Welcome to Left Turns -NASCAR DFS Picks for DraftKings and FanDuel write-up at Top Flight Fantasy Sports. Besides this article, we at Top Flight Fantasy Sports have the DraftKings NASCAR Control Tower & FanDuel NASCAR Control Tower putting tons of stats, projections, and proprietary grades in everyone’s hands. We also have a NASCAR DraftKings Optimizer & NASCAR FanDuel Optimizer that will be a huge help with all of the MME this season. And let’s be real about this – NASCAR is an MME sport. I know not everyone can play MME, so below I give you the plays I like best every week. You can use these plays as your core for MME as well.
GOODYEAR 400 Race Details:
Track: Darlington Raceway
Type: Intermediate (1.366 Miles)
Time: Sunday, May 9 @ 3:30 pm EST
The Goodyear 400 could be a tricky race for DFS purposes. I’ve seen a lot of chatter online about how there is a ton of information for this race because there were 3 Darlington races last season. That’s only partially true though as those races were in an entirely different package. They’re going to be using the same package they used at Bristol, Phoenix, Martinsville and Richmond for this weekend. That’s a package that moves some of the drivers who will be popular further down in my opinion. We need to consider that Darlington is a heavy tire wear track, similar to Bristol this year and also Atlanta and Homestead where teams chewed through tires. A heavy tie wear track means we need to pick not just drivers in fast equipment, but drivers who can actually drive.
We have 293 laps this week, and because of that we will want to have 2 dominators if possible. Normally we would be looking further back to our lower priced drivers for place differential, but a lot of those drivers are starting closer to the top. You have a choice of starting a cheaper driver near the top, or a higher priced driver further back.
I’m going to focus on the tracks listed above, and also I will look and see who drives well here. The package used last season was also used in 2019, so recent track data could be skewed, but tire wear is similar, so we can look at that for good drivers. I think we should see a lot of balanced lineups in this one, especially on FanDuel where it is a lot easier to make a lineup.
Make sure to take a few minutes to admire the throwback paint schemes this week!
These are your higher price drivers for NASCAR DFS. Depending on the race, and where they are starting, they are more than likely chalk.
I feel like this group is small this week, but a lot of important things to consider.
Kyle Larson is starting back in 14th, and though he didn’t race here last season, he has the second most laps led at Darlington with only 6 races. He leads laps here, he drives this course well, and there’s no reason to think he can’t make his way to the front. He gives us the possibility of being a great PD play and a dominator play at some point in the race.
I think the guy up here we want to consider as a huge dominator as well is Martin Truex Jr. Truex is starting the Goodyear 400 from the 4th position and a win here wouldn’t be out of the question. He’s really raced well in the 750HP package that they’ll be using in this race this season with a win at Martinsville and Phoenix. He also raced well at Atlanta and Homestead which are heavy wear tracks.
From there I think Denny Hamlin is similar to Larson, but only starting 7th. He won a race her last year, and should be able to hang around near the top for the most part. Hamlin is having a great season in general, with only 3 finishes outside the top 5.
Joey Logano is starting back in 12th, giving us a decent opportunity for PD if he can make his way to the front. My concern with Logano is that he hasn’t raced as well at the heavier tire wear tracks other than Bristol, but he’s raced well in the 750hp package with no finish lower than 6th.
Finally, Brad Keselowski is starting on the pole, which is good for dominating a race, but I don’t think he stays there long. He’s definitely playable even if he doesn’t but those lead laps are going to be important.
The mid-range drivers for NASCAR DFS. These drivers have top 5 potential and will often see some decent ownership.
I like a lot of the drivers in this tier this week as we have some drivers starting near the top as well as some decent PD plays.
I like Alex Bowman this week. Bowman is starting 19th, and is one of the drivers who I frequently play at heavy wear tracks finishing 9th at Homestead and 3rd at Atlanta. He also won the Richmond race a couple weeks ago showing he can race in this car package.
William Byron is starting 5th and has really raced well in this package as well as the high tire wear tracks. He finished 1st at Homestead and 8th at Atlanta. He hasn’t finished outside of 8th using the 750HP package.
I think we should take a look at Kurt Busch as he’s one of the drivers I think are very capable of driving on this track. Busch is starting 17th, giving us a decent PD potential, and though he hasn’t raced well in the 750HP package, he’s got the driving ability to move his way forward here at Darlington with 6 top 10 finishes in his last 10 races here as well as an 8th place finish at Homestead (he crashed at Atlanta, but did lead a lap!)
Kevin Harvick is a name that stands out as he hasn’t finished outside of the top 10 in his last 10 Darlington races. I’m going to be playing lineups with him, but I may be light on him. Harvick hasn’t raced well in the racing package they are using this week. That’s going to make it difficult to dominate, which is something we really need form someone starting the race from the 2nd spot. The same goes for Kyle Busch starting 3rd, who has 8 top 10s in his last 10. Play them in MMEs for sure, but understand the risk and be underweight.
Your lower tier priced players on both sites. These guys more than likely won’t win the race. Here we will target drivers who will get us points through Place Differential for NASCAR DFS.
Erik Jones…Welcome back to the article! Jones is starting 26th, which is where he should be based on his equipment and how his season has gone so far. He’s never finished lower than 8th here. In 6 Darlington races, he has a win, 4 top 5, and 6 top 10 finishes. even in bad equipment, I can’t see him finishing without making up some PD.
Here’s where this gets tricky. We have a couple of drivers, namely Austin Dillon and Tyler Reddick who are starting 9th and 10th this week. We need them to finish pretty close to these spots or better to use them. I don’t know if that will happen, but I’m willing to play them a little bit to help my lineups work better. Don’t play heavy on them unless you think they could win, but have exposure in MMEs. Chris Buescher is in a similar situation starting 11th.
There’s some appeal to Ryan Newman in this one starting 20th. Newman has 4 top 10 finishes at Darlington in his last 10. He raced well at Homestead and Atlanta, and did pretty well at Bristol as well.
A little lower down, I think we can look at Ross Chastain. Chastain is starting 18th, which is my biggest concern, but he races well at heavy wear tracks. He raced well here in the Xfinity race last year.
The Yellow Flags
These are your deep punts – use with caution! They will help you fit the high-price drivers but may not do much more for NASCAR DFS. Minimize their use in your lineups. Do not use in cash!
Josh Bilicki is the guy I’m punting with this week. No reason really other than he’s starting last, so he hurts you the least from a negative PD potential, but he does have a +6 PD in both of his Darlington Cup races.
Good luck and have fun but remember that NASCAR is an extremely volatile sport. Never go a full 100% on any driver.