We’re going to line ’em up and run ’em again this weekend, as we have the Verizon 200 at The Brickyard this afternoon. Last weekend at Watkins Glen, we got another “normal” road course race with nothing too crazy happening, and if we get that same thing here at Indianapolis today, you can expect the exact same drivers to be in contention. As mentioned on the Stacking Dennys podcast this week, the only thing the Watkins Glen race has done is give us one more race of data to consider, but who’s actually fast hasn’t changed. There was one practice session this weekend (click here for speeds) but make sure you don’t over-value the speeds of one 55-minute practice on a brand new track. We don’t have much time between qualifying and the race so let’s goooo!!!!

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Speed Report & Loop Data Driver Averages

Denny Hamlin leaning next to car at Pocono 2021
Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images

Again, we’re focusing on road course tracks this weekend. So far in 2021, we have raced at the Daytona Road Course, COTA, Sonoma, Road America, and Watkins Glen (which was last week). Below you will find the Driver Averages and Statistics charts for those five races, as well as a second table that disregards COTA since it was ran in the rain. The following statistics are included in these tables:

  • Starts
  • Finish
  • ARP = average running position
  • DR = driver rating
  • FL = fastest laps (total)
  • LL = laps led (total)
  • T15 = laps ran inside top 15 (total)
  • Total Laps = laps completed (total)

2021 Driver Averages At Road Courses

Driver
Starts
Finish
ARP
DR
FL
LL
T15
Total Laps
Kyle Larson510.005.9117.65488346368
Chase Elliott505.408.1121.76986301368
Martin Truex Jr512.408.6104.72638287338
Denny Hamlin507.009.4101.52013303368
Kyle Busch511.410.2106.71218282367
Joey Logano509.210.599.7840287368
Kurt Busch510.811.392.4312263368
Christopher Bell514.412.591.6255246332
Ross Chastain513.812.989.954249324
William Byron523.613.683.51220251351
Alex Bowman513.814.682.233197368
Kevin Harvick520.014.673.430200333
Tyler Reddick516.815.578.755194356
Matt DiBenedetto520.816.474.7510190363
Chase Briscoe514.016.577.000181368
Chris Buescher515.017.172.510147368
Austin Dillon517.017.372.300179367
Ryan Blaney515.218.172.610145368
Michael McDowell518.818.672.133125368
Brad Keselowski517.418.769.709147365
Aric Almirola520.018.863.501123368
Cole Custer520.818.963.700118338
Erik Jones517.419.865.810106367
Ryan Preece418.321.165.83273305
Ricky Stenhouse Jr521.622.558.12160316
Corey LaJoie522.822.853.00073368
Ryan Newman526.823.547.70051367
Bubba Wallace525.225.155.60077332
Daniel Suarez525.625.656.75269349
Anthony Alfredo526.826.445.90035347
Justin Haley429.527.740.70020233
James Davison528.429.941.30010319
Cody Ware430.530.039.8009269
Josh Bilicki530.230.138.8007364
Garrett Smithley430.832.431.8000303
Quin Houff535.233.227.6000260
AJ Allmendinger313.716.184.67287186
Austin Cindric231.516.880.6165689

2021 Driver Averages At Road Courses (Minus COTA)

Driver
Starts
Finish
ARP
DR
FL
LL
T15
Total Laps
Denny Hamlin405.308.5108.32013273314
Chase Elliott406.508.1121.95781256314
Kurt Busch406.811.296.4312227314
Martin Truex Jr406.807.3112.32635274314
Christopher Bell408.511.5101.6245233314
Joey Logano410.811.293.5626238314
Kyle Busch411.810.8104.736237313
Kyle Larson412.005.7116.35184297314
Ryan Blaney414.817.375.010131314
Alex Bowman415.314.680.930164314
Chris Buescher415.517.371.510114314
Kevin Harvick415.813.583.730200314
Chase Briscoe416.017.273.000138314
Ross Chastain416.313.584.920206270
Brad Keselowski417.018.172.909135311
Cole Custer417.018.069.200117314
Erik Jones417.819.765.81094313
AJ Allmendinger218.017.180.66254132
Austin Dillon418.317.073.300158313
Aric Almirola418.518.266.701116314
Tyler Reddick418.815.779.455166302
Ryan Preece319.323.161.33036251
Matt DiBenedetto420.316.376.4510167309
Ricky Stenhouse Jr421.522.757.21140262
Bubba Wallace421.824.852.50066314
Michael McDowell421.819.963.11089314
Corey LaJoie423.523.550.50052314
Daniel Suarez423.824.258.65269303
Justin Haley326.027.242.90017221
William Byron426.812.783.71220225297
Ryan Newman427.523.747.90039313
James Davison428.329.440.3009265
Anthony Alfredo429.027.342.70028293
Cody Ware330.030.635.6005216
Josh Bilicki430.330.236.1006310
Garrett Smithley331.733.329.9000249
Quin Houff435.533.226.9000222
Austin Cindric138.026.786.5121935

DraftKings Strategy & Dominators for Brickyard Road Course

This weekend’s race at Indianapolis is on the road course, which means we’re focusing mainly on place differential and finishing position for this race. Yes, there are going to be some dominator points, but with only 82 laps, it’s well below the usual.

