WATCH: PRICE CHECK


Rankings below are based on a mixture of expected output and DraftKings’ NASCAR salaries for that day. The ordering is not based on highest projected fantasy totals, but rather by value of each driver.

(fppk = average fantasy points per $1,000 of salary. The typical median fppk for a 2016 race was in the 3s. Plate tracks tend to be lower and short tracks tend to run higher due to the amount of laps.)

RankDriverSalary
1Joey Logano$9,000
2Kyle Busch$10,200
3AJ Allmendinger$9,500
4Clint Bowyer$9,400
5Martin Truex, Jr.$10,300


1. Joey Logano ($9,000) – At JGR, Logano was terrible at road courses. When he joined Penske, they told him the secret. He’s finished 11th or better in seven of eight road races with Penske. In his last five road races, he’s finished 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th and 6th. (3.8 fppk)

2. Kyle Busch ($10,200) – In 2015, Rowdy earned his first win at Sonoma after returning from injury. He went on to win the Championship that season. Kyle Busch is good at intermediate tracks, shorts tracks, and he’s good on the road. He has 14 top 10s at road courses. (5.3 fppk)

3. AJ Allmendinger ($9,500) – Misfortune has kept the best road racer in NASCAR out of Victory Lane. Allmendinger does not need a lucky break; an uneventful race would likely mean a win. In four of the last six road course races, Allmendinger has led over 20 laps in each race. (3.7 fppk)

4. Clint Bowyer ($9,400) – Sonoma is one of Bowyer’s best tracks. He has eight top-10s in 11 races at Sonoma (six top-5s). Last season in an underfunded HScott Motorsports car, Bowyer looked fast all weekend until an electrical fire ruined his race. He’ll have a fast car on Sunday. (3.7 fppk)

5. Martin Truex, Jr. ($10,300) – Is Truex human at the road courses? Not really. He’s not the same terrifying monster as he is at the ovals, but he’s fast. He won at Sonoma in his MWR days, and he finished 5th and 7th at the road courses last season. (6.9 fppk)


RankDriverSalary
6Kyle Larson$9,300
7Kevin Harvick$9,900
8Dale Earnhardt, Jr.$8,100
9Kurt Busch$9,800
10Kasey Kahne$8,000


6. Kyle Larson ($9,300) – It may have taken longer than fans expected, but Larson is the face of NASCAR. Actually, he’s the face of North American racing. Larson has raced better than his Sonoma finishes indicate. Don’t be surprised if he reverses that trend this weekend. (6.4 fppk)

7. Kevin Harvick ($9,900) – In the last two Sonoma races, Harvick has two top-10s. In his 16 career races, the California native has zero wins. Harvick is running in the K&N race on Saturday. He may learn something in this lower series race that propels himself to victory in the Cup race. (4.5 fppk)

8. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. ($8,100) – Over the last couple of years, Earnhardt, Jr. has improved as a road racer with finishes of 11th or better in his last five road course races. Before you lock in Junior, remember his shifting issues at Pocono. There will be a lot of shifting this weekend. (2.4 fppk)

9. Kurt Busch ($9,800) – The Busch brothers can run a road course. In the last 20 road races, Kurt has 15 top 15 finishes. He hasn’t finished outside of the top 15 at a road course in four years. He led almost half of the 2015 Sonoma race. (2.9 fppk)

10. Kasey Kahne ($8,000) – Sonoma is a Kahne track. He has a top-10 finish in a Dodge, a Ford and a Chevy. He’s riding a four race top-10 streak at Sonoma, and a couple of those top-10s were when the #5 car was average at best. (3.6 fppk)


RankDriverSalary
11Denny Hamlin$8,900
12Jimmie Johnson$9,600
13Brad Keselowski$8,600
14Chase Elliott$8,300
15Ryan Newman$7,900


11. Denny Hamlin ($8,900) – Last year, Hamlin should have swept the road races, but he made a mistake on the very last turn at Sonoma. Before 2016, he was not good at road courses. He went 12 races without a top-10 and a lot of those finishes were in the 30s. Maybe, he’s figured it out. (3.6 fppk)

12. Jimmie Johnson ($9,600) – His Sonoma stats will not blow you away; they’re good, just not Jimmie Johnson good. Track history aside, he looks like he can win any weekend this year. His three wins this season are the most in NASCAR. (4.7 fppk)

13. Brad Keselowski ($8,600) – Just because a track fits into a category doesn’t mean that it’s similar to the other tracks in that category. Sonoma and Watkins Glen are different. Keselowski’s stats will support that claim. BK has four top-5s at Watkins Glen, and one top-10 at Sonoma. (4.5 fppk)

14. Chase Elliott ($8,300) – This is only Chase Elliott’s second trip to Sonoma. Last year, he raced in the K&N Series race at Sonoma to gain experience. He won that race but earned a disappointing 21st place finish in the Cup race. (4.1 fppk)

15. Ryan Newman ($7,900) – Someday Ryan Newman will retire, and I will no longer have to write about his consistency. Newman is a living, breathing mathematical proof. His stability is a fact that would hold up in court. Death, taxes and Newman around 15th, even at Sonoma. (3.6 fppk)


RankDriverSalary
16Paul Menard$7,400
17Ryan Blaney$7,300
18Jamie McMurray$8,500
19Danica Patrick$5,800
20Matt Kenseth$7,500


16. Paul Menard ($7,400) – There are a couple tracks where Menard stands outs, and Sonoma is one of those tracks. Since joining RCR, Menard has six consecutive top-20 finishes at Sonoma (average finish of 14th). (3.2 fppk)

17. Ryan Blaney ($7,300) – From all-time highs to all-time lows, Blaney followed his win at Pocono with a wreck at Michigan. He ran middle of the pack at Sonoma last year, so he’s entered the K&N race on Saturday for a quick tune-up. (2.9 fppk)

18. Jamie McMurray ($8,500) – The Chip Ganassi cars are as fast as they’ve ever been. McMurray’s numbers at Sonoma are similar to his sure and steady stats everywhere else. He may not be a contender, but a top-10 is within his aim. (3.7 fppk)

19. Danica Patrick ($5,800) – You would expect more from her at road courses with her Indycar background. You would also expect a much higher price. Her average finish in eight road course races is 21st. (2.6 fppk)

20. Matt Kenseth ($7,500) – You will see this stat several times this weekend. Matt Kenseth has one top-10 at Sonoma in his career (17 races). Why is he ranked? Sometimes a light bulb goes on. Look at Hamlin, Earnhardt, Jr. and Logano’s stats. (3.1 fppk)

 


I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is greenflagradio2) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.