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NASCAR Fantasy Rankings: DFS Picks on DraftKings for NASCAR Cup Series Verizon 200 at the Brickyard at Indianapolis

Pearce Dietrich gives his picks and ranks his top drivers for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series Verizon 200 at the Brickyard at Indianapolis, which locks at 2:30 p.m. ET on DraftKings.

The rankings below are based on a mixture of expected output and DraftKings’ NASCAR salaries for Sunday. The order is not based on the highest projected fantasy totals, but rather by the value of each driver.

The DraftKings NASCAR Cup Series Verizon 200 at the Brickyard at Indianapolis slate locks at 2:30 p.m. ET on Sunday.

Set your DraftKings fantasy NASCAR lineups here: NAS $350K Engineer [$100K to 1st] (Cup)

1. Chase Elliott ($10,600) — Going back to 2018 (18 road courses races), Elliott has an average finish of 6.1. The next closest driver is Martin Truex with an average finish of 10.5. Elliott is one of the best ever.

2. Kyle Larson ($10,200) — In terms of average finish at a road course since 2018, Larson ranks No. 3. That’s with inferior CGR equipment holding him back. Since joining Hendrick last season, he has six podiums and three wins. His lone poor performance — 16th in the 2021 Road America race — could have been a win before he got wrecked late in the race.

3. Ross Chastain ($10,400) — Real Rating is my own statistical creation that comprehensively synthesizes a driver’s laps. Chastain has a 0.92 rating for the three road courses this season (1.00 is a perfect score). Chastain is tied for the best Real Rating with Chase Elliott.

4. Tyler Reddick ($10,000) — Despite a 0.54 Real Rating at Sonoma, Reddick has the third-best Real Rating for the three road course events (0.83). After the 2020 season, Reddick dedicated himself to improving at road courses, and that paid off with a win at Road America.

5. Austin Cindric ($9,100) — Expecting Cindric to burst onto the scene and immediately dethrone Chase Elliott is asking a lot. Cindric has a top-5 Real Rating at the road courses this season. That’s pretty strong for a rookie in a new car.

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6. Martin Truex Jr ($9,600) — As mentioned above, Truex is the second best road racer in NASCAR. However, most of those stats were accumulated when NASCAR raced at the same two road courses every season.

7. Kyle Busch ($9,800) — The JGR Toyotas struggled at Sonoma and Road America. Those tracks have some similarities but Indy is different. There is reason to believe that JGR has figured out their issues or that the Indy setup is independent of their previous road course struggles.

8. Alex Bowman ($7,800) — This could come as a surprise but it shouldn’t: Alex Bowman has the fourth-best average finish at road courses since 2018. Bowman doesn’t strike anyone as a road course wiz, but Hendrick builds road course rocket ships.

9. Denny Hamlin ($8,900) — How should DFS players react to the first three road races in the Next Gen car? Over the last 18 road course races, Hamlin has the fifth-best average finish. He should have won the inaugural Indy GP but Briscoe dumped him at the end.

10. Ryan Blaney ($9,200) — His road course win (Roval 2018) was lucky, but that shouldn’t be used to diminish his skills. Blaney finished sixth at COTA and Sonoma, and 11th at Road America.

11. A.J. Allmendinger ($8,200) — His 2021 Indianapolis Cup Series win was a stroke of luck. The race went haywire. Turtle shells exploded cars, and Chase Briscoe drove through the grass and dumped the leader. When the dust settled, Allmendinger was the winner. It wasn’t random. He put himself in position to win if the roval race went crazy, and it went crazy as they tend to do.

12. Kevin Harvick ($8,400) — Over the last decade, Harvick has been one of the best road course racers, but times have changed. His equipment is no longer the best, and with the proliferation of road courses on the circuit, it’s not quite as easy to consistently churn out podium finishes at the crooked courses.

13. Michael McDowell ($7,300) — Everything is working for McDowell and Front Row Motorsports. As expected, they struggled at the short, flat track in New Hampshire. Last week, McDowell bounced back with a top-10 finish at Pocono. Even before his sudden emergence, McDowell was widely considered a good road racer.

14. Chris Buescher ($7,500) — As the kids say, put some respect on his name. Since 2018, Buescher has a top-10 average finish at the road courses. In terms of Real Rating, Buescher ranks No. 7 for the three road events this season.

15. Austin Dillon ($6,700) — There are a lot of drivers that could be ranked No. 15 this week. Dillon gets the nod because he’s been decent on the road courses this season (10th at COTA and 11th at Sonoma) and he’s running double-duty.

Set your DraftKings fantasy NASCAR lineups here: NAS $350K Engineer [$100K to 1st] (Cup)

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is greenflagradio2) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.

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