Daily Fantasy NASCAR Recommendations: Toyota/Save Mart 350 – Sonoma
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This weekend the drivers of the Monster Energy Nascar Cup Series will run the first of two road courses that are on the docket this season. Sonoma Raceway is the site for the 29th Annual Toyota/SaveMart 350 which it will take at least 110 circuits to crown the winner. This of course is not a lot of laps compared to most of the races on the schedule, but there are enough laps to make a difference if you can nail the driver who leads the most of them.
What makes this race interesting is that it is the first road race to be run under the new ‘stage’ rules. The first two stages will consist of 25 laps each while the last stage is more than double that number as the drivers will run 60 laps to the finish. One strategy that seems to be in play is that if you are not in the top 10 at the end of each stage it may be better if you pit before the pits close as you will not lose a lap and will be at the front of the pack when the race starts back up. That would definitely put a wrinkle in things if that strategy is employed and actually work. If you think about it, it most certainly could work which would make this race wide open to almost any driver talking home the checkered flag.
The course is laid out over 10 turns that encompass almost two miles in length which is why drivers will not lose a lap when they choose to pit. Kyle Larson ($9,300) has the course record with the fastest lap of one minute and 14.186 seconds which he ran back in 2015. Although his effort wasn’t quite as fast in qualifying the driver of the # 42 Target Chevrolet will start from the pole and try to win his second straight race from that position. His price isn’t that bad either as there are plenty of other drivers you could take that may do worse at this price point. Now that I gave you a head start, let’s take a look at some of the other drivers that may be able to help you take down a ton of cash today.
Although Martin Truex Jr ($10,300) has only three top 10 finishes in his last 10 starts here in California, he is none the less not only the highest priced driver but has been inserted by Las Vegas as the favorite to win the race at 9-2. By placing no lower than sixth in five of the last six races this season there is no doubt as to why he is this expensive. The driver of the # 78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Toyota will start from the third spot on the grid, which will give him at least an opportunity to lead a few laps this afternoon. The only question is that with this race shaping up to be wide open, is it worth taking a gamble on a driver that historically does not finish well here.
Kevin Harvick ($9,900), Jimmie Johnson ($9,600) and Brad Keselowski ($8,600) all join Kyle Larson as the second favored drivers as deemed by the almighty dollar. Las Vegas has each driver at 6-1 odds but look for both Johnson and Harvick to excel here as both have done well here historically. Harvick will start 12th with his six top 10 finishes in the last 10 races here in Sonoma while the driver of the # 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet will take his seven top 10 finishes and start a bit further back in the field in the 24thposition. Keep in mind what we said above as Johnson may be one of those drivers who can pit a lap earlier than the other drivers who are vying for those bonus points at the end of each stage.
Clint Bowyer ($9,400) and his high price will start from the 13th spot when the green flag drops this afternoon. It looks like the boys at DraftKings did a little homework as the price jump of $2,600 is surely based on his past history here at Sonoma. The driver of the # 14 Cars 3 Ford has racked up eight top 10 finishes in his last 10 starts here at the old Sears Point road course. This includes an electrical problem that took him out of last year’s race which will more than likely not happen this time around with the better team and better equipment. Based on his price Bowyer is probably a high risk-high reward play if you want to take down that GPP.
Kasey Kahne ($8,000) has done nothing but put up results here in California since his move to Hendrick Motorsports five years ago. Over the last four years he has finished in the top 10 in all four starts and finished 14th in his start five years ago. In fact, the driver of the # 5 Microsoft Windows 10 Chevrolet has finished higher in nine of his last 10 starts on this road course in which his only downfall was back in 2010 where he started from the pole and finished fourth. Not bad if you are looking for a little consistency. Kahne will roll off in the 21st position when they fire up the engines later this afternoon.
Matt Kenseth ($7,500) seems to be the free square here as the driver of the # 20 DeWalt Flexvolt Toyota did not even take a qualifying lap as he will start from the 38th spot in the field. Although he has just one top 10 finish in his last 10 starts here Kenseth should be able to move through at least half the field with ease. Look for his ownership to be pretty high in today’s contests.
Rookie Erik Jones ($7,000) needs to at least be considered here based on price alone as the young driver has found his way into the top 15 over the last four races this season. Yes, I know that a road course is a whole different animal but his 30th starting spot could reap some cheap benefits.
Every time a road course race shows up on the schedule you can be rest assured that some names that you may not have heard of show up in the starting lineup. After an illustrious racing career it has been rumored that Boris Saad ($5,100) will hang them up after the race in Watkins Glen later this season. Said always seems to be hired by someone to run the road course races as he finished in 26th place two years ago. He will start from the 34th position and will surely give you a low risk, low reward performance.
That will about do it for another look inside the world of Nascar racing. Check back here at Fanvice.com for all your fantasy season regardless of what season it is. As always, follow me on twitter @elctrceye and good luck in your contests this weekend.