Windows 10 400 at Pocono: Fantasy NASCAR Picks & Analysis
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Now, let’s look at the Field.
Race Entrants w/ Recalibrated DK Salaries
NOTE: Due to DraftKings changing the number to entrants from 5 to 6 but keeping the salary cap at $50,000, the salaries will be lower than in previous contests.
- #1 Jamie McMurray, Lexar Chevrolet for $8,100
- #2 Brad Keselowski, Alliance Truck Parts Ford for $9,400
- #3 Austin Dillon, American Ethanol Chevrolet for $7,500
- #4 Kevin Harvick, Jimmy John’s/Budweiser Chevrolet for $11,700
- #5 Kasey Kahne, Aquafina Chevrolet for $8,700
- #6 Trevor Bayne, AdvoCare Ford Fusion for $6,600
- #7 Alex Bowman, FW1 Wash and Wax Chevrolet for $5,900
- #9 Sam Hornish Jr., Medallion Bank Ford for $6,400
- #10 Danica Patrick, GoDaddy Chevrolet for $6,500
- #11 Denny Hamlin, FedEx Office Toyota for $9,300
- #13 Casey Mears GEICO Chevrolet SS for $6,500
- #14 Tony Stewart, Rush Truck Centers/Mobil 1 for $7,900
- #15 Clint Bowyer, Maxwell House Toyota for $7,700
- #16 Greg Biffle, Rouse Performance Ford Fusion for $7,100
- #17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Ford Ecoboost Ford Fusion for $6,400
- #18 Kyle Busch, M&M Crispy Toyota for $10,800
- #19 Carl Edwards, Stanley Toyota for $8,500
- #20 Matt Kenseth, Dollar General Toyota for $9,000
- #22 Joey Logano, Shell Pennzoil Ford for $9,400
- #23 J.J. Yeley, Dr. Pepper Toyota for $5,800
- #24 Jeff Gordon, AARP Member Advantages Chevrolet for $9,300
- #26 Jeb Burton, Maxim Toyota for TBD for $5,800
- #27 Paul Menard, Sylvania/Menards Chevrolet for $7,400
- #31 Ryan Newman, Caterpillar Chevrolet for $7,600
- #32 Travis Kvapil, SKUTTLE TIGHT Ford for $5,600
- #33 Alex Kennedy, TBA Chevrolet for $5,700
- #34 Brett Moffitt, A&W All American Food Ford for $5,800
- #35 Cole Whitt, MDS Transportation Ford for $5,800
- #38 David Gilliland, Love’s Travel Stops Ford for $6,000
- #40 Landon Cassill, TBA Chevrolet for $6,100
- #41 Kurt Busch, Haas Automation Chevrolet for $10,100
- #42 Kyle Larson, Suave MEN Chevrolet for $8,300
- #43 Aric Almirola, United States Air Force Ford for $6,300
- #46 Michael Annett, Pilot Flying J Chevrolet for $5,900
- #47 A.J. Allendinger, Bush’s Grillin’ Beans Chevrolet for $6,300
- #48 Jimmie Johnson, Kobalt Tools Chevrolet for $10,400
- #51 Justin Allgaier, Fraternal Order of Eagles Chevrolet for $6,200
- #55 David Ragan, Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota for $7,100
- #62 Reed Sorenson, TBA Chevrolet for $5,700
- #78 Martin Truex Jr., Furniture Row Chevrolet for $10,300
- #83 Matt DiBenedetto, Burger King Toyota for $6,000
- #88 Dale Earnhardt Jr., Microsoft Chevrolet for $9,200
- #95 Michael McDowell, Thrivent Financial Ford for TBD
- #98 Timmy Hill, TBA Ford for $5,600
Jul 31, 2015; Long Pond, PA, USA; NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Kyle Busch holds the Coors Light Pole Award banner after winning the pole for the Windows 10 400 at Pocono Raceway. Mandatory Credit: Matthew O
Windows 10 400/Pocono Fantasy Strategy: My race picks will not be released until after the Qualifying session on Saturday, but let’s look at the race in general.
