Daily Fantasy NASCAR 101: Building a Routine

The point of this article is to help everyone get better at Daily Fantasy NASCAR. The sport is watched by millions across the country and was a very popular daily fantasy game last season. If you’ve never watched a race, I’m here to hopefully change that this season. We will be doing a lot of awesome NASCAR stuff here, and this article is just the beginning.

When playing Daily Fantasy NASCAR, there are four really important stats to pay attention too. By following the process below, and using these four things the right way, you can become a successful DFS NASCAR player. It’s a sport in which you can do your research over multiple days, which makes it a lot easier for someone working a nine-to-five type of job.

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Track History

The first thing you’ll want to look at is past results. It’s a great starting point for your weekly research and it’s something that can be done over a few days. When I start looking at track history, I focus on driver rating, quality passes, and percentage of laps in the top 15. Driver rating is the best all-around stat you can use when looking at past results.

Quality passes is a great way to learn whose good at driving through the field. If a driver has a high-quality pass percentage, he’s likely going to present some solid value if he’s starting towards the back of the field. This doesn’t equal any type of fantasy points, but it’s another way to figure out some of the cheaper options.

Running in the top 15 is good for a couple of reasons. You can’t predict any type of wrecks in NASCAR, but it’s good to see where drivers are running before potentially being involved in a wreck. Second, if a driver has a high percentage in the top 15, he’s likely very good at the track and could be a solid option. Using these few stats, you can put together everything else as the week goes along.

With the 2019 package, green flag speed has become very important. It’s showing us who has speed, but also the cars getting through the corners better than others. I really like looking at quality passes with this 2019 package because it’s become a lot harder to make moves.

Qualifying

Qualifying is the most important part of building your fantasy lineups. When looking through the qualifying data, you’ll find most weekends there’s a lot of value with guys starting towards the back. This is a great way to find a couple of mid-range options for your cash lineups.

Example: Jimmie Johnson blows a tire during qualifying and will start the race 40th at Texas. Going through past data, Johnson is solid at Texas, and the team will have the car ready for Sunday. Johnson becomes almost a must-play in this scenario and offers place differential value that no other driver can offer.

Practice

Practice times are where I spend the most time digging through the data, and this is something a lot of players will overlook. There are usually three practices every weekend. The first practice, teams will focus on qualifying trim, and this is something you can really overlook. The second practice, teams start focusing on race trim, and this is usually the practice you gather a lot of data from. Look at the 10 laps to 15 lap speeds, and see who is running fast over a longer period of time. Teams are still making adjustments during these practices, and testing a lot of things out. Happy Hour practice is the last hour these cars are on the track before the race. The final adjustments are made, and you can really see who is going to be fast on race day. Putting all of this together is another great way to find value.

Example: Denny Hamlin qualifies 25th for the race. Looking through the practice data, you realize Hamlin is in the top five in both practices, and he’s the fastest driver over a 10-lap run. There’s a good chance that Hamlin’s team has figured out why they were slow in qualifying. When this happens, the driver has a really good chance to move up in the field and could be the difference in your lineup.

This is also a great way to look for a few guys to fade in GPPs. If a driver qualifies in a high position but is having a tough time getting the car in race trim, you can gain a nice advantage over the field if he drops back fast.

Example: Clint Bowyer qualified third for the race, but is 29th in second practice and then he’s 33rd in final practice. This team is having issues with something on race trim, and Bowyer could become a good fade at this point. Teams can make adjustments during the race, but I would still avoid situations like this. The last thing you want is a driver struggling all race.

Driver Talk

Driver talk is something I know a lot of daily fantasy players overlook, and it’s one of the most important things in NASCAR. In other sports, coach’s talk is the most annoying thing ever, but in NASCAR it could be the key to finishing your roster. If a driver that has qualified high is complaining about his car, this might be another good time to use caution when thinking about playing him.

Twitter is a great tool for this, but I like to record or watch practices to hear what the drivers are saying. If you use TweetDeck, I’ve turned my NASCAR list into a public list. This list has drivers, crew chiefs, team members, and NASCAR media members.

If you guys have any questions, please feel free to reach out in the comment section, or @Stevietpfl on twitter.

About the Author

  • Stephen Young (stevietpfl)

  • The long-time host of the popular Morning Grind, Stephen Young, aka stevietpfl is also one of the top NASCAR analysts in the industry. The RotoGrinders lead NASCAR analyst is a multiple time finalist for the Fantasy Sports Writer Association Racing Writer of the Year. Stevie is also a top baseball mind who excels in multiple sports in DFS. He has qualified for multiple live finals including a 3rd place finish at the 2015 FantasyAces Basketball Championship.

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Comments

  • BioHaze

    SOLD!! I’m definitely giving Fantasy NASCAR a shot this year. Thanks stevie!!

  • LeRoiStephon

    • Blogger of the Month

    So where’s a good place to find all of the aformentioned(Track History, Qualifying, Practice) info you mentioned!! Is there a good website where all this information is available?? I’m gonna play my first NASCAR games this weekend because of your articles!!

  • stevietpfl

    Morning Grind co-host, Lead NASCAR Analyst

    • 191

      RG Overall Ranking

    • Ranked #35

      RG Tiered Ranking

    • 2015 FanDuel MLB Playboy Mansion Finalist

    • 2015 FAWBC Finalist

    @LeRoiStephon said...

    So where’s a good place to find all of the aformentioned(Track History, Qualifying, Practice) info you mentioned!! Is there a good website where all this information is available?? I’m gonna play my first NASCAR games this weekend because of your articles!!

    For the unlimited this weekend, data is limited. It’s a good race to stack them members.

    For the 500, look for an announcement on RG soon.

  • JoelHD82

    what do u mean exactly “stack them members”?

  • heartman

    http://www.mrn.com/?homepage=true

    http://www.jayski.com/news/pages/story/_/page/2015-NASCAR-Sprint-Cup-Race-Results

    Hey Leroi, both these sites plus Nascar.com will give you all the free stats you need. Have fun!

  • heartman

    That didn’t work.

    www.mrn.com

    www.nascar.com

  • Jumpman9823

    Stevie knows his stuff….I was a 1st time last year!!!

  • jminrod

    also check out
    driveraverages.com
    racing-reference.info
    both great spot sas well as the 2 mentioned earlier. Jayski is great for those little details of the weekend that you can’t get other places

  • KCberv

    Great article Stevie! I played on and off last year and had a lot of success. I will be doing all the races this year and this article raised a couple good points to raise my game. If I could ask another question how do you go about analyzing a hedge team. For instance like the Sprint Unlimited I made 4 teams and go LUCKY one team I picked random pretty much with guys that just had decent Daytona finishes over the last 4 years throwing out practice stats etc and ended up picking the top 5 finishers after that crazy ending. I don’t think this random guessing is a consistently repeatable win. Can you give some insight into how you pick you portfolio of teams?

  • JNeal916

    Jayski has all the info you’ll ever need as far as practice times and complete coverage of all of the events for the weekend.

  • NakedGun99

    I had my first big cash last weekend. $250 on Draft Kings. I always see Stevie towards the top of the tournaments so I figured I’d subscribe and try to win even more money

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