Today’s race at Kansas Speedway takes place at the bread and butter of the NASCAR Cup Series, the 1.5-mile oval. That means DraftKings strategy should be familiar to long-time DFS players. We’ll typically want to roster two dominators, with some lineups leaning toward three dominators and a smaller number leaning only toward one.
With so many races at 1.5-mile tracks, there’s plenty of data to work with. All of this data rolls into my prediction model, which will help us find the best value plays for today’s 400-mile race.
NASCAR at Kansas DraftKings Dominator Picks
Chase Elliott ($11,200) — Elliott was the driver to beat for most of the race at Las Vegas, when NASCAR was last at a 1.5-mile track. That event also saw the debut of the current right side tire, which will also be used at Kansas. Elliott starts on pole, and has to contend with Joey Logano, Kurt Busch, and Kevin Harvick starting second through fourth.
Each of these three drivers are outside the top five in average green flag speed at the low wear 1.5-mile tracks when we remove unrepresentative races from every driver. Elliott should dominate early and be in contention for the win if he stays out of trouble. He has the second best average green flag speed only to Denny Hamlin, who starts seventh.
Denny Hamlin ($10,600) — Speaking of Hamlin, he’s my second dominator pick after Elliott. Hamlin’s speed at low wear 1.5-mile tracks this year is tops among all drivers if we remove his misleading 29th place result at the Coca-Cola 600 where he finished two laps down. Hamlin is the co-favorite in betting markets alongside Harvick.
However, Hamlin has more victories, top-three finishes, and stage wins than Harvick. He also starts three spots further back, giving him slightly more place differential potential.
Other potential dominators ranked in order of likelihood by my model: Martin Truex Jr., Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano, Ryan Blaney, Brad Keselowski, Alex Bowman.
NASCAR at Kansas DraftKings Value Picks
Kyle Busch ($9,900) — Busch works well in a two dominator lineup where you don’t consider him as one of the dominators. That’s because he starts 20th, which means it’ll be tough for him to lead today. However, you’ll likely need one of those two dominators to be under 10k to ensure proper roster construction. Otherwise you’ll be digging extremely deep into the back markers to construct lineups.
Busch has the fifth-best average green flag speed ranking at the four 1.5-mile tracks where one side of tires in use this weekend was also previously used.
Busch is a fine tournament play, but pay attention to how you construct your roster with him in your lineup.
Austin Dillon ($7,500) — Dillon has been exceptional at the low wear 1.5-mile tracks. He has an average finish of 8.0 in five incident free races. The other two races produced misleading results, with major incidents at the first Kansas race, and at the Series’ most recent 1.5-mile event at Las Vegas.
Dillon rolls off 17th, but has top 10 potential if he doesn’t encounter trouble.
John Hunter Nemechek ($6,100) — Nemechek has had solid results at the four races where one side of the tires have been used earlier this year. He’s finished in the top 20 in all four of those races, and has the 22nd best average green flag speed at these events.
By starting 32nd, and not being priced up, he’s an easy lock in cash games. He should also be used heavily in tournaments.