono. Fontana is the only other race this year at a big, non-drafting track, though even that one has key differences from Pocono. We should take the current form in as a whole rather than trying to draw lessons from one specific race.
As a reminder, all of these numbers are the driver's average running position from those races rather than their finish. A good illustration of why comes from Ryan Blaney ($11,800) in Fontana. Blaney was competing with Alex Bowman ($10,600) for the win all day long but cut a tire late and finished 19th. His third-place average running position is a much better representation of how strong his car was, making that the number we should prefer between the two.
The track history segment includes races here from the past two seasons. It's worth noting that the rookie class has no data there, and several of them grade out well for DFS on Saturday. You can look at past Xfinity Series races at Pocono to get a glimpse at what they've done, but the current form should be a good measuring stick for them, as well.
By looking at the track history, you can see that William Byron ($10,400) and Erik Jones ($10,000) are in elite spots to snag some place-differential. Byron has three top-10s and a top-5 in four career Cup Series races at Pocono, and he won here in the Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series during his age-18 season. Jones has four top-fives in six Cup Series races here and has had a top-eight average running position in three straight. Those are the types of drivers who fit our strategy and deserve to be in our core on Saturday.
|Martin Truex Jr.||$12,500||11||7.5||24||11||8||3||18||9||7||24||11||4|
|Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||$7,700||14||140||10||23||21||14||11||22||16||23||20||24|
|John Hunter Nemechek||$6,500||20||200||18||20||21||25||16||25||--||--||--||--|
With this data, you should be able to see some drivers -- like Byron, Jones, and Christopher Bell ($8,000) -- whose recent runs are better than where they're starting. Those are the drivers you'll want to build around on Saturday. So check out the data, look for drivers in that same mold, and go from there.