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DraftKings NASCAR Truck Series Picks | NextEra Energy 250

Nascar DFS Trucks

DraftKings NASCAR Truck Series Picks | NextEra Energy 250

Tonight, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will kick off its season under on the lights on the high banks of Daytona International Speedway. After a 3-month offseason and several driver/team changes, one fact remains the same: This series will bring the chaos, especially at a superspeedway like Daytona.

When constructing lineups for races at superspeedways, ‘stacking the back’ of the field is a common mantra given throughout the industry. Drivers in this range have more place differential upside and consequently the ability to outscore a driver who starts in the top 10 and stays there. Given the amount of carnage at Daytona taking out several frontrunners most of the time, these drivers yield huge Draftkings performances, thus becoming great cash game plays.

While this is good guidance, it means nothing without context. How far back should the stacking start? Should only good teams be included? Can drivers starting closer to the front be rostered and still have DFS success? Though the past is not necessarily indicative of the future, a deeper dive into previous trends in this series can help answer these questions and more.

Lineup Construction

Over the past four races at Daytona and Talladega, no driver starting in the top 10 has made the optimal lineup. Unless the race has no wrecks, there is a very slim pathway for them to score enough points to do so. There are limited dominator points (from laps led and fastest laps) available, and the amount of variance associated with superspeedway races makes these drivers risky GPP plays.

Across those same four optimal lineups, each left over $5,000 in salary on the table! This is rare on most DraftKings slates across all sports and can feel uncomfortable when building. Most of the drivers starting near the back are usually in slower trucks; however, they also have the greatest access to a strong finish and DK performance due to place differential gained when wrecks occur.

In the past two years on super speedways, optimal lineups have featured 4+ drivers starting 20th or worse. In fact, of the 84 drivers with a top 6 DraftKings score at Daytona or Talladega since 2015, 52 drivers (61.9%) started 20th or worse. On the other hand, those starting in the top 10 had a top 6 DFS score 14.3% of the time. Taking into account these trends, here are the picks for tonight’s race.

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High-Priced Picks

Matt DiBenedetto ($10,300) – Matty D is new to the Truck Series this season, but his experience in the Cup Series should serve him well. He ran well consistently at the super speedways in Cup and should be a contender for a top 5 if he can avoid wrecks.

Ben Rhodes ($9,700) – The defending series and race champion will be starting further back than expected after a poor qualifying effort. Rhodes has 2 top 10s in his 6 Daytona starts. His truck has speed as evidenced by his 7th ranked average practice speed and teammates starting in the top 10.

Mid-Priced Picks

Derek Kraus ($7,600) – Kraus had a rough 2021 season after a mercurial rise in 2020. He did finish 4th at Daytona in 2020, so he has the ability to succeed if he’s not hit with carnage. Starting 30th, he’s a prime target for place differential.

Hailie Deegan ($6,900) – Deegan had an up-and-down rookie year, but she’s expected to take a leap this year. In 2021, she ranked top 5 in laps completed, signifying an ability to avoid wrecks. She also ranked 1st in average practice speed. It helps that she has arguably the best superspeedway spotter in the series, TJ Majors, who helped Dale Earnhardt, Jr. among others have success at Daytona.

Value Picks

Danny Bohn ($5,500) – Bohn finished 17th here last year and 8th at Talladega. Now, he has switched teams and will be racing for Young Motorsports. Though their equipment is subpar most weeks, they tend to fare well at superspeedways as evidenced by long shot wins from Tate Fogleman and Spencer Boyd in recent years.

Jason White ($4,700) – White is a name that only seems to appear at super speedways. He has multiple top 20 finishes in the Xfinity Series at this track type, in addition to finishing 20th and 10th here in the Truck Series. He does try to mix it up a little more than some of the others starting near the back, but somehow, he tends to miss the wrecks.

Final Lap

Superspeedway racing can be very tilting when it comes to NASCAR DFS. In no other sport can a player (driver) go from the most DK points to the least in an instant. Just sit back, relax, and enjoy the race! We’ll see you in victory lane!

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