- This race is on a unique 2.5 mile, flat, triangle-shaped track that has a turn over a tunnel that helps make the track extremely bumpy. While it will give drivers fits and threatens to makes them loose it also them more opportunities to pass.
- Strongly consider drivers that have a good history in this race. Also consider drivers with a good history at big tracks with long straightaways as well as flat tracks. Indy is a good comparison track.
- Chevy has dominated this race recently with 8 cars in the Top 10 in the Spring 2014 race and 6 of the Top 8 in the Spring race this year.
- Chevrolet Drivers have won last 6 races here including Truex Jr. in June; Dale Jr. won both the Spring and Summer races in 2014.
- Jeff Gordon (6) has the most Pocono Cup wins all-time. Denny Hamlin is second among active drivers with four wins.
- Pocono has a large pit area so positioning and traffic is not as important as at other tracks.
- The large track at Pocono allows for more cars on the lead lap: 28 finished on lead lap in the Spring 2015 race.
- The Pole Winner in the last four races has performed well with none of them finishing lower than 11th and Jimmie Johnson winning the 2013 race from the pole while leading 128 of the 160 laps.
- Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota have been dominating NASCAR and flat tracks recently.
- Kyle Busch looks to pick up his first Cup win here in his career and to tie the record for consecutive Cup race wins.
My Pre-Qualifying Favorites: As we know, qualify order is extremely important in DraftKings scoring, but here are my favorites to win based solely on historical data. These picks can be used for conventional fantasy NASCAR games where finishing position is all that matters,
#88 Dale Earnhardt Jr., Microsoft Chevrolet for $9,200: Won both races here last year and finished a respectable 11th in June.
#18 Kyle Busch, M&M Crispy Toyota for $10,800: Why not, you can’t get any hotter than Kyle and the #18 team, winners of 4 of the last 5 Cup races.
#78 Martin Truex Jr., Furniture Row Chevrolet for $10,300: Won here in June and is looking to sweep the season at Pocono like fellow Chevy driver Dale Jr. did in 2014. Had a 4th place finish last week at Indy.
I will release my final DraftKings-centric Picks on Saturday after Qualifying.Jul 31, 2015; Long Pond, PA, USA; NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Jeff Gordon (24) leads driver Clint Bowyer (15) onto the track during qualifying for the Windows 10 400 at Pocono Raceway. Mandatory Credit: Matthew O
General DraftKings Strategy: The next thing to consider while filling out your teams is the DraftKings scoring system. DraftKings owners will draft a team of 6 drivers with a $50,000 Salary Cap. Scoring will be based on several factors including a driver’s Finishing Position, Place Differential, Fastest Laps, and Laps Led.
The salaries used are set weekly for each contest before qualifying and practice and are based on the overall strength of each driver/team/car for that particular race. The calculations that DraftKings use to determine drivers’ salaries are based on a driver’s ability to score fantasy points and as such consider all the four aforementioned factors. Since NASCAR is a new Daily Fantasy game, DraftKings has made it easier for players to understand the scoring system by listing a driver’s Fantasy Points Per Race (FPPR) next to a driver’s salary that shows a driver’s performance to date (including 2015 races that did not have DK contests). The following are some of the factors that determine a driver’s salary and something that a fantasy player should look at:
- A Driver and/or Team’s current level of speed and performance this season.
- A Driver and/or Team’s history at that specific track and race.
- A Driver and/or Team’s history at similar tracks and races.
Because the DraftKings salaries are set prior to qualifying and practice, there are many things that can change a driver’s relative fantasy value before the race starts. Some things to consider:
- Qualifying and practice speed are a good (but not the only) indicator of a driver’s projected performance and factor largely in a driver’s potential to maximize points in the Finish Position, Fastest Laps, and Laps Led categories.
- The DraftKings points system is unique and emphasizes both in-race performance as well as finishing position. So it is paramount to target at least some drivers that start further back in the field yet can compete as a top-performing car. This will get you points in the Place Differential category.
We will be back on Saturday evening with our Windows 10 400 Fantasy Picks!