  • Make sure you look back at the other “traditional” road courses when analyzing data for today’s race. I’d mainly focus on Watkins Glen data, this year’s Road America data, and maybe Sonoma. The next tier of data to look at would be at the rovals, but I would slightly devalue it compared to “traditional” road course data (although it’s still a strong data set to use). You can go ahead and throw this year’s COTA data in the trash.
  • Again, there are only 82 laps scheduled for today’s Verizon 200 at The Brickyard, so there aren’t going to be too many dominator points. We should focus mainly on finishing position and place differential. For laps led, there will be 20.5 DraftKings FPTS available and then for fastest laps, there will be approximately 29.25 DraftKings FPTS, as I’m expecting around 65 green flag laps.
  • Yes, there was practice this weekend, and yes we can pull some data from it. But keep in mind that it was one 55-minute session on a brand new track. Drivers are going to learn a lot more during the first half of this race today, and the best road course racers will finish up front if nothing crazy happens.

Dominators

These are the potential dominators for Sunday’s race at Indianapolis, and are listed in the order of likelihood according to my projections:

  • Chase Elliott
  • Kyle Larson
  • Martin Truex, Jr.
  • William Byron
  • Christopher Bell

Some “surprise” dominators that could happen on Sunday include: Chase Briscoe, Austin Cindric, Denny Hamlin, and Joey Logano.

Optimal Lineup According to Jordan’s Projections

The optimal DraftKings lineup for Indy Road Course according to my Projections is:

  • Kyle Busch
  • Denny Hamlin
  • Christopher Bell
  • Brad Keselowski
  • Austin Dillon
  • Ryan Preece

Confidence Rating = 7.3/10. This is a very safe cash lineup to use. You’re really just going all place differential here, but it works out because all three Joe Gibbs Racing cars have top 5 potential, while Brad Keselowski only needs a halfway decent finish to hit value today. The top lineup with Chase Elliott in it, according to my projections, is: Elliott, Bell, Kurt Busch, Keselowski, Austin Dillon, and Preece.

GPP / Tournament Picks

Matt DiBenedetto 21 Ford sitting on pit road at Atlanta Motor Speedway 2020
Photo Credit: Chris Graythen | Getty Images

Martin Truex, Jr. ($10,400) – Both Chase Elliott ($11,000) and Kyle Larson ($10,800) are the obvious favorites to win today’s race at the Indianapolis Road Course, and rank 1st and 3rd in my projected DraftKings points today, but don’t count out Martin Truex, Jr. The reason? His paint scheme. Just kidding, but seriously. If you’ve followed me for very long you know that I’v e proven that Truex wins and dominates more than usual when he runs the Auto Owners paint scheme, and he has a little more place differential potential than Elliott and Larson today. If the #19 Toyota can get out front early today, we could easily see Truex lead the most laps for the second road course race in a row.

Matt DiBenedetto ($7,400) – If you want to get off of that Brad Keselowski ($8,200) / Kevin Harvick ($8,000) chalk in the mid-range of this slate, consider Matt DiBenedetto down at $7,400 this weekend. Matty D has shown potential in the past at road course races and recently he came home 11th at Watkins Glen and 10th at Road America. He starts 15th here in today’s Verizon 200 at The Brickyard but has top 10 finishing potential. I just hope this team has dialed the setup back a little bit and the car has more long run speed than we saw at Road America.

Austin Dillon ($6,300) – I think down in this price range Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. ($5,900) is going to end up being the chalkier pick over Austin Dillon due to the $400 discount in salary, so give me AD as a tournament play today. In addition to running the Xfinity race on Saturday (extra track time), the #3 Chevrolet has simply been better than the #47 Chevrolet on road courses this year; Dillon has an average running position of 17.3 on road courses in 2021 while Stenhouse is at 22.5, and when it comes to average finish, Austin is at 17.0 while Ricky is at 21.6.

