The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series returns to points competition Sunday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the longest race on the schedule, the Coca-Cola 600.
There were two cars unable to pass through pre-qualifying inspection in time to lay down a qualifying lap. Series points leader Kyle Larson will be starting at the back of the pack, alongside Corey LaJoie.
The DraftKings strategy for intermediate tracks is all about finding dominators for your roster. A dominator is a driver who will run up front, lead laps and generate fast laps for extra bonuses.
Alternatively, for the middle to back end of lineups, it’s crucial to find a someone that performed poorly in qualifying and could work their way up the field for those coveted position differential points.
This week’s fantasy forecast is backed by DraftKings, the No. 1 platform for Daily Fantasy Sports. You can jump in on all of the daily fantasy NASCAR action at Charlotte this weekend by signing up here for a free entry into one of this weekend’s contests. All you have to do is make a $5 deposit to get started!
Here are two drivers that are hot starts for Sunday’s DraftKings contests.
Kyle Larson ($10,100)
Starting Position: 39th
Larson will be starting in the 39th position on Sunday. This sets up huge potential for positive position differential points. A win would award 38 points for gaining positions, on top of the 46 given for a win. That 84-point total doesn’t even include any laps led or any fastest laps run.
Let’s say that Larson can’t pull off the win. Even if he finishes in seventh, which is his average finishing spot through 11 races this season, he would still accumulate 32 points for positions gained and 37 points for the finishing position.
Larson is averaging a third-place finish on intermediate tracks this season, a big factor as to why he sits atop the standings heading into week 12. This number would be the one to pay attention to most. A top five would make Larson one of the top scorers for the weekend.
All past season numbers can be thrown out the window for the No. 42 team. The cars it is bringing to the track in 2017 are much improved over the past three seasons that Larson has been racing. But Larson does have one top-10 finish in his three Coca-Cola 600 efforts. He also finished fifth in the fall Charlotte race last season.
Larson may not lead the most laps as a result of having to fight traffic in the beginning of the race, but the new stage format jumbles up the field after 100 laps anyway. A good, clean race will result in a fantastic DraftKings performance.
Kyle Busch ($9,800)
Starting Position: Second
Kyle Busch has yet to pick up a win this season in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. He did win the All-Star Race last weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway, but that race does not pay out any points and does not count as a playoff clinching win. In fact, Busch has never graced victory lane at Charlotte at the Cup level.
Even though he hasn’t won there, he does have an impressive resume. He has 10 top-five finishes at the track, including a sixth-place result last fall. He has led laps in 18 of his 26 career starts at Charlotte and is in prime position to lead more this weekend. Busch will be starting alongside Kevin Harvick on the front row. Busch already has 521 laps led on the season.
Kyle is the cheaper front row option, which allows for more wiggle room when building the middle of your DraftKings lineups. Busch is on a two-race top-five streak at the moment and is more motivated than ever to get the monkey off his back in 2017.
At Charlotte, clean air is king. Cars starting at the front of the pack will be running faster laps than any in traffic. Busch’s potential for fast laps and laps led will be more than enough to justify looking his way for your lineups.
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