The rankings below are based on a mixture of expected output and DraftKings’ NASCAR salaries for that day. The ordering is not based on the highest projected fantasy totals, but rather by the value of each driver.
The DraftKings ToyotaCare 250 slate locks at 1:30 p.m. ET on Saturday.
1. Kyle Busch ($16,500) - Just play him. The stats do not matter, and the lack of Richmond truck race stats do not matter. This decision is simple. Will NASCAR hit Busch with multiple pit road penalties? If the answer is no, then he leads most of the race and wins.
2. Grant Enfinger ($9,500) - The No. 98 ThorSport truck was the best truck on the track at Richmond. It was exceptional on the long run. Unfortunately, Enfinger isn’t a great pick this weekend. If he has to wait for long-run speed, Kyle Busch will be too far ahead each run. Also, his crew chief from last season is no longer with the team.
3. Ben Rhodes ($8,300) - Last fall, Rhodes had the second-best truck. It was a truck worthy of leading laps, but his 76 points were the result of track position and a tire advantage in stage 2. With Kyle Busch racing, he’ll be lucky to top 45 points this time out.
4. Chandler Smith ($7,900) - A choose cone violation sent Smith to the back to start stage 3 at Richmond. He battled his way back into the top 10. But, like most drivers, he did not pit during the last caution. On ancient tires, Smith finished 12th.
5. Timmy Hill ($7,000) - The team is small and the odds against are great, but Hill continues to impress. Timmy Hill is building fast trucks, and he gets the most out of them behind the wheel. No one would give Hill a decent ride, so he did it himself. Hill earned a legit ninth-place finish last season at Richmond. He was at a tire disadvantage and still hung on for a top-10 finish.
6. John H. Nemechek ($11,500) - Don’t expect Nemecheck to lead laps, but don’t expect anyone not named Kyle Busch to lead laps at Richmond either. Place differential and finishing position points are on the board for Nemechek, and that gives him a DFS advantage over the other top-tier drivers.
7. Stewart Friesen ($8,100) - It’s not wise to write off races from the previous year, but it’s acceptable for Friesen. Last season was the first time his team did everything in-house, and doing that during the pandemic was a major problem. It looks like Friesen is back to his former top-five ways.
8. Sheldon Creed ($10,500) - He no-showed this race last year. This season has been a quiet one for Creed so far. The sample size is a small and odd one, but DFS players are right to expect more from the defending champ.
9. Matt Crafton ($8,700) - Every week, Crafton is a third to eighth-place truck. At Richmond, he was closer to an eighth-place truck, so he decided to take tires early when most of the field stayed out. That ended up being the last caution, and Crafton nearly won based on a huge tire advantage.
10. Brett Moffitt ($9,000) - Moffitt was just OK for more of 2020. Richmond was another unremarkable top-10 day, so he gambled. Moffitt and a couple other drivers decided to pit early in stage 3. They gambled that there would not be another caution, and they were right. Unfortunately, his tire advantage could only cover for his inferior equipment for so long.
11. Johnny Sauter ($7,700) - A mechanical issue ruined his Richmond race right out of the gate. The team fixed the truck, and he ran top-10 laps in stage 2 and stage 3. If Sauter avoids misfortune — that’s a big if — then he should easily earn a top-10 finish.
12. Chase Purdy ($6,700) - Jeff Hensley, Purdy’s crew chief, has won the last two Richmond truck races. This could be a turning point race in the young career of the GMS driver.
13. Todd Gilliland ($7,200) - His finish in the 2020 Richmond race is a bit deceiving. Like most of the field, Gilliland did not pit during what turned out to be the final caution. So, his tires were toast the last 15 laps. Gilliland was a top-10 driver all race until his tires gave out at the end.
14. Carson Hocevar ($5,500) - He ran well at Atlanta. This is not Atlanta, but Hocevar’s strong run at the challenging track in Atlanta is a good sign for him and the Niece trucks. Hocevar has been a good short track racer in the late model series, so this will be a great opportunity to attract attention and possibly a better future ride.
15. Sam Mayer ($9,200) - This is not Mayer’s typical GMS ride. He’s driving for Stacey Holmes, but the truck was built by GMS. Mayer won at Bristol last year and led laps at Gateway, but that was in pure GMS equipment. This truck has not earned a top-30 finish in its two races.
16. Jett Noland ($6,800) - It’s a Niece truck and the 2020 Trans-Am TA-2 Rookie of the Year. It’s questionable whether any of those statements mean anything. The one thing that does matter: Noland is starting 36th.
17. Derek Kraus ($8,500) - His Richmond setup was absolute garbage last season. His team could not get the splitter off of the track. It is surprising the rookie with a rookie team did not miss setups more often in the 2020 sans practice format. Hopefully, they built their notebook after last year’s debacle.
18. Raphael Lessard ($7,100) - A mechanical failure ended his race early at Richmond last season, but he ran well at Gateway. This season, it’s been nothing but bad luck except at the one race that doesn’t matter, Bristol. This is a really cheap price for a GMS truck.
19. Danny Bohn ($5,700) - Brenna Poole got more out of this truck last season, but Bohn occasionally impressed DFS players. Bohn had a rough night at Richmond last year, but he was pretty good at the other short, flat tracks in 2020. He finished seventh at Martinsville and 16th at Gateway.
20. Tate Fogleman ($4,900) - Young Motorsports trucks are consistently 20th-place trucks and Foglemen is a 20th-place driver. That’s nothing to get excited about, unless Fogleman is priced below $5,000 and starting outside of the top 20, and he is.
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