As we head into Indy Road Course 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 Pennzoil 150 at the Brickyard at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Past Winners/Track Knowledge
It’s time for the NASCARs Xfinity Series to take their best shot winning at the Indy Road Course. The Xfinity Series raced at the Indy Road Course last year, where Chase Briscoe left victorious and Justin Haley, Noah Gragson, A.J. Allmendinger, and Austin Cindric rounded out the top five. This will be a 151.218-mile race where the drivers will be tasked with completing 62 laps around the Speedway. The Indy Road Course is a 2.439-mile Road Course, with an asphalt surface. This racecourse is home to 14 unique turns that will push drivers to the limit. The best part about the Indy Road Course 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 22 laps. With the Indy Road Course being a tricky track with a 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 Pennzoil 150 at the Brickyard at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on 08/14/2021 (DraftKings Values)
A-List Premium Price Drivers
Austin Cindric ($10,500)
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. Cindric has been excellent in 2021 where he has four wins, 13 top-five finishes, 16 top 10 finishes, and has led 556 laps. All his statistics this year are Xfinity Series highs. His worst finish this year is 32nd at Nashville, but he did crash, so 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. It is safe to say he has been electric. At the end of the day there are not going to be many races this year where you can get Cindric cheap, so you must pick the weeks you want to use him in your lineup, this is one of those weeks. Cindric has dominated everywhere this year. 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. If Cindric starts this race on the pole, he may never leave it.
Ty Gibbs ($10,300)
Winner of last week’s road race at Watkins Glen and the Daytona Road Course, the rookie phenom is back racing in the Xfinity Series again as he continues his historic season. In 10 races this year Ty Gibbs has three wins, finished top five in eight of 10 races, and has led 135 laps. You could argue that no one has been better then Gibbs this season based on his sample size and eight of 10 top five finishes. What’s also wild is that in half the number of races he is tied for third in top five achieved this year. This will be Gibbs first race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on the Road Course but having his first race at a track this year hasn’t seemed to scare him away once. Gibbs is averaging 52.5 DFS points per race, which is out of this world. He is becoming one of those drivers that you must play each week as he is averaging as much as three times some drivers each week. I am going to give the rookie another shot this week.
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Harrison Burton ($9,200)
In year two in the Xfinity Series Harrison Burton had a bit of a rocky start but has really turned the jets on in the last few races. So far in 2021 Burton has seven top five finishes and 13 top 10 finishes, while also leading 131 laps. The trend this year for Burton has been either a top 10 finish or finishing outside of the top 30. In the races he is finishing, he has been excellent, but he needs to be finishing races to be DFS relevant. Road Courses have been Burtons best tracks this year where he has a sixth-place finish at Daytona, a sixth-place finish at Circuit of Americas, a fifth-place finish at Road America, and another fifth place finish at Watkins Glen last weekend. My bet of course is him getting into the top five for this race. As I mentioned earlier 2020 was a good year for Burton where he had four wins, 15 top-five finishes, 22 top 10 finishes, and led 291 laps. Burton is bound to get a win in soon and this could be the week.
B-List Value Drivers
Jeb Burton ($7,700)
I mentioned earlier that I thought there was incredible value in this race, well here is one of the drivers who I think comes extremely cheap for how optimistic I am for their chances to race well this week. Jeb Burton has had an excellent start to the 2021 season where he has one win, five top-five finishes and 12 top 10 finishes. If you take out his 25th place finish at Atlanta 20th place finish at Darlington, and his 32nd place finish at Circuit of Americas his only blunders, he has an average finish this year of around eighth. Now if you want to include every race, you also get a very nice number, of around a top 10 finish. Talk about a great start to the year. Burton has really come into his own this year after finally becoming a full-time driver in the Xfinity Series. Burton is going to have plenty of opportunity to contend for another top-five finish.
Austin Hill ($7,000)
This will be Austin Hill’s third race of the year in the Xfinity Series. Hill is a full-time driver in the NASCAR Truck Series. In two races this year in the Xfinity at Nashville and Pocono Hill has one top 10 finish. In the NASCAR Truck Series Hill is on a hot streak winning the last two races at Knoxville and Watkins Glen. Hill has repeatedly showed that he can race with the best at road courses as evident by his win at Watkins Glen and ninth place finish at Austin. Last week at Watkins Glen, Hill led a day most 35 laps on his way to victory. With his cheap price and knack for winning at road races, I think Hill is a great pick for this weekend’s race.
C-List Sleeper Pick Drivers
Brandon Brown ($5,200)
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 20 races. So far, this year Brown has two top-five finishes at Phoenix Raceway and Charlotte Motor Speedway. To go along with back-to-back top 10 finishes at the two Daytona tracks and seven top 10 finishes total. 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-five or 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.
Now go win your matchup and let us know how you did. Or if I picked every driver that will be in that lap 61 crash, I encourage you to let me hear it. Either way come find us on Twitter (@FantasyDFSX).
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