This article is part of our DFS NASCAR series.
DuraMAX Drydene 400
Location: Dover, Del.
Course: Dover Motor Speedway
Format: 1.0-mile oval
Ross Chastain snuck through for his second win of the season last week at Talladega Superspeedway, becoming the second driver in as many races to lead just the final lap and win after Kyle Busch did the same at Bristol. Chastain's victory leaves half of the playoff spots still available for nonwinners so far this season. However, the way this season has been going, drivers and teams are already feeling the pressure to win as they watch those spots slowly disappear. Tyler Reddick is one of those drivers who has been on the cusp of winning multiple times this season only to remain winless. He and Christopher Bell straddle the playoff cut line and will be hoping to get their victories sooner rather than later to assure themselves a spot in the championship battle. They get their next chance Sunday at Dover Motor Speedway where Alex Bowman made the turn into Victory Lane last season.
Key Stats at Dover International Speedway
- Number of races: 103
- Winners from pole: 13
- Winners from top-5 starters: 58
- Winners from top-10 starters: 78
- Winners from 21st or lower starters: 5
- Fastest race: 135.734 mph
Previous 10 Dover Winners
2021 - Alex Bowman
2020 II - Kevin Harvick
2020 I - Denny Hamlin
2019 fall - Kyle Larson
2019 spring - Martin Truex Jr.
2018 fall - Chase Elliott
2018 spring - Kevin Harvick
2017 fall - Kyle Busch
2017 spring - Jimmie Johnson
2016 fall - Martin Truex Jr.
Dover's demanding 1.0-mile high-banked oval is paved in concrete and is on machinery. The circuit's long straights and tight turns are a lot like a larger Bristol. It can be hard on brakes and very hard on tires. Track position typically plays a heavy role in the finishing order, and fantasy players will want to center their selections among the top qualifiers. Kevin Harvick and Alex Bowman bucked the trends in the last two races by winning from starting spots outside of the top 15 for the first time since Tony Stewart in 2013. Dover requires drivers to get into a rhythm early, again like Bristol, and stage breaks will be times at which teams may try to gamble to gain track position if they fall behind early. Avoiding mistakes on pit road and being able to maintain track position, even through restarts, will be contributing factors for drivers to be in the mix to fight for the win at the finish.
DRAFTKINGS VALUE PICKS (Based on Standard $50K Salary Cap)
DraftKings Tier 1 Values
DraftKings Tier 2 Values
DraftKings Tier 3 Values
DraftKings Long-Shot Values
MY PICKS THIS WEEK
Lower-Risk Lineup ($50K Salary Cap)
Many signs, including speed last week at Talladega, point to the Hendrick Motorsports drivers being the ones to beat this week at Dover. The question for fantasy players is which one (s) to choose. In the safer-risk lineup I'm going with William Byron (DK $11,000, FD $13,000). He was the first to win multiple races this season, hasn't finished lower than 18th since California and has back to back finishes of fourth at this circuit. Martin Truex Jr. (DK $9,800, FD $11,500) is another logical choice. He has three Dover wins to his credit and led laps in four of the last five races at the track. He was fifth last week at Talladega, which was his second top-five in the last four races. Chase Briscoe (DK $8,300, FD $8,500) has been consistently competitive this season. His first series win came earlier this season on another 1.0-mile oval at Phoenix. Kurt Busch (DK $7,500, FD $7,000) won at Dover in 2011. He also finished 13th or better in four of the last five races at the track, which makes him a reliable top-15 option for the middle positions