Fourth times the charm for Kyle Larson: after going through three straight weeks of finishing runner-up, he finally cracked it at Charlotte. Beginning the race on pole, Larson showed to be the class of the field from the outset, leading the first 86 laps. Along with sweeping all four stages, Larson racked up 327 of 400 laps. Hendricks teammates William Byron and Chase Elliott were the lone drivers to offer any type of challenge. But to be honest, the No. 5 driver was much too quick for anyone to keep up for long. Consider Elliott was runner-up and still more than 10 seconds slower.
We now leave behind Charlotte and head 42 hours west to Sonoma, California. In the heart of California Wine Country, the Sonoma Raceway is the second road course in the last three Cup Series races. Looking at the track specs for Sonoma Raceway, it is a 2.52-mile asphalt track. Like the Circuit of the Americas, this event will offer its own set of challenges for drivers. Dubbed the “carousel” due to the tracks sweeping downhill corner, it runs through turn four through seven.
This weekend we go from a strategy of securing numerous dominators and focus more on drivers that will need to move up in the field. Of course, you can include a single dominator to fill out the roster. However, the majority of your points are going to need to come mainly from place differential and high finishing position.
This week, the Money Train delves into the DFS options for Sunday’s Cup Series event in Sonoma, CA. I’ve broken down the selections between high salary, mid-range, and value play. Included are player salaries from both FanDuel and DraftKings. Best of luck to everyone with their lineups this weekend.
Martin Truex Jr. (14,000 FD | 10,900 DK)
While Elliott has been the class of the field when we come to the road course events. There’s been one exception to the narrative, and that’s been at Sonoma. Not only has Truex won the last two events at this California road course, but he’s done it in dominating fashion. Having led 121 of 200 laps, he was virtually untouchable. Consider the second closest driver was Kevin Harvick with 35.
Starting 19th, it’s not going to take Truex long before he begins to pick off those higher-positioned drivers. A strong finish among those top four drivers should be enough to earn himself a strong points day. Not sure what’s been going on with Truex since that win at Darlington, as it’s hard to put your finger on. However, if there’s one track where he can break out of this current rut, it’s here at Sonoma.
Joey Logano (11,000 FD | 10,100 DK)
Due to his two prior poor finishes here at Sonoma, Logano might seem like an odd choice for this Sunday. However, he could be a nice diamond in the rough option. Let’s remember that over the last three road course trips, Logano has earned himself a podium finish (he also led a combined 24 laps over the last two races). Like he’s showed at the Bristol Dirt race, Logano is not always going to be the obvious choice.
Coming off the line 13th overall, it offers Logano some nice wiggle room. While other owners decide to stack their rosters with the more favored drivers, consider Logano. If he holds up his end of the bargain and finishes strong, you’re going to be well ahead of the game. At worst, he’s worth an add on to a handful of your lineups.
Kurt Busch (8,500 FD | 9,100 DK)
Arguably the biggest chalk play on the slate for this Sunday given the 30th place qualifying position. That’s on top of his strong history at Sonoma. A winner here in 2011, Busch has continued to pile up strong results at the technical road course ever since. Over the last eight races, he has mustered a worst finish of 13th. Say he finishes with a top-13 result – that’s 17-plus bonus points in the bank alone. Plug Busch into the heart of your roster and just allow him to rack up those points. I’m sure owners feel Busch owes them one from last week, regardless if it was his fault or not. This is his chance to repay the disillusioned.
Ross Chastain (7,000 FD | 7,700 DK)
Of the dark horse performers at Circuit of the Americas, none were more noteworthy than Chip Ganassi driver Chastain (showing quite impressive speed throughout most of the event). On top of securing a season-best finish of fourth, Chastain led four laps. Due to the early mechanical issues last weekend, Chastain qualified just ahead of teammate Busch for Sunday. Not only is he able to supply a team with good point potential as a place differential add but look for him to pick up a few fastest laps as well. Chip has plenty of road course success as a race owner and should supply Chastain with a competitive car.
Michael McDowell (8,000 FD | 7,600 DK)
McDowell has been superb so far this season when it comes to performing at the road courses. Keep in mind that he’s cashed in on a pair of top-eight finishes and has looked strong in doing it. Given McDowell’s rich Open Wheel background, his recent success shouldn’t be all that surprising. Slated to come off the line in 21st position, he shouldn’t have much trouble making inroads as we go further into the event. Consider it was just a couple of weeks ago at the COTA that he came from as deep as 23rd to finish seventh (even led a few laps).
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