Fantasy Live Picks for Chicago

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The Cup Series will go road course racing in the streets of Chicago this weekend. This is race No. 21 on the schedule. That means there are only seven races left in the regular season. The win by Joey Logano last week really changed the playoffs point standings. The racing is going to heat up over the summer as the drivers fight for their spot in the 2024 playoffs. It all starts this week with the Grant Park 165 in Chicago.

The picks last week performed about the same at Nashville that they did in New Hampshire. The drivers dominated the first two Stages and then everything went to shit in the final Stage. The Stage Points saved the lineup. The picks entered the race ranked No. 66 in the overall standings and ended the race No. 59 in the standings. As long as the picks keep climbing to the top of the overall leaderboard in the Fantasy Live game, I am happy. I will do my best to get our picks inside the top-50 after Sunday’s race.

 

 

CUP SERIES PRACTICE

The Cup Series teams were able to get some track time to shake down their cars for the Grant Park 165 and then they lined up for qualifying. The street course in Chicago is too long for the drivers to make many long-runs in practice, so we will have to focus our picks on the driver’s history on road courses, their performance at Chicago last year and the single lap speeds from Saturday’s practice.

Here are the practice speeds for the Grant Park 165…

 

 

FANTASY LIVE PICKS FOR CHICAGO

SHANE VAN GISBERGEN (10): SVG will be in the No. 16 car for Kaulig Racing this weekend. He is back to defend his win last year. SVG really put on a show on the streets of Chicago last year. He has a lot of experience on these types of tracks. SVG posted the second-fastest speed in practice and qualified fifth for the race. SVG is the “free square” in the Fantasy Live game this weekend.

CHRISTOPHER BELL (2): Shane van Gisbergen got all of the praise for winning the Grant Park 165 last year, but I can make an argument that he wasn’t the best driver in the race. Bell qualified fourth, won both Stages and led 34 laps. Bell had a nine second lead over second place at one time in the race. That is crazy! The only thing that kept Bell from totally dominating the race in Chicago last year was NASCAR’s decision to shorten the race after Bell gave up all of his track position to pit for fuel. Bell looks extremely fast again this weekend. I will use Bell this week and hope he can add another win sticker to his car.

TYLER REDDICK (3): There is no doubt that Reddick is one of the best road course drivers in the Cup Series. He looked really good at Chicago last year. Reddick qualified second, finished second in Stage 1, third in Stage 2, but was the victim on NASCAR shortening the race after the No. 45 car completed their pit stop. Reddick looks fast again this weekend. I will take a chance with Reddick in the streets of Chicago.

TY GIBBS (7): Gibbs started 12th, led one lap, finished ninth in Stage 1, sixth in Stage 2 and ninth in the race at Chicago last year. Gibbs also finished three of his last four road course races in the top-five. I know it is tough to trust Gibbs to run an entire race without any mistakes, but I cannot fade the No. 54 car from the front row.

MICHAEL MCDOWELL (9): McDowell looked really good in the streets of Chicago last year. He qualified sixth, finished fifth in both Stages and finished seventh in the race. McDowell won on the road course in Indy last year and he finished second at Sonoma last month. He is no stranger to running up front on the road courses, so I will use the No. 34 car Sunday.

(GARAGE PICK) DANIEL SUAREZ (10): Suarez has been a hit or miss driver on the raod courses. He won at Sonoma in 2022, so he has the talent to run up front at these tracks. Suarez posted the fourth-fastest speed in practice and qualified ninth for the race. Suarez scored 10 Stage Points and ran most of the race in the top-10 at Chicago last year. I will have My Amigo in the Garage and an insurance policy Sunday.

* I would love to use KYLE LARSON from the pole, but I only have two allocations left with Larson. I need to save them for Michigan and Darlington. You can use Larson if you have three allocations left with the No. 5 car. You can then move TY GIBBS to the Garage and take DANIEL SUAREZ out of the lineup.

 

Good luck and be sure to follow me on X (Twitter) @MrFantasyNASCARI will send out a Tweet during the race to let you know if I plan to swap out one of my drivers for my Garage pick.