Cash Core Drivers

Christopher Bell hand in air celebrating after winning at Daytona Road Course 2021
Photo Credit: James Gilbert/Getty Images

Denny Hamlin ($10,000) – In qualifying on Sunday, Hamlin admittedly just messed up his lap to get into the final round of qualifying, but was more than confident that he would be able to challenge for the win. I personally don’t see that happening, but you never know, and a simple top 5 finish will be more than enough to pay off in DraftKings. Statistically, Hamlin has the 4th-best average running position on road courses this year and the 2nd-best average finish, and if you take out COTA, his average finish (5.3) is actually the best in the series.

Christopher Bell ($9,200) – According to my projections, Christopher Bell offers the best value-per-dollar on the slate today, as he’s starting back in 17th but has legitimate top 5 finishing potential. The projections have him with an average assumed finish of 7.2 today, and even then CBell is showing as a great value play in DraftKings. Getting a potential race-winning driver for $9,200 that also has solid place differential potential is a slam dunk in DFS. Roll with Christopher Bell today at the Indianapolis Road Course.

Ryan Preece ($5,700) – Yeah, I don’t like it very much but I think this is how the best lineup builds are going to go today. Ryan Preece has the most potential of the sub-$6,000 DraftKings drivers today, as he’s starting back in 30th but should finish in the mid to upper 20s if nothing goes wrong. This #37 team had a loose wheel plague them at Watkins Glen last weekend and ended up finishing 28th, but before that, Preece finished 23rd or better in six of the last seven road course races. He has an average running position of 21.1 on them this season.

Verizon 200 at The Brickyard DraftKings Driver Projections

The following chart takes into account the very basics: the starting position and the projected finish of each driver. The projected finishes are averaged from six different ranking systems. Also factored in are projected laps led and fastest laps for each driver. You can click the headers below to sort the chart by that attribute. By default it is sorted by average projected FPTS.

DriverDraftKings SalaryAvg Proj FPTSStarting PositionCeiling Proj FPTSAvg. Projected FinishDollar Per FPT
Chase Elliott$11,00058.97367.8002.0$187
Kyle Busch$10,20054.102159.7506.0$189
Kyle Larson$10,80053.43462.5002.8$202
Denny Hamlin$10,00051.521461.7004.0$194
Christopher Bell$9,20050.531760.7007.2$182
Martin Truex Jr$10,40048.28659.4503.3$215
Kurt Busch$9,00044.002058.9009.8$205
Brad Keselowski$8,20040.003150.0016.8$205
Austin Cindric$9,40039.771356.0509.8$236
Alex Bowman$8,40039.672445.4513.0$212
Joey Logano$9,60038.98748.0506.8$246
Kevin Harvick$8,00036.952549.9015.0$217
William Byron$9,80034.68154.5507.7$283
Ryan Blaney$8,60032.501642.4513.5$265
AJ Allmendinger$8,80031.93839.2010.7$276
Austin Dillon$6,30030.832336.0017.5$204
Ross Chastain$7,70028.83941.9012.5$267
Tyler Reddick$7,60028.401138.8013.7$268
Erik Jones$6,70027.172833.0022.3$247
Chris Buescher$7,10026.001934.0018.0$273
Ryan Preece$5,70024.673033.0023.7$231
Matt DiBenedetto$7,40023.401538.2518.3$316
Chase Briscoe$7,90021.20240.6514.2$373
Ricky Stenhouse Jr$5,90021.172233.0021.7$279
Aric Almirola$6,90019.001829.0021.2$363
Ryan Newman$6,10018.333226.0028.2$333
Corey Lajoie$5,60016.332631.0026.7$343
Bubba Wallace$6,00014.672727.0027.7$409
Anthony Alfredo$5,30013.173319.0030.7$403
Michael McDowell$7,20013.001227.4521.2$554
James Davison$5,20011.673416.0032.0$446
Cody Ware$4,70009.833716.0034.2$478
Justin Haley$5,50009.672921.0030.8$569
Cole Custer$6,40009.331023.0021.7$686
Garrett Smithley$4,60007.673916.0035.8$600
Josh Bilicki$5,00006.003611.0035.5$833
Quin Houff$4,50004.173813.0037.0$1,080
Timmy Hill$4,80003.674005.0038.8$1,309
Daniel Suarez$6,60002.62529.9023.8$2,522
As someone who has always been obsessed with numbers, Fantasy NASCAR has been the perfect fit with me. I pride myself on the quality of my analysis for each race, and am glad that I have been able to help others along the way. I've been a serious Fantasy NASCAR player for over 10 years now, and I'm just getting started.