I’m playing DraftKings this season and will be posting my picks here each week. Disclosure: If you want to play and sign up using this link, DraftKings will give my website a commission. Disclosure No. 2: I might be America’s worst daily fantasy player.
Last race’s results: Played $4 Brake Pad single entry game; finished 50th of 1,500, won $20.
Season results: $30 wagered, $37 won in 11 contests.
This week’s contest: $8 MEGA Beast (with $50,000 to the winner!).
— Kurt Busch ($9,800). He’s had six straight finishes of 12th or better at Sonoma, including four top-five finishes and a win. He starts 17th, so the chance for points gained through position differential — which is going to be huge for fantasy players at Sonoma, given the low number of laps — is very strong.
— Jimmie Johnson ($9,600). Even if Chad Knaus’ setup notes got stolen, Johnson is still excellent at Sonoma (seven top-10s in the last eight races) and the team will probably be on top of the complicated pit strategy. Plus, Johnson starts 24th — a major opportunity for place differential.
— Joey Logano ($9,000). The fact he starts 22nd is very attractive for fantasy players, particularly because this is a strategy race with the stages — and Logano crew chief Todd Gordon is always looking for outside-the-box ways to put his driver in a good spot. Logano has also finished fifth and third the last two races here.
— Kasey Kahne ($8,000). Another play with the position differential opportunity. Kahne starts 21st but has four straight top-10 finishes at Sonoma. Those points could be quite valuable if he can have another good run.
— Matt Kenseth ($7,500). Sonoma is one of Kenseth’s worst tracks and he’s never had a top-five finish here in 17 starts. But he’s starting 38th, and the prospect of even a top-20 finish would provide major points from position differential.
— Michael McDowell ($6,100). The fact he starts 16th is slightly concerning, because there’s a low ceiling for points differential even if he gets a top-10. But the road racing ace comes at a very low price and seems like a better option than Boris Said at $5,100, which was the other option I was considering here.