Onto round two at Michigan International Speedway for the Consumers Energy 400. Saturdays race had a lot of the normal things we see at a Michigan race, Multiple racing lanes, crazy restarts and pit strategy. The newest element that NASCAR implemented this weekend and for the rest of the season is the “Choose cone”. We saw different strategies play out and saw drivers like Chase Elliott get the lead by choosing the bottom lane when the others ahead chose the top lane. I am interested on how this will play out moving forward at other tracks that aren’t a road course or superspeedway. Of course just like the other doubleheaders on the schedule, the starting lineup will be the inverted top 20 from todays race then the starting order will be the way they finished from 21 on back. I do think there is a pretty chalky build for cash that could come down to a 1v1 in most cases. I do like this race for tournaments and my write up will address drivers who I think are important to target on Sunday. There are value place differential drivers that will be listed on the final thoughts in the morning so make sure to subscribe to the NASCAR package to see where I rank all the drivers for Sundays race. As for strategy, like most doubleheaders, I think we are targeting dominators more as high priced place differential drivers who will need good finishing position upside to pay off their price. The right mix of those drivers along with some of the value drivers will be the ideal strategy for Sunday.
Kevin Harvick (DK $11,500 FD $14,000)
After today’s race, I am not sure how you can’t look at Kevin Harvick as a driver to love on Sunday. He was the best car in the field by a mile. Well there were multiple leaders at different points in the race, Harvick always found his way back to the front within a few laps. Now the best car in the field will start 20th in the same car he dominated with Saturday. His place differential upside and total domination not only on Saturday but in the last few races at Michigan (wins in 3 of the last 4 races here) make him a must play in all formats on both Fanduel and Draftkings. I think there are better options on SuperDraft with much better multipliers so I will probably not play him there.
Martin Truex Jr (DK $10,800 FD $12,800)
Truex started off behind the 8 ball on Saturday getting a flat tire and being a lap down through the first two stages. Once he got back on the lead lap he became an instant staple in the top 5 for the final stage. In his interview at the end of the race, he seemed really confident that they have the chance to come back Sunday and be a contender for the win. Truex has great track history here. He starts 18th on Sunday and proved on Saturday that the car is capable of making it through the field and they are capable of making strategy calls to get up towards the front.
Ryan Blaney (DK $9,900 FD $12,000)
Blaney was one of the better cars on Saturday. Of course nobody was going to come close to Harvicks car but during that second stage, Blaney showed the ability to stay out front for awhile and make Harvick work to get by him. A pit stop close to the end of the race almost doomed him once again. However a couple cautions allowed him to take advantage of the choose cone and get track postion and ended up finishing 4th. Blaney was third in green flag speed on Saturday and showed he was able to work his way back towards the front. The one thing we don’t know with Harvick is how his car will do deep in traffic because he was never really put into that position so Truex and Blaney have that advantage over him on Sunday.
Alex Bowman (DK $8,400 FD $9,200)
Bowman is surrounded by drivers who are all starting around the top 10 well he is starting from the 21st position on Sunday. Bowman ranked 8th in green flag speed and earlier this year at Auto Club Speedway he was really good and dominant and won that race. Well I don’t expect Bowman to win this race on Sunday, I can see Bowman easily finishing inside the top 10 and at a cheaper price he has great tournament upside.
Erik Jones (DK $8,000 FD $10,000)
Jones was exceptionally fast on Saturday. He finished inside the top five in green flag speed. With cars that we know Erik is better then ahead of him, it wouldn’t surprise me to see him up inside the top 5 really quick. His finishing position upside is the attraction here. At 8k and starting 10th he will go overlooked for the higher priced drivers with more pd upiside and floor and the 6-7k guys who have great floor and upside as well. I like Jones as a pivot off of someone like a chalky Custer or Stenhouse. Don’t forget, Brad and Erik want to be the first Michigan native to win at MIS and Jones is driving with even more motivation looking for a ride next season.
Kyle Busch (DK $9,400 FD $11,700)
One of the knocks on KB this season has been the lack of practice has hurt his ability to fine tune his car to his liking for each race. These doubleheaders are intriguing when looking at Kyle. If you remember at Pocono, prior to Blaney spinning him, Busch had one of the better cars there. Kyle Busch said something on the radio you don’t often here. He said that he liked his car! Just imagine what a few hours of looking at todays data and fine tuning his race car could do for him Sunday. I really like Kyle as a tournament option on Sunday to mix in with one of the top guys and chalkier guys like AD, Custer and RSJ.
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