Superspeedway racing is back for the MENCS. It is not for everyone but the final laps are always exciting. The fireworks on the track will be just as good as the fireworks filling the sky after the race. The Coke Zero 400 can be seen Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. ET on NBC.
There are nine races left in the regular season of the Fantasy Live game. It will be important to save allocations this week but it really depends on how many allocations you have left with your top drivers. There are drivers who perform well on the Superspeedways (Joey Logano, Brad Keselowski, Denny Hamlin, Kurt Busch and Chase Elliott). It is OK to use these drivers if you have 3 or more allocations left. Just be sure to sprinkle in some drivers who perform better on the Superspeedways then on the smaller tracks (Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Alex Bowman, Paul Menard, Michael McDowell and David Ragan).
It is OK to stack manufacturers this week. We saw the Toyotas work together in the Daytona 500 and they finish 1st, 2nd and 3rd. The Chevy’s got their game plan together at Talladega. The Chevy’s finished 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th and 6th at Talladega. I expect the manufacturers to work together Saturday and one brand to dominate the top of the leaderboard at the end of the race.
Fantasy Live Starting Drivers
Joey Logano (4): Logano has been the best driver on the Superspeedways and it is not even close. Logano has finished six of the last seven races on these tracks in the top five. That is outstanding! Qualifying was canceled because of lightning so the No. 22 car will start on the pole and have the No. 1 pit stall. I expect the No. 22 car to lead a lot of laps, score a lot of Stage points and finish in the top 5 again.
Brad Keselowski (3): Keselowski is one of the best drivers on the Superspeedways but he has not had any luck. He has crashed out of four of the last five races. Keselowski sent a message to the field in practice that he is done playing nice. He said he will wreck any car who blocks him because he is tired of lifting and having cars getting into the back of him. Keselowski starts third and I expect the Blue Deuce to lead a lot of laps, score a lot of Stage points and have a great chance to win the race Saturday night.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (8): Stenhouse sure made a lot of the drivers in this race last year. He did everything he could to stay up front, even if it meant spinning out other cars. I really do not care how he drivers as long as he finishes up front and that is usually what happens with Stenhouse at Superspeedways. I will use Stenhouse this week and save my allocations with the top drivers for the more predictable tracks.
Alex Bowman (9): I am playing the hot hand and using an allocation with Bowman Saturday night. Bowman has the second-best driver rating on the Superspeedways and the second-best driver rating at Daytona. He finished 11th in February at Daytona and 2nd at Talladega in April. Bowman has the 3rd best average finishing position in the last six races on the Superspeedways so I will roll the dice with the No. 88 car this week.
Ryan Newman (10): Newman is the safest pick in the field Saturday night. He is absolutely the best driver at staying out of trouble. In the last eight races on the Superspeedways, Newman has completed 1,502 of 1,502 and he has a 9.8 average finishing. Are you kidding me!! In the last 17 races on the Superspeedways Newman has ZERO DNFs!! I hope I did not just jinx him. I will play it safe with Newman this week.
My Garage Driver this week will be Denny Hamlin (4). Hamlin starts 6th Saturday night. He will be close to his teammates Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. I expect the three Joe Gibbs Racing drivers to work together throughout the race to finish first, second and third, just like they did in the Daytona 500. I would like to save my allocation with Hamlin this week, but I need a good driver as an insurance policy Saturday night. The Daytona 500 winner is not a bad choice to have as a backup.
Fantasy Live Picks for Daytona
** Photos from NASCAR Media
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Good luck this week!