One of the best motorsports weekends of the year is upon us, as we have the F1 Monaco Grand Prix, the Indianapolis 500, and the Coca-Cola 600 all on the same day this Sunday. When it comes to the NASCAR, unfortunately, there were several drivers that had issues during practice, which means we’re stuck with yet another super chalky week of DraftKings DFS strategy. However, we have 600 miles to run on Sunday evening, and with how these 1.5-mile track races are going, we could see plenty of mayhem, so that opens the door to taking alternative strategies away from the chalk.

Optimal Lineup According to Jordan’s Projections

The optimal DraftKings lineup for Charlotte on Sunday according to my Projections is:

  • Kyle Larson
  • William Byron
  • Ross Chastain
  • Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.
  • Brad Keselowski
  • Corey LaJoie

DraftKings NASCAR Picks for the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte

Brad Keselowski at Michigan International Speedway
Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images

Cash Game Plays (Safe)

Kyle Larson ($11,300) – Larson hit the wall hard in practice on Saturday evening, and while he didn’t destroy his car and force his team to get the backup car out, he wasn’t able to make a qualifying lap so he’ll start back in 36th. This season, we’re not seeing the dominant Kyle Larson from last year, but he’s still a consistent top 5 threat and good for 10-20 fastest laps on a regular basis. He had the fastest single lap in practice this weekend and the 2nd-best five-lap average.

Brad Keselowski ($6,600) – I hate writing up Keselowski this season, especially as a cash game play, but I don’t think you can pass up this extremely low salary and his 35th-place starting spot. Kez has finished in the teens for most of the races this season, and if he does that again on Sunday night, he’s going to easily hit value at this price point. That chalk tastes good, doesn’t it? I hate these weeks.

Corey LaJoie ($4,900) – LaJoie would’ve likely been a cash game write-up even before qualifying since DraftKings decided to price him with the back markers this week, but with LaJoie now starting in the dead last position of 37th, it’s going to be extremely hard to build lineups without including him. When he hasn’t had issues in races this year, Mr. Stacking Pennies has actually been a top 20 finisher in a lot of races. It’d be very surprising if LaJoie isn’t in the optimal lineup on Sunday.

Tournament Plays (Risky)

Kyle Busch ($11,100) – It’s not extremely comfortable building a lineup with both Kyle Larson and Kyle Busch in it since they’re the two highest-priced drivers on the slate, but it could end up being the winning move. There’s obviously a strategy move open here to pivot off of Larson to Busch, but I actually like playing both together. Denny Hamlin is on the pole for Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600, but Kyle Busch has higher dominating potential, plus a little bit of place differential room since he starts back in 4th. At similar tracks this year, Rowdy has been in the top 5 in fastest laps in most of them, and Charlotte is a great track for Kyle Busch, as he has five finishes of 4th or better in the last seven races here.

Ross Chastain ($9,800) – Could Chastain be classified as a cash game play for the Coke 600? In some people’s minds, absolutely. Do I care that I’m classifying him as a tournament play on Sunday? Absolutely not. These super chalky weeks just make things frustratingly weird, so anything goes. Anyway, Chastain is Chastain. We know he’s going to have a fast car like he does every week, and he starts back in 22nd so he has place differential potential, too. Like Kyle Busch, Chastain has been a fastest lap machine on similar tracks this season and Sunday night at Charlotte should be no different.

Chris Buescher ($6,700) – If you’re looking to pivot off of Brad Keselowski ($6,600), I really like his teammate, Chris Buescher, who starts 19th. Buescher is quietly putting together reliable finishes on a weekly basis, including results of 16th or better in five of the last six. And here at Charlotte, Buescher has three top 10s in the last four races, although those were, of course in a different car. Still, a 12th-place finish out of Buescher on Sunday night gets you 38 DraftKings FPTS, and for Keselowski to match that he needs a 20th-place finish from his 35th-place starting spot.

Stacking Dennys Podcast with Jordan & RotoDoc

Charlotte Coke 600 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.

DriverDK SalaryAvg Proj FPTSProj OwnStarting PositionAvg. Projected FinishDollar Per FPT
Kyle Larson$11,30079.2360.89%3606.7$143
Kyle Busch$11,10071.2023.78%403.7$156
Martin Truex Jr$10,20064.9527.47%1406.0$157
William Byron$10,00064.2323.87%505.7$156
Ross Chastain$9,80060.6331.41%2207.3$162
Denny Hamlin$10,50059.1026.12%106.5$178
Chase Elliott$10,70054.9525.51%1309.7$195
Tyler Reddick$9,60049.8717.63%710.5$193
Christopher Bell$8,40045.5512.88%307.3$184
Alex Bowman$9,30043.9713.77%909.0$212
Joey Logano$8,90043.2716.26%2313.7$206
Ryan Blaney$9,10042.9214.80%1109.3$212
Kurt Busch$8,60040.9818.84%211.5$210
Ricky Stenhouse Jr$7,40039.0222.27%2917.3$190
Erik Jones$7,60037.4715.48%2516.2$203
Brad Keselowski$6,60032.6338.26%3523.5$202
Bubba Wallace$6,90032.605.84%713.0$212
Austin Cindric$7,10023.305.29%614.3$305
Aric Almirola$6,50023.1215.65%2421.8$281
Kevin Harvick$8,00021.359.76%1819.3$375
Corey Lajoie$4,90021.3346.49%3728.3$230
Austin Dillon$8,20019.409.44%1620.5$423
Justin Haley$6,30018.679.17%2022.2$338
Ty Dillon$5,40018.678.37%2826.5$289
Chris Buescher$6,70016.5714.28%1923.3$404
Daniel Suarez$7,80016.428.07%1220.2$475
Chase Briscoe$7,20016.238.51%1520.7$444
Todd Gilliland$5,00014.3315.54%3028.5$349
Noah Gragson$6,00014.1710.72%2727.8$424
Cole Custer$6,20013.458.43%2125.7$461
Ryan Preece$5,20012.679.79%2626.7$411
Michael McDowell$5,80011.954.97%1021.3$485
Harrison Burton$6,10008.837.33%1725.8$691
Cody Ware$4,50006.833.14%3333.8$659
Kaz Grala$5,60005.176.61%3434.7$1,084
BJ McLeod$4,60004.501.68%3134.3$1,022
Josh Bilicki$4,80004.001.68%3234.5$1,200
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.