The Setup – Alsco Uniforms 500
By Tyler Miller

The NASCAR Cup Series will race 500 kilometers at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Wednesday night. This is the second race at the track this week. Chase Elliott handed the win to Brad Keselowski late Sunday night by choosing to pit during the final caution of the race. There were on-track issues for Denny Hamlin and Clint Bowyer as well as a post-race penalty for Jimmie Johnson which impact starting position for Wednesday. Again, there is no practice or qualifying so drivers will line up based on where they finished the Coca-Cola 600 on Sunday night. The top 20 finishers will invert to start on Wednesday (Brad Keselowski will start 20th) and the drivers who finished 21st-40th will start in the position they finished. Notably, Matt Kenseth starts 26th, Denny Hamlin starts 29th, Clint Bowyer starts 39th and Jimmie Johnson starts 40th. Let’s get started

Race Distance: 208 laps (312 miles) Stage 1 ends on lap 55, Stage 2 ends on lap 115.
Lineup Lock 8:00 pm eastern Wednesday

Sunday’s Winner: Brad Keselowski (Started 9th)
Sunday’s Pole Sitter: Kurt Busch (Finished 7th)
2019 Winner Martin Truex Jr. (Started 14th)
2019 Pole Sitter William Byron (Finished 9th)
Past Winners: (Starting Position)
2018: Kyle Busch (1st)
2017 Spring: Austin Dillon (22nd)
2017 Fall: Martin Truex Jr. (17th)
2016 Spring: Martin Truex Jr. 1st)
2016 Fall: Jimmie Johnson (11th)
2015 Spring: Carl Edwards (3rd)
2015 Fall: Joey Logano (3rd)

* Prior to 2017 the Cup Series raced on the oval at Charlotte twice a year. Starting in 2018 the fall date was moved to the ROVAL. Spring races were 600 miles, fall races were 500 miles.

Coca-Cola 600 Recap
What went right?

Victory Lane identified the drivers who finished 3rd, 4th, 6th, 7th, and 8th in Fan Duel Scoring. Kevin Harvick rallied from a mediocre race to finish 6th on the final restart (5th after Johnson’s penalty), Truex led 87 laps and finished 7th, Johnson was credited with a 2nd place finish (which Fan Duel and Draft Kings both paid out for before the 48 failed post-race tech), Kyle Busch performed well but was not dominant, and Aric Almirola was highly owned and performed as expected from a 40th place starting position.

What went wrong?
Other than the Fan Duel scoring issue at the end of the race and both sites paying out before cars cleared post-race tech (I’m curious if that will happen again), I missed on two drivers: Matt Kenseth and Alex Bowman. Kenseth suffered some damage throughout the race and finished in the mid-20s; Bowman had a terrible final restart and faded to a 19th place finish. Luckily I did not play either of them on Fan Duel, and I’m not counting Suarez as a miss because he performed as I expected.

My Fan Duel lineup ended up being Almirola, Suarez, Harvick, Truex, and Johnson which scored 381.7 and cashed in every contest I entered.
Draft Kings was not as successful. I played Harvick, Truex, Kenseth, Almirola, Newman, and Suarez and scored 220.25. That score put me at a loss, though I did cash in some small 3 and 5 player contests.

What Vegas thinks (Opening lines via Penn National Gaming)
Truex is the favorite at 5-1, big jumps by Elliott and Bowman after their performance on Sunday. Brad Keselowski actually falls from 8-1 Sunday to 9-1 Wednesday after winning the race Sunday night. Ryan Blaney and Erik Jones also find themselves on the list after being left off (outside 20-1 odds) for Sunday’s race.

Martin Truex Jr. 5-1
Chase Elliott 11-2
Kyle Busch 7-1
Alex Bowman 15-2
Brad Keselowski 9-1
Kevin Harvick 10-1
Jimmie Johnson 11-1
Joey Logano 11-1
Denny Hamlin 13-1
Ryan Blaney 16-1
William Byron 20-1
Erik Jones 20-1

Driver Ratings Charlotte:
1. Jimmie Johnson 109.0
2. Kyle Busch 107.2
3. Denny Hamlin 94.8
4. Tyler Reddick 94.4
5. Matt Kenseth 93.7
6. Chase Elliott 93.0
7. Martin Truex Jr. 92.5
8. Kevin Harvick 89.9
9. Joey Logano 89.1
10. Kurt Busch 88.0
11. Brad Keselowski 87.9
12. Ryan Blaney 83.1
13. William Byron 80.7
14. Austin Dillon 80.2
15. Christopher Bell 78.5

Average Running Position:
1. Jimmie Johnson 8.156
2. Kyle Busch 9.538
3. Tyler Reddick 9.575
4. Denny Hamlin 11.863
5. Martin Truex Jr. 12.835
6. Joey Logano 13.640
7. Matt Kenseth 13.777
8. Chase Elliott 13.807
9. Brad Keselowski 14.012
10. Kurt Busch 14.514
11. Kevin Harvick 14.930
12. Ryan Blaney 15.276
13. Christopher Bell 15.309
14. Austin Dillon 15.742
15. William Byron 15.929

Laps Led
1. Kyle Busch 1449 (13.7% of all laps run)
2. Jimmie Johnson 1100 (10.4)
3. Martin Truex Jr. 1059 (10.3)
4. Kurt Busch 626 (5.9)
5. Kevin Harvick 540 (5.1)
6. Matt Kenseth 537 (5.3)
7. Denny Hamlin 377 (3.7)
8. Brad Keselowski 316 (4.3)
9. Joey Logano 289 (3.8)
10. Chase Elliott 196 (6.4)
11. Alex Bowman 172 (5.7)
12. Ryan Newman 141 (1.3)
13. Clint Bowyer 119 (1.2)

Sunday’s Top 10

1. Brad Keselowski
2. Chase Elliott
3. Ryan Blaney
4. Kyle Busch
5. Kevin Harvick
6. Martin Truex Jr.
7. Kurt Busch
8. Tyler Reddick
9. Christopher Bell
10. Chris Buescher

2019 Top 10
1. Martin Truex Jr.
2. Joey Logano
3. Kyle Busch
4. Chase Elliott
5. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
6. Chris Buescher
7. Alex Bowman
8. Jimmie Johnson
9. William Byron
10. Kevin Harvick

2018 Top 10
1. Kyle Busch
2. Martin Truex Jr.
3. Denny Hamlin
4. Brad Keselowski
5. Jimmie Johnson
6. Jamie McMurray
7. Kyle Larson
8. Kurt Busch
9. Alex Bowman
10. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

2017 Fall Top 10
1. Martin Truex Jr.
2. Chase Elliott
3. Kevin Harvick
4. Denny Hamlin
5. Jamie McMurray
6. Daniel Suarez
7. Jimmie Johnson
8. Ryan Blaney
9. Kasey Kahne
10. Kyle Larson

2017 Spring Top 10
1. Austin Dillon
2. Kyle Busch
3. Martin Truex Jr.
4. Matt Kenseth
5. Denny Hamlin
6. Kurt Busch
7. Erik Jones
8. Kevin Harvick
9. Ryan Newman
10. Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Fan Duel and Draft Kings took two very different approaches to pricing for Wednesday night’s race. Fan Duel priced drivers as they normally do, Draft Kings priced drivers based on starting position and the potential for differential points.

Jimmie Johnson ($11,200/12,300) Jimmie Johnson is the highest priced driver on Draft Kings, but no matter his price, he needs to be owned on both sites. Jimmie Johnson has a legitimate shot at a top 5 finish and +35 differential.

Denny Hamlin ($12,000/11,200) I don’t expect Denny Hamlin to have issues with tungsten weights falling off of his car Wednesday night. I think he is a strong play from the 29th place starting position, but the combination of his price and the fact that other strong teams are starting near the back makes him tough to roster. Hamlin will be without his crew chief, car chief, and lead race engineer for the next four races as a result of the team’s missteps on Sunday.

Clint Bowyer ($9,000/11,800) I really like Clint Bowyer on Fan Duel Wednesday night. Starting 39th, he is priced up on Draft Kings, but if he can avoid a fluke mechanical failure, he could be looking at +25 differential and a top 15 finish.

Chase Elliott ($13,000/9,700) Chase Elliott is my favorite to win this race. Starting 19th, I like Elliott to get to the front in stage 1 and compete for the lead and the win in the second half of the race. This is a shorter race so leading laps and winning may be less important than differential, but I like Elliott to finish top 3 which would give him at least +16 differential.

Ryan Blaney ($10,400/7,900) Ryan Blaney is starting this race 18th after a strong finish at Charlotte on Sunday. Blaney seemed to come out of nowhere with his strong run in the Coca-Cola 600 and overall team Penske looked good with Keselowski winning and leading 21 laps, Blaney finishing 3rd, and Logano finishing 13th and leading 26 laps. I think Team Penske will be low owned on Wednesday night, and I like Blaney’s chances of another top 5 finish.

Matt Kenseth ($7,600/8,100) Kenseth is in a good spot here and his price is way too low on both sites. Kenseth had a few issues on Sunday night and finished the race 26th which is where he will start on Wednesday. I would expect Kenseth to have a clean race and finish in the top 10 which makes him an excellent play at his price.

Ryan Newman ($7,000/7,500) Everything I said about Kenseth I would repeat for Ryan Newman. I think Newman’s ceiling is lower than Kenseth’s but his lower price makes him a strong play from the 27th place starting position.

Bubba Wallace ($5,000/8,300) I will say right up front that I do not trust Bubba Wallace. He is not typically the type of driver that I want in my DFS lineups, especially when I am building a single entry lineup. However, this is the only scenario where I would see using him, low price (on Fan Duel), short race, and starting 38th. The 43 car had a parts failure on Sunday, if he can stay out of trouble I think a top 20 finish is within the realm of possibility. I like it on Fan Duel because of the near minimum price.

The lineup builds are going to be much different between Fan Duel and Draft Kings but I am going to stick with a core of Johnson, Kenseth, and Elliott on both sites. Good luck to all our subscribers!

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