The MENCS competed at one of its most iconic tracks last week at Darlington and now they will travel to the most historic tracks in all of motorsports, the Brickyard. If Darlington is like Fenway Park in baseball, Indianapolis is like Wrigley Field. Do not expect great racing this week like we saw at the Lady in Black. The Brickyard is long and flat and it was not designed for 3,300 pound stockcars. We will likely see a similar race to what we saw at Pocono this year. It should still be fun to see teams fight for the final playoffs spots. The Big Machine Vodka 400 can be seen Sunday at 2 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Network.
This is the last race of the Fantasy Live regular season. There is no need to save allocations. Do not be the person in your league that ends the season with 2 or 3 allocations left with Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick, Martin Truex Jr. or Joey Logano. If any of the top drivers look fast in practice, get them into your lineups this week because there is no tomorrow.
Starting Drivers for Fantasy Live
Brad Keselowski (1): Keselowski won this race last year and he will have a good chance to do it again. Pit strategy and fuel mileage always comes into play at Indianapolis and that plays right into the hands of the No. 2 team. The 550 HP aero package will bring the draft into play more this year and Keselowski is one of the best at manipulating the air. This is a great week to use Keselowski.
Joey Logano (1): Logano is still looking for his first win at Indianapolis. The race Sunday should be his best chance to kiss the bricks. The 550 HP aero package will make Indianapolis race like a Superspeedway. That means the drivers who are good at Darlington and Talladega should be good Sunday. Logano is the best driver at both tracks. He should be able to use the draft to stay in the top 10 and score a lot of Stage points this week.
Kyle Larson (2): Larson is on a heater right now. He has finished 2nd, 6th, 3rd, 8th and 5th since the middle of July. Larson also finished 5th at Pocono in late July and that should translate into success Sunday. Chip Ganassi is still looking for his first Brickyard 400. The team will bring their best cars to the track this week.
Erik Jones (2): The track that is most similar to Indianapolis is Pocono and the best driver at the Tricky Triangle this season was Jones. He finished 3rd in the June race and 2nd in July. Jones finished 2nd at the Brickyard 400 last year so he knows his way around this track. Jones won last week and he could easily be back in Victory Lane Sunday.
Chase Elliott (1): I had to decide between Ryan Blaney and Chase Elliott for this pick. I trust Elliott more. His past stats at Indianapolis are not great but it wasn’t because of him. Elliott just had bad luck at the Brickyard. This could be a different story Sunday. Elliott liked his car and I think the addition of Jeff Gordon in the garage will help him out this week.
My Garage Driver this week will be Clint Bowyer (2). Bowyer is a hard driver to trust but he ran well last week at Darlington (One of his worst tracks). Bowyer currently sits 8 points above the cut line for the playoffs. The No. 14 team will use pit strategy and fuel strategy to score as many Stage points as possible. He finished 5th in this race last year. I expect a strong run from Bowyer under pressure at the Brickyard.
* Other drivers I really like (in order) are: 1. Kyle Busch (Out of Allocations), Kevin Harvick (Out of Allocations, Kurt Busch (Out of Allocations), Denny Hamlin (Out of allocations), Martin Truex Jr. (Out of allocations) and Ryan Newman.
** If I had unlimited allocations my rankings would be: 1. Kyle Busch, 2. Brad Keselowski, 3. Kurt Busch, 4. Joey Logano, 5. Kyle Larson, 6. Erik Jones, 7. Kevin Harvick, 8. DennyHamlin, 9. Martin Truex Jr., 9. Chase Elliott, 10. Clint Bowyer, 11. Ryan Blaney, 12. Ryan Newman
Fantasy Live Picks for Indianapolis
** Photos from NASCAR Media
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Good luck this week!
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