We’re back to The Monster Mile on Sunday for the Drydene 311…again! Yes, they used the same race title for both events this weekend. Anyway, the top 20 finishers from Saturday were inverted to set the top 20 starting spots for Sunday, and then 21st through 40th were set by NASCAR’s new weighted formula. The teams have to use the same cars in both of these races unless they get approval from NASCAR to pull a backup car out, which means we have a very good idea of which ones will be the fastest on Sunday. If you need the starting lineup, click here.
*Please note: the picks and suggestions below are my opinions and strategy for the Slingshot Fantasy Auto Contest. These are not meant to sway your thinking in any way, but rather give you insight into the drivers I am most likely to pick on race day.*
Slingshot Fantasy Auto Contest Picks for Dover Sunday
Denny Hamlin ($12,400) – Just a no-brainer here. Denny Hamlin had the best car, by far, on Saturday. Now he will start from back in 20th on Sunday, giving him a bunch of place differential potential as well as winning potential again. This season, Denny has been great in double-header races, taking the win at the second Darlington, finishing 2nd at Charlotte, winning at Pocono, and finishing 2nd at Michigan. Looking specifically at Dover, Hamlin has now led 333 laps over the last two races. The only reason you wouldn’t want to have Hamlin in your Slingshot lineup on Sunday is if you’re hoping he wrecks, which with how tame Saturday’s race was, isn’t likely.
Chase Elliott ($12,200) – I’ll tell you what, Chase Elliott’s 5th-place finish on Saturday was impressive. We’ll have to keep an eye on if this #9 team will make any unapproved adjustments before Sunday’s race and have to start from the rear, but it that doesn’t happen, I see no reason why Chase can’t challenge for another top 5 finish on Sunday. And honestly he probably could even starting from the rear, if that happens. Elliott now has seven top 5 finishes in nine career starts at “The Monster Mile” and should put up a huge score in the Slingshot Fantasy Auto Contest on Sunday.
Kyle Busch ($11,600) – Finally the bad luck bug didn’t hit Kyle Busch! With his 3rd-place finish on Saturday, Rowdy will now start from 18th for Sunday’s race, which makes his upside a no-brainer here in the Slingshot Fantasy Auto Contest. Late in the first race of this weekend, Rowdy had one of the better cars, and this #18 team seems to be faster once they get a race under their belts at a particular track this season. At worst, Kyle Busch should be a top 5 contender for Sunday’s race. He has now finished 3rd or better in four of the last ten races at Dover, and 10th or better in all but three.
William Byron ($8,400) – The #24 team tried to play fuel strategy on a race that had barely any cautions, and it didn’t work out for them. Byron ended up finishing 28th and now it’s very possible that he misses the Playoffs this year. In other words, this team needs a good run here on Sunday. The good news is that Willy B is actually pretty good at Dover, with three finishes of 14th or better in his five career starts here along with an overall average finish of 16.4. Another option in this price range is Christopher Bell ($8,300), who ranked 19th in Green Flag Speed compared to Byron’s 23rd on Saturday. I’m indifferent, personally. They both have the same upside to me.
Josh Bilicki ($5,200) – Here’s my dud. Bilicki isn’t going to kill my lineup if he wrecks on Sunday since he starts so far back, and he might be able to put up 20+ points if he does well. I’m just rolling the dice here so I can afford the guys up top that will put up huge scores. For what it’s worth, Bilicki finished 32nd in Saturday’s race, which was 2nd-best of the back marker cars (Yeley was the best in 31st, as usual). In his last three starts in this #53 Chevrolet, Josh Bilicki has posted finishes of 32nd, 25th, and 31st.
NOTE: If I convince myself I need to have Martin Truex, Jr. ($12,600) in my lineup sinc ehe has finished 4th or better in seven of the last eight Dover races, I’ll likely switch out Chase Elliott for Truex and then swap Bilicki with Timmy Hill ($5,000), or swap Elliott with Truex and go with Bell and Joey Gase ($5,100) instead.