By Matthew Sallows
As we head into Championship week at Phoenix Raceway, we will have to look at drivers’ stats and history from this course and other similar courses as we build our lineup this week. This week we are going to focus on finding value by looking at previous top contenders at Phoenix the past couple of years. There are quite a few value drivers that you can insert into your lineup. Let’s now take a deep dive into who I think you can insert into your lineup for the Desert Diamond Casino West Valley 200 at Phoenix Raceway.
Past Winners/Track Knowledge
It’s time for the NASCARs Xfinity Series to take their best shot winning at Phoenix Raceway for the second time this year. The Xfinity Series raced at Phoenix earlier this year where Austin Cindric left victorious. It was his second straight win at the track after winning the championship at Phoenix last year. This will be a 200-mile race where the drivers will be tasked with completing 200 laps around the Raceway. Phoenix raceway is a One-mile Raceway, with an asphalt surface. This raceway is home to 4 turns that will push drivers to the limit. The best part about Phoenix is that no part of the track is off limits, and it is not uncommon to see three, four, or even five wide racing at this Raceway. With Phoenix being a tricky track with a history there is a lot of data to sift through as we build out winning lineup.
A big piece of information that is critical for this race when choosing your line up is that history shows that in the Championship race the race has been won by one of the final four drivers in all series. Plan accordingly.
Below is a lineup that we believe can provide the best value for the Desert Diamond Casino West Valley 200 at Phoenix Raceway on 11/07/2021 (DraftKings Values)
|Driver #1||Austin Cindric||$ 11,000|
|Driver #2||AJ Allmendinger||$ 10,200|
A-List Premium Price Drivers
Austin Cindric ($11,000)
As the current top driver in the Xfinity Series, Austin Cindric is a no brainer every week if you can find a way to fit him into your lineup. This is one of those weeks where I am going to do it no matter what, he is not that pricey which makes him well worth it. Cindric has been excellent in 2021 where he has five wins, 21 top-five finishes, 25 top 10 finishes, and has led 1037 laps. All his statistics this year are Xfinity Series highs. His worst finish this year is 39th at Daytona, but we will forget about that one for now. Pair that with the fact that Cindric has placed top 15 in every race that he finished except for one. It is safe to say he has been electric. Cindric has dominated everywhere this year and is the winner of the last two races at Phoenix. Cindric is going to be moving up to the Cup Series next year, he has his sights set on loading up on Xfinity Series wins before he makes the jump. Cindric is the best driver with the best car, I say he wins this one and leads a ton of laps.
AJ Allmendinger ($10,200)
In his first full time season in the Xfinity Series, AJ Allmendinger has been excellent. In 32 races Allmendinger has five wins, 18 top five finishes, 22 top 10 finishes, and has led 422 laps. Which is better than he had in 2020 in the Xfinity Series where he had two wins, six top five finishes, eight top 10 finishes and led 210 laps in 11 races. If Cindric has been the best this year, Allmendinger is a very close second. I think between the two, this lineup is in for a lot of laps led. Allmendinger seems like a sure bet to be in the running this weekend, especially after how well he has raced this year. I think Allmendinger is almost a sure bet to be in it at the end. Try everything you can to fit both Cindric and Allmendinger into your lineup this weekend. I would bet that one of them walks drives their way into a championship Saturday night.
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B-List Value Drivers
Jeremy Clements ($7,600)
Driving the Number 51 Chevrolet Camaro for JC Racing, Jeremy Clements comes into this race poised to add another top 10 finish to his racing career. In the 2020 season, Clements finished with one top-five finish, five top 10 finishes, and led 12 laps. Clements got his first and only career Xfinity win in 2017 at Elkhart Lake. So far in 2021 Clements has eight top 10 finishes at the Daytona Road Course, Homestead-Miami, Phoenix, Darlington, Charlotte, Atlanta, Darlington, and Martinsville. Clements has finished top 20 in all races but nine this year. This is a very sneaky high potential pick this week that could pay huge dividends. And especially for this low cost.
Brandon Brown ($7,300)
Before the start of this season Brandon Brown only had one top-five finish and seven top 10 finishes to his name on the Xfinity Series. Now after a hot start to the 2021 season Brown has matched his career performance in 32 races. So far, this year Brown has one-win at Talladega, three top-five finishes, and nine top 10 finishes. This may even be in the realm of a safe pick this week especially for his dollar value. He is driving well and could be in for a top 10 finish again this week. I don’t think you can go wrong with Brown in your lineup this week. Brown offers a lot of flexibility with his price tag.
C-List Sleeper Pick Drivers
Ryan Sieg ($7,000)
Driving the Number 39 for his family-owned RSS Racing, Ryan Sieg had his best season to date in 2020 where he had seven top five finishes, 11 top 10 finishes, and qualified for the playoffs in the meantime. So far in 2021 Sieg has not quite had as good of a season but he does have two top five finishes and seven top 10 finishes so far. If he can go on a hot streak this year, there is no reason why he cannot get close to his 2020 totals. Sieg will likely start this race in the middle, which by itself makes him eligible for point differential points. Look at Sieg as a sleeper this week. A good starting position and a great price.
JJ Yeley ($6,200)
Here is a great sleeper pick in the Xfinity Series this week, I like where JJ Yeley stands coming into this race. Yeley spent the 2020 season and most of the 2019 and 2018 seasons racing in the cup series. In 15 races in 2021 Yeley has turned in four top 15 place finishes, which considering he has started 30th plus in almost all races, his DFS numbers are pretty good. For us fantasy folks he has averages 32.2 fantasy points per race, which is very appealing, especially at his price point this week, which is mid value. Look for Yeley to be in for a lot of place differential points.
Now go win your matchup and let us know how you did.
Or if I picked every driver that will be in that lap 199 crash, I encourage you to let me hear it.
Either way come find us on Twitter (@FantasyDFSX).
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