Fantasy NASCAR Preview for Darlington

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The NASCAR Cup Series will join the Truck Series and Xfinity Series at Darlington Raceway this weekend. Not only is this Mother’s Day weekend, it is also throwback weekend for each series. We will see the cars and trucks wrapped in some iconic paint schemes this weekend. The racing at “The Track Too Tough to Tame” is some of the best on the schedule. Add in the cool paint schemes and we have, what should be an exciting weekend of racing.

 

DARLINGTON SCHEDULE

The Truck Series and Xfinity Series will be on the track Friday afternoon for their practice and qualifying sessions. The truckers will have their 200-mile race Friday night on FS1. The Xfinity Series will compete in their 200-mile race Saturday afternoon on FS1. The Cup Series will practice and qualify Saturday morning for their 400-mile race Sunday afternoon on FS1. We have 800-miles of exciting racing this weekend. It is good to be back at one of NASCAR’s most historic tracks.

Here is the schedule for the races at Darlington…

 

 

RACE RECAP AT DARLINGTON

The Cup Series last raced at Darlington in the playoffs last September. Christopher Bell won the pole for the race. Bell led the first 33 laps, but a 15-second pit stop put Bell deep in the field and he was involved in a wreck at the end of the race. Tyler Reddick hit the wall and bent a toe-link in practice. He was still able to race his way to the front and lead 90 laps, score 16 Stage Points and finished second. Denny Hamlin took over the race at the end of Stage 1. He led 177 laps, won both Stages, but he was involved in a wreck at the end of the race. Kyle Larson ran up front for most of the race, but he did not take over until the middle of the final Stage. Larson led the final 54 laps and went to Victory Lane.

The best drivers in the race were Kyle Larson, Denny Hamlin, Tyler Reddick, William Byron, Brad Keselowski, Chris Buescher, Ryan Blaney and Erik Jones

Stage 1 Results: 1. Denny Hamlin, 2. Tyler Reddick, 3. Kyle Larson, 4. Kevin Harvick, 5. Ryan Blaney, 6. Brad Keselowski, 7. Chase Elliott, 8. Christopher Bell, 9. Chris Buescher, 10. Aric Almirola

Stage 2 Results: 1. Denny Hamlin, 2. Kyle Larson, 3. Erik Jones, 4. Tyler Reddick, 5. William Byron, 6. Kyle Busch, 7. Ryan Blaney, 8. Austin Dillon, 9. Brad Keselowski, 10. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

Click here for highlights of last year’s race: DARLINGTON RACE REWIND

 

 

FANTASY PREVIEW FOR DARLINGTON

Darlington is known as “The Track Too Tough to Tame.” There are drivers who really struggle at Darlington and then there are the drivers who know how to search the tack for grip and ride the wall when it is necessary. William Byron (6.5), Tyler Reddick (7.3) and Joey Logano (8.8) are the only drivers who have a top-10 average finishing position in the four races at Darlington in the Gen-7 car. Denny Hamlin (234), Martin Truex Jr. (221), Kyle Busch (174), Ross Chastain (120) and Kyle Larson (114) have been the best drivers at leading laps in the Gen-7 car at Darlington. I plan to stick to the drivers listed above for my Fantasy NASCAR picks this week. It is hard to ignore the stats for Erik Jones and Ryan Blaney at Darlington. These two drivers will receive consideration too.

 

FANTASY STATS FOR DARLINGTON

Darlington is a unique track. It is a 1.366-mile, egg-shaped track with high-banking (25 degrees in the corners) and a surface that wears out tires fast. The results from the other races do not typically translate into success at Darlington. We see drivers like Erik Jones struggle at other tracks, but come to Darlington and win the race. I am focusing the picks this week on the four races at Darlington in the Gen-7 car.

Here are the top drivers from the four races at the Darlington sorted by Driver Rating…

 

 

EARLY WEEK PICKS FOR DARLINGTON

ONE & DONE PICK: DENNY HAMLIN


DRIVER GROUP GAME PICKS:
KYLE LARSON, DENNY HAMLIN, TYLER REDDICK, JOEY LOGANO, BRAD KESELOWSKI, CHRIS BUESCHER, CARSON HOCEVAR, NOAH GRAGSON

 

FANTASY LIVE PICKS: WILLIAM BYRON, KYLE LARSON, DENNY HAMLIN, TYLER REDDICK, MARTIN TRUEX JR. GARAGE: KYLE BUSCH

* I will update these picks this weekend.

 

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