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Dave’s Drivers to Watch – NASCAR DFS – O’Reilly Auto Parts 500

The Cup series heads to Texas Motor Speedway this weekend for what has been a really hot weekend of racing. Typically this race is run in the spring when temperatures are cooler then they are now. We saw in the Xfinity race how hot the in car temps got and expect the same elements for the drivers tomorrow. Texas is a 1.5 mile track that is in the same design as Atlanta and Charlotte so we can use results from those tracks more so Charlotte because Atlanta is a high tire wear track. As for strategy this weekend we are looking to get two dominators into our lineups and fill in with good place and finish position upside. We saw today, just like last week that passing the leader is a tough proposition so drivers who get to the front should get an advantage and lead a good chunk of laps. There will be some good debates this week such as who the early dominator could be and what mid range place differential driver is the best for cash.

Kevin Harvick (DK $11,300 FD $14,500)

Well there is some debate on a second dominator, I think the first dominator this weekend is an obvious pick. Harvick is one of the best drivers at Texas. He has not finished outside the top 10 in the last 11 races here. He has won three of the last five races here and has led laps in five of the last six races here. Take all that into account and add in the dominance that Harvick has shown since coming back from the lay off and Harvick is a great option in all formats on all sites on Sunday.

Christopher Bell (DK $9,100 FD $9,000)

Christopher Bell once again got the bad end of the draw and starts 33rd. However Draftkings didn’t go as crazy this week in pricing him and makes him an option in all formats. In the last two starts he’s made from the 30’s he has finished 7th and 12th and been an optimal play. In the three races at Charlotte and Atlanta he has finished 18th, 21st and 10th. In the Xfinity series last season, Bell had one win and a 3rd place finish and led over 100 laps in both races. I also like Christopher Bell on SuperDraft with his place differential upside and his 1.35x multiplier.

Ryan Blaney (DK $8,900 FD $11,200)

The front row for tomorrow’s race brings up an interesting dilemma when setting lineups, do you play Blaney, Almirola or both? Honestly I haven’t settled on one yet and will have exposure to both of them in gpps tomorrow. However, when looking at overall statistics, Blaney stands out just a little bit more then Almirola. Almirola had a great run of top 5 finishes but Blaney has shown the overall better green flag speed, especially at 1.5 mile tracks. Blaney was the best last week at Kentucky and ranked 7th, 3rd and 7th at Charlotte and Atlanta. Almirola ranked 3rd, 16th, 25th and 14th at those tracks. Over the entire length of the race, I feel like Blaney has the better chance of dominating over Almirola but Almirola has been so good lately that this is a legitimate debate expecially with the $800 price difference.

Tyler Reddick (DK $7,800 FD $8,500)

On Draftkings, I think this range is really interesting with some great plays. Erik Jones presents a great place differential option but hes priced up a little bit more and has been a thorn in the side of most dfs players over the past couple weeks(Means hes gonna crush Sunday if we aren’t playing him). If you take out the issues at Pocono, Reddick has had a solid season of solid top 10-15 finishes. Those include finishes of 16th, 14th and 9th at Atlanta and Charlotte and he had a top 10 at Kentucky last week. He has two career second place finishes in his Xfinity career here. Starting 24th he is a good place differential option on Sunday.

Martin Truex Jr (DK $10,400 FD $13,000)

Although his numbers have come back to Earth at 1.5 mile tracks, Truex has been known as the 1.5 mile king. When looking at this season, Truex had the best green flag speed at Atlanta and the Coca Cola 600 at Charlotte. He also had the second best green flag speed at Kentucky last weekend. He has backed those numbers up with finishes of 2nd, 3rd, 9th and 6th at those tracks. When looking at his track history, he has been a top 10 staple when he stays out of trouble and has led multiple laps in five of the last ten races here. Truex makes for an interesting option on Sunday.

Matt Kenseth (DK $7,600 FD $8,000)

When looking at career numbers at Texas, Kenseth ranks right near the top in overall drivers here at Texas and statistically speaking, Texas is Kenseth’s best track. He boasts an average finish here of 9.47 with two career victories here. His last race here he finished fourth and led 29 laps. Now I don’t expect Kenseth to compete for the win and it was nice to see him competing for the win at Indianapolis. Well he hasn’t had the best finishes at 1.5 mile tracks this season, I’m going to give him a slight pass because two of those came within the first four races he was with the 42 team after the break. He starts 22nd on Sunday and I think hes a great place differential option to target in tournaments.

Any questions, message me on twitter @davidjr831 and to get access to final thoughts, core and prop plays for Sunday and Thursday’s Cup series race subscribe to the NASCAR package below.

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