Just like last week at Atlanta, DraftKings is offering a massive Piston contest for Sunday’s race at Las Vegas, with $400,000 in total prizes and $100,000 going to 1st. Each entry is $10 and there’s a max of 150 entries per user. Again, it’ll be interesting to see whether or not this huge contest fills, as it was close last weekend at Atlanta. With today’s race, the “new” rules package is in full effect, and I personally have some major concerns on how scoring is going to play out in DraftKings (more on that later). I plan on lowering my “normal” play amount this week for the Pennzoil 400, just to get an idea of how this package will factor into Fantasy NASCAR, although I said the same at Atlanta last weekend and ended up playing my normal amount–and it worked out quite well. Hopefully I was able to help win you money last weekend as well.
DraftKings Strategy Tactics for Las Vegas
As mentioned before, I have some major concerns with today’s race at Las Vegas from a DraftKings perspective. My main worry is fastest laps. Typically, the leader gets the majority of the fastest laps, which makes sense. However, with the drafting and a full-blown new rules packing this weekend, I’m anticipating fastest laps coming from the middle of the field. I could be totally wrong, but from looking at practice speeds with drafting, it looks like the leader may have a hard time getting a ton of dominator points.
Another concern I have for today at Las Vegas Motor Speedway is wrecks. These cars do not handle well when they get close to each other, and I think we’ll have a higher amount of wrecks than we typically see at a 1.5-mile track. Again, I could be totally wrong, but that’s how I’m seeing the Pennzoil 400 unfolding today.
Qualifying on Friday was interesting in itself, and we have quite a few good cars starting mid-pack or worse today. You can find the full Las Vegas starting lineup by clicking here.
GPP Drivers I Love for the Pennzoil 400
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not great with predicting ownership percentages, so take this for what it is: I like being heavy on Kyle Busch ($11,900) and Brad Keselowski ($11,400) today. I have Keselowski projected to score the most DraftKings points this weekend, but I think he’s going to be quite high-owned here at Las Vegas on Sunday. Not only does Keselowski start back in 19th (good place differential potential), but he’s won three of the last six Vegas races, and I think the #2 Ford was the best car in practice on Saturday. Ideally, I like being around 40-50% owned with Keselowski, and if that’s overweight, awesome.
As far as Kyle Busch goes, I think he’s a great pivot off of Kevin Harvick (and Brad Keselowski for that matter, as I wouldn’t put both on the same lineup). Rowdy is going for the weekend sweep at his home race track today, and I think he has a great chance at pulling it off. The #18 Toyota had the best ten-lap average in practice on Saturday among the cars that made their runs later in the session, and Kyle has had the best average finish (5.2) on the 1.5-mile tracks since the start of 2018. For what it’s worth, four of the last five Vegas races have been won by a driver starting inside the top 4. The exception was Brad Keselowski in the fall race last year, when he won after starting 13th.
Erik Jones ($8,400) – Erik Jones has made me a lot of money in DraftKings on the 1.5-mile tracks, and when he qualifies back in 18th like he did this weekend, that’s music to my ears. Jones is a top 10 machine when it comes to tracks like this, and looking at the races since the start of the 2018 season, he has the 7th-best average finish (12.0) on the 1.5-milers with just three results worse than 11th. Jones had the 6th-best ten-lap average in Saturday’s practice session in Sin City, but the main reason I like him for the Pennzoil 400 is a strategy move: Erik is sandwiched in between Aric Almirola ($8,600) and Kurt Busch ($8,200), who both start significantly further back than the #20 Toyota (25th and 28th, respectively). Give me Jones as a pivot off of one of them, as all three are great place differential candidates, but it’s unlikely they all finish up front.
GPP Fade Options for Las Vegas
I feel like there are some drivers that are no-brainer fades, but after finding these type of DFS suggestions last week (click here), I guess we have to go over these since there are writers out there getting paid to make awful suggestions. David Ragan ($5,900), Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. ($7,900), Michael McDowell ($5,700), and Bubba Wallace ($6,300) are full fades in my book. You won’t see them on a single one of my lineups. Close behind are Austin Dillon ($7,600), Daniel Hemric ($7,100), and Ty Dillon ($6,000). I wouldn’t recommend having more than 5% exposure with those last three.
Looking at drivers that aren’t no-brainer fades, I won’t have much Clint Bowyer ($9,000) exposure on Sunday, if any. He qualified back in 17th for Sunday’s Pennzoil 400, so there’s definitely some room for place differential there, but a career average finish of 18.1 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway doesn’t get me too excited about Bowyer and his $9,000 price tag. Add in the fact that the #14 team had issues with handling during practice on Saturday, which caused a lack of speed, and that salary cap hit is better spent elsewhere. Denny Hamlin ($8,800) is another driver I’m not too keen on for Las Vegas, as he qualified 2nd. There’s always that outside chance that the #11 Toyota could lead a handful of laps, but more than likely, Hamlin is going to have negative place differential and a top 10 finish. That won’t put him in the winning lineup on Sunday.
As far as pole sitter Kevin Harvick ($12,500) goes, I like being underweight on him today. Ideally, I’m seeing myself at around 25% Harvick exposure. As mentioned before, I have concerns about the leader getting fastest laps in this race, and while I do project Harvick to lead quite a bit of the Pennzoil 400, he’s going to need major dominator points in order for that $12,500 price tag to be worth it.
Las Vegas Pennzoil 400 DraftKings Projections
You can click the headers below to sort the chart by that attribute. By default it is sorted by average projected FPTS.
|Driver||Starting Position||DraftKings Salary||Avg Proj FPTS||Avg. Projected Finish||Proj Laps Led||Proj Fastest Laps||Dollar Per FPT|
|Martin Truex Jr||23||$10,100||68.5||06.6||14||20||$147|
|Ricky Stenhouse Jr||8||$7,900||16.4||19.2||1||5||$483|