DraftKings NASCAR DFS Advice: Martinsville
As NASCAR continues to makeup races due to the unexpected two-month lay-off, DFS players will get another opportunity for some NASCAR DFS with another mid-week race! As the Cup Series travels to Martinsville Speedway for a Wednesday night race, it will be the first-ever Cup Series event under the lights since the sport started racing at the track back in 1948!
What should be an exciting race for NASCAR fans, DFS players will again have the challenge of setting lineups knowing that the starting lineup was set by a random draw grouped by owners’ points. With this, there are a few drivers that appear to have clear potential for place differential points. For instance, Jimmie Johnson who will start 21st is the most expensive driver in the contest. However, there are still plenty of good options to target, and of course, drivers you should look to avoid in Wednesday’s DraftKings contest.
Drivers to Target
Denny Hamlin (#11, Joe Gibbs Racing)
DK Price: $11,900
Starting Position: 12th
Denny Hamlin enters Wednesday’s contest with the second-highest salary, but rightfully so. Not only will Hamlin start from the 12th position which will provide the opportunity for place differential points, but he also has the track record to support plugging him in your lineup. Hamlin has led laps in five of the last six races at Martinsville and has just one finish outside the top-12 during the span. He’ll also be looking to pick up his fourth straight top-5 finish at this track, so I expect him to be one of the favorites to bring home the win.
Brad Keselowski (#2, Team Penske)
DK Price: $9.500
Starting Position: 6th
Despite not putting up the finish I was expecting last week, I’m going to target Brad Keselowski once again this week. Keselowski is still priced fairly well, carrying the 8th highest salary among drivers and has had some great success at Martinsville. Similar to Hamlin, Keselowski’s recent history at this track is impressive, scoring a top-5 finish in seven of his last eight races at Martinsville. Keselowski has also found short-track success as of late, picking up the win at Bristol just a few races ago.
Ryan Newman (#6, Roush Fenway Racing)
DK Price: $6,800
Starting Position: 16th
Now, Ryan Newman more than likely won’t be a contest winner for you but should provide nice value in your Wednesday lineup. Newman’s salary is just $6,800, which ranks him 20th among drivers this week. And while Newman hasn’t had the success of Hamlin or Keselowski as of late, he does have an average finish of 13.7 at this track over the past three seasons, which ranks him 9th among active drivers. He should be a solid pick this week.
Ryan Preece (#37, JTG Daugherty Racing)
DK Price: $5,700
Starting Position: 28th
Based on how the starting lineup was set for the race at Martinsville, there aren’t a ton of obvious picks deep in the field that could produce a decent place differential. However, if you are paying up for some of the bigger guns this week, Ryan Preece is a great value at $5,700. Despite only having two Cup Series starts at Martinsville, Preece did finish inside the top-20 both times in 2019 and showed some success at a short-track just a few weeks ago with a 12th place finish at Bristol. He’ll be my favorite value pick of the week.
Drivers to Avoid
Alex Bowman (#88 Hendrick Motorsports)
DK Price: $8,900
Starting Position: 8th
Alex Bowman was definitely one of the early surprises through the first month of the season and looked like he’d pick up right where he left off with a 2nd place finish when the series returned at Darlington. However, since then Bowman has just one finish inside the top-15 over the past six races and historically has not been strong at Martinsville. In his four races with Hendrick Motorsports at Martinsville, Bowman has finished inside the top-10 just once. With the 10th highest salary in the contest, I’d look elsewhere.
Tyler Reddick (#8 Richard Childress Racing)
DK Price: $7,400
Starting Position: 14th
Another young driver that has had a surprisingly strong start to the 2020 season is Tyler Reddick. However, for this week, I might look to avoid the leading Rookie of the Year contender. Reddick is starting from the 14th position, which will cap his place differential upside. Also, Martinsville is one of the few tracks that the Xfinity Series, NASCAR’s AAA series, does not race. So without the benefit of any practice due to NASCAR’s current condensed schedule, Riddick will be hitting the track Sunday turning his first laps at Martinsville since a Truck Series start back in 2016.
Christopher Bell (#95 Leavine Family Racing)
DK Price: $8,200
Starting Position: 32nd
It is clear that Christopher Bell’s price tag for Wednesday’s contest is closely tied to this 32nd place starting position. With the 13th highest salary of the week, Bell will be a popular pick for DFS players looking for easy place differential points. And while I’ll agree, he has a good chance to better his starting position, similar to Tyler Reddick, this will be Bell’s first Cup Series start at Martinsville. For me, the price tag is just too high. Especially when you consider Ryan Blaney, who will roll off from the pole position, is just $200 more and has had great success at Martinsville with top-5 finishes in three of his last four races here.
Austin Dillon (#3 Richard Childress Racing)
DK Price: $6,100
Starting Position: 22nd
Another Richard Childress Racing driver makes the Avoid list this week, but for different reasons than his teammate. Dillon hasn’t had great success at this race track, but with a salary outside the top 24 drivers, he might be someone DFS players look to plug-in. However, be aware that Dillon might be in jeopardy of missing the race this week a he is on baby watch for the birth of his first child. We’ll obviously have an idea closer to the start of the race, but Dillon might end up being unavailable, so keep an eye out.
Even with the mid-week race, the Cup Series will be back next Sunday for a race at Homestead-Miami Speedway, so be sure to check back for another edition of NASCAR DFS advice.