Fantasy NASCAR Preview for Kentucky


The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series will compete at Kentucky Speedway this week in the Quaker State 400. This will be the seventh race of the season on a 1.5-mile track. The same drivers who have been dominating the previous six intermediate track races should be up front this week.  The race can be seen Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Net.

The MENCS will have another unique schedule this week. They will squeeze two practices and qualifying into one day. The first practice will be at noon Friday, followed by final practice at 2 pm ET. Qualifying will be at 6:40 pm ET on NBC Sports Network.

The last race at Kentucky was dominated by two drivers. Kyle Busch won the pole and led 112 laps. He was trying to become the first driver ever to win an Xfinity Series and MENCS race on the same day. Martin Truex Jr. took the lead from Busch with 27 laps left in Stage 2. The No. 78 ran away from the feld and won his third race of the season.

Race Rewind at Kentucky: Quaker State 400 (2017)

Kentucky Speedway was repaved in 2016. They added banking to turns 1 and 2 but they left turns 3 and 4 alone. The track is not as bumpy as it once was but the narrow entrance to turn 3 makes this is a tricky tack to navigate. The cars that unload with a lot of speed Friday should be able to carry that speed into the race Saturday night.


DraftKings NASCAR Preview

There are 267 laps the race this week. That means there will be 133.5 points available for fastest laps and 66.75 points available for laps led. The trend at Kentucky is to have one driver score 60 fastest laps, another to score 40 and two drivers score 20. The rest of the fastest laps are usually spread out between 18 drivers. The trend for laps led is to have 1 driver lead over 100 laps and another driver leading over 70 laps. The remaining 97 laps are usually spread between 4 drivers. It will be very important to have at least two dominators in your lineup this week and if you hit on the two who lead the most laps you will easily cash in Saturday night.

The drivers I expect to be the top dominators this week are: Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr.

The drivers who could be the top value picks for the race Sunday include: Clint Bowyer, Kurt Busch, Aric Almirola, Erik Jones and Jamie McMurray

The drivers I expect to be the best cheap drivers for the race Sunday include: Kasey Kahne, William Byron, Chris Buescher, Darrell Wallace Jr. and Trevor Bayne


Top 15 DraftKings Drivers in Last 3 Races at Kentucky


Avg. Finish Pos. Laps Led DK Points

1. Kyle Busch

6 275


2. Martin Truex Jr.

9.3 198 72

3. Kevin Harvick

8.7 128


4. Erik Jones

5.5 0 48.5

5. Brad Keselowski

15.3 137


6. Denny Hamlin

7.3 13 42

7. Darrell Wallace Jr.

11 0


8. Ryan Newman

15 2 37.75

9. Jamie McMurray

9.3 0


10. Kyle Larson

18.7 22 35

11. Aric Almirola

16 0


12. Clint Bowyer

18.3 0 31

13. David Ragan

21.3 2


14. Paul Menard

18 0 28

15. Kurt Busch

14.7 10



I will post my final DraftKings picks Saturday morning.


Fantasy Live Preview

I was really worried about my Fantasy Live picks at Daytona. It is really tough to make it through that race without having drivers caught up in a wreck. 34 of the 40 drivers were involved in some sort of wreck last week. Luckily the damage was not too bad for my team. My picks are ranked 77th out of nearly 400,000 entries. It is time to use our best drivers since the 1.5-mile tracks are very predictable. I expect to be close to the top 50 by the end of the race Saturday night.

*Pick for the Pole*: Our pick for the pole needs to be in before qualifying at 6:30 p.m. ET Friday. My pick for the pole will be posted after the final practice Friday (3 p.m. ET) on the front page of this website.

**Garage Driver:  I have been doing my best to keep everyone informed by using my Twitter account @MrFantasyNASCAR. I will do it again Saturday night so make sure you follow me and get all of the information about the cars as I scan the drivers throughout the race.

There are 8 races left in the Fantasy Live regular season. Three of the races (Kentucky, Michigan and Darlington) are on intermediate tracks. It would be a good idea to use your best drivers at these tracks since they tend to be more predictable than the short tracks, Pocono or Watkins Glen.

Here are the drivers I have penciled in right now…


5 Starting Drivers

Kevin Harvick (2): How can you go wrong with Harvick. He has three wins on the 1.5-mile tracks (Atlanta, Las Vegas and Kansas) and has led 600 laps. Harvick has finished every race in the top 3 other than Charlotte (He was in 3rd-place when his tire went down and sent the No. 4 car into the wall). Harvick has never finished worse than 9th at Kentucky since joining Stewart-Haas Racing in 2014. This is a good week to use an allocation with Harvick.

Kyle Busch (3): Busch is my pick to win Saturday night. He has won the last two races on the 1.5-mile tracks (Charlotte and Chicago) and he has two wins at Kentucky on his resume (2011 and 2015). Busch has a series-best 5.14 average finishing position in his seven races at the track. His worst ever finish at Kentucky is 12th.

Martin Truex Jr. (3): Truex enters the race Saturday night as the defending race winner and he has more momentum than any other driver in the sport. Truex has an average finishing position of 4.2 in the last seven races. That includes two trips to Victory Lane and three finishes in second-place. The No. 78 team has recaptured their 2017 form and Truex will be a series threat to win the race Saturday night.

Kyle Larson (4): Larson has been the best driver behind the Big Three (Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr.) on the 1.5-mile tracks. He has finished 5 of the 6 races in the top 9. Larson finished 3rd at Las Vegas and 2nd at Chicago two weeks ago. Larson lead a race high 101 laps and finished 4th at Kansas. He finished 2nd at Kentucky last year and he should finish in the top-5 Saturday night.

Erik Jones (7): Jones will enter the race Saturday night with a lot of momentum. People often say, “The hardest race to win in NASCAR is your first race.” Jones has the talent to win multiple races and maybe getting to Victory Lane for the first time will give him the extra boost he needs to finish up front each week. Jones has only competed in on MENCS race at Kentucky and he finished sixth. He also has three finishes in the top five at Kentucky in the Xfinity Series. Jones has an average finishing position of 9.2 on the 1.5-mile tracks this season. I plan to use Jones this week to save an allocation with my other top drivers (Joey Logano, Kurt Busch, Brad Keselowski and Denny Hamlin).


Garage Driver

I plan to have Brad Keselowski (5) in the garage this week. There have only been 7 races at Kentucky Speedway and Keselowski has won 3 of them. He has led the 2nd-most laps (483) at the track and Keselowski has a series-best 137.7 driver rating at the track. If the No. 2 car shows up with any speed Friday, Keselowski will be in my starting lineup.


Bonus Picks

My Bonus Picks will be updated after I see the cars on the track this weekend. Here are my thoughts right now…

Pick for the Pole: Kyle Busch

Stage 1 Winner: Kyle Busch

Stage 2 Winner: Kevin Harvick

Race Winner: Kyle Busch

Winning Manufacturer: Toyota



Fantrax Bronze Point Salary Cap Game Preview

This is my first year making picks for the Fantrax Bronze Point Salary Cap Game and lately I have looked like a rookie. My pick sure look good on paper and most of my drivers run well in the race. It is the end of the race where everything goes south. Sooner or later my luck will turn around. The season is only half complete so I am not giving up now.

I will evaluate the drivers on this team during the practice sessions this week and try to get as much information as possible to help us win. Here is the lineup I have “penciled in” right now…

Kevin Harvick

Martin Truex Jr.

Kyle Busch

Kurt Busch

Clint Bowyer

Ryan Blaney

Paul Menard

Aric Almirola

Alex Bowman

William Byron


*Stats from and career stats from Racing-Reference.Info


If you need any further advice with your team, look for me on Twitter @MrFantasyNASCAR

If you like Fantasy NASCAR, LIKE my Fantasy NASCAR Tips Page on Facebook