As we head into Watkins Glen Race Week, we will have to look at drivers’ stats and history from other 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 road races 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 Go Bowling at the Glen at Watkins Glen International.
Past Winners/Track Knowledge
It’s time for the NASCAR Series to take their best shot winning at Watkins Glenn International. The Cup Series has raced at Watkins Glenn International regularly over the years being one of the road course staples. This will be a 220.86-mile race where the drivers will be tasked with completing 90 laps around the Raceway. Watkins Glenn is a 2.454-mile Road Course, with an asphalt surface. This racecourse is home to eight unique turns that will push drivers to the limit. The best part about Watkins Glenn is that each turn has its own set of challenges that the drivers must overcome. As stage points are becoming more coveted as the year goes on and racers, must win stages to get those oh so valuable stage points, racers will have three stages to try and get points. Stage one is 20 laps, stage two is 20 laps, and stage three is 50 laps. With Watkins Glen being a tricky track with a long history there is a lot of data to sift through as we build out winning lineup.
Below is a lineup that we believe can provide the best value for the Go Bowling at the Glen atWatkins Glenn on 08/07/2021 (DraftKings Values)
|Driver #1||Chase Elliot||$ 10,600|
|Driver #2||Martin Truex Jr||$ 10,400|
A-List Premium Price Drivers
Chase Elliot ($10,600 DK, $14,500 FD)
There is not much to say here. Chase Elliot has dominated road races the last three years. In 12 Cup Series races, Elliot has won seven of them, placed top five in nine, top 10 in 10 races, and has led 317 laps. His laps led total is more than the next two drivers; Martin Truex Jr. (146) and Kyle Larson (121) have combined. Elliot is going to start 11th this week, and this feels like a race where he could lead almost every lap, once he can get to the front, which for Elliot likely won’t take long. Elliot is turning into an elite level driver, but he is already the best road race driver, potentially ever. For me, I will put Elliot in my lineup no matter the cost at a road race. He is expensive but it will be worth your investment. Also, good to keep in mind that Elliot was under a mile away from winning the Busch Clash at the start of the year and won the road race at Circuit of Americas and Road America this year. And that he has won four of the last six road races.
Martin Truex Jr ($10,400 DK, $13,000 FD)
As one of two drivers this year with three or more wins, Martin Truex Jr, is as hot as they come in the Cup Series. Truex has been one of the few dominant drivers this year, along with Denny Hamlin, Alex Bowman, and Kyle Larson, who I also like in this race, but didn’t pick due to value. So far in 2021 Truex has three wins, seven top five finishes, 11 top 10 finishes, and had led 647 laps. It is safe to say that Truex could be as sure of a bet for this week as they come. If he can get to number one and can lead any number of laps, you are in for an elite DFS performance from Truex. Pair all of this with how he has raced on road courses the last three years and you are getting great value even at this price point. In the last three years Truex has two wins, six top five finishes, nine top 10 finishes, and has led a46 laps on road courses. That’s spectacular.
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Denny Hamlin ($9,400 DK, $12,000 FD)
As the current points leader in the series Denny Hamlin is still on the hunt for his first win of the year. Hamlin has been excellent all year except for the win column where he has 11 top five finishes, 15 top 10 finishes, while also leading 771 laps. Hamlin has also been one of the better drivers on road courses the last three years where in 12 races he has five top five finishes, seven top 10 finishes, and has led 33 laps. You can normally count on Hamlin to secure his playoff spot early, now he hasn’t yet as he remains winless, but no one has been better. On DraftKings I would even label Hamlin as a value pick this week as no one is hungrier for a win this year. Just put Hamlin in your lineup and move on.
B-List Value Drivers
Erik Jones ($7,000 DK, $5,500 FD)
In his fifth full time season in the NASCAR Cup Series, Erik Jones is off to an ok start. So far in 2021 he has two top 10 finishes at Las Vegas and the Bristol Dirt Track. The story does change when you look at how Jones has raced at Watkins Glen recently where he has two top five finishes in the last three races. He has been pretty good on road course the last three years where he has, in 12 races three top five finishes, five top 10 finishes, and 10 top 20 finishes. Jones has been right up there in 10 of 12 races. That’s pretty good in my books and especially for dirt cheap this week. Jones starts this race in 22nd so he also offers a lot of point differential potential. Do not sleep on Jones at Watkins Glen.
C-List Sleeper Pick Drivers
Cole Custer ($6,500 DK)
In his rookie season in 2020 Cole Custer was able to get his first career win, which for rookies is not the easiest thing to do. Custer raced on-road tracks twice last year. He did manage a ninth-place finish and finished 13th earlier this year at the Daytona Road Course which is promising for him this week. In the Xfinity Series in 2019 Custer finished fourth and 13th in road races. Now in 2021 Custer has raced on road courses six times in his Cup Series career where he has the one top 10 finish. Custer to me this week is a sleeper due to his price and starting position of 19th. I don’t see why Custer cannot compete for a top 20 finish in this Sunday’s race. He has all the tools to do it.
Corey Lajoie ($5,800 DK, $4,000 FD)
Here is a real deep sleeper this week. Sometimes when you want to start the best two road races, you really need to look deep to find value. Well, here is some great value for this upcoming race. Starting 29th this week, Lajoie is in a great spot to rack up some point differential points. In the last three years on road courses Lajoie has a better finish then start on average. Look for Lajoie to pick up a few spots and continue to rack up points for your team with his average of 20.5 DFS points per race this year.
Now go win your matchup and let us know how you did. Or if I picked every driver that will be in that lap 35 crash, I encourage you to let me hear it. Either way come find us on Twitter (@FantasyDFSX).
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