Well, if you missed qualifying here at Kansas Speedway on Friday, it might’ve been the weirdest session we’ve had all season–and that’s saying something. Clint Bowyer, Matt Kenseth, Kasey Kahne, Michael McDowell, Matt DiBenedetto, and Timmy Hill all failed to post a lap, so they’ll all be starting in the back of the field. Then, in the second round, Kyle Larson spun coming off of turn four, and while his official qualifying position is 22nd, he’ll start from the back as well, as the #42 team will definitely change the tires on that car. Additionally, Jimmie Johnson didn’t feel comfortable enough to make another lap in that second round, so he qualified 23rd, and Jamie McMurray’s team couldn’t get the car fired, so he qualified 24th. Like I said…weird! Now let’s get to the FanDuel picks.
FanDuel Strategy Driver Targets at Kansas
Kevin Harvick ($13,500) – I’m hoping that Kevin Harvick’s super-high salary and the fact that he’s starting on the pole will keep his ownership percentage relatively low in FanDuel on Saturday night, because the #4 Ford is the class of the field by a mile. Just to put it into perspective, Harvick had Ryan Blaney (who qualified 2nd) covered by one-and-a-half tenths in qualifying, and then he was interviewed about it and said he didn’t get everything out of the car on that lap. Um, really? Looking at the two most recent races at 1.5-mile tracks this season, Harvick led 214 laps and won at Las Vegas and then led 87 laps and finished 2nd at Texas. His performance here at Kansas on Saturday night should be closer to the former than the latter. I’d be shocked if Harvick didn’t lead the most laps in this year’s KC Masterpiece 400, and the only way he’s not going to challenge for the win (or just simply dominate again) is if something catastrophic happens.
Clint Bowyer ($10,200) – Clint Bowyer was noticeably frustrated that he wasn’t able to make a qualifying run on Friday, and for good reason: he’s got a super fast race car this weekend at his home track. Officially, Clint will start back in 33rd for Saturday night’s KC Masterpiece 400, but as long as he doesn’t run into any issues making his way through the field, the #14 Ford should be at least a top 10 car before it’s all said and done. If Bowyer would’ve qualified in the top 10 this weekend I think we’d be talking about him as a top 5 threat, that’s how fast he looked during the practice session on Friday. The good news here is that Bowyer started 30th in this race one year ago and ended up finishing 9th, and he should have a faster car to work with this time around. He’s under-priced in FanDuel once again this weekend, but he’s one of the best picks available.
Chris Buescher ($6,800) – Negative place differential doesn’t hurt as much in FanDuel as it does in DraftKings, so I’m more than willing to take a shot with Chris Buescher as one of my low-dollar guys on Saturday night. I say one of my low-dollar guys simply because it might be worthwhile to look into throwing two sub-$7,000 drivers into your lineup with Michael McDowell ($6,500) and Matt DiBenedetto ($5,800) starting in the back and probably having mid-20s cars. Anyway, going back to Buescher, Kansas is a great track for him, and he actually finished 6th in the fall race here last season. In four career starts he’s never ended up worse than 24th here, and let’s not forget that Buescher finished 15th at both Las Vegas and Texas earlier this year–both 1.5-mile tracks like Kansas. The #37 Chevrolet has been fast ever since the team unloaded it on Friday, and while it’s not smart to call Buescher a sure top 15 threat on Saturday night, that type of finish honestly wouldn’t surprise me.
FanDuel Projections for the Kansas KC Masterpiece 400
The following chart takes into account the very basics: the starting position and the projected finish of each driver. The projected finishes are averaged from five different ranking systems, using both mathematical equations as well as personal rankings. This chart also includes the average projected base points + laps led as well as the dollar per FPT. It assumes that all drivers projected to finish 12th or better will complete all laps, those projected 13th-19th will finish 1.5 laps down, those projected 20th-28th will finish 2.5 laps down, and those projected 29th or worse will finish 5 laps down. You can click the headers below to sort the chart by that attribute. By default it is sorted by average projected FPTS.
|Driver||FanDuel Salary||Avg Proj FPTS||Starting Position||Avg. Projected Finish||Proj Laps Led||Dollar Per FPT|
|Martin Truex Jr.||$12,500||63.7||7||05.8||12||$196|
|Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||$9,000||46.8||16||19.2||0||$193|
|Darrell Wallace Jr.||$7,400||45.0||21||22.0||0||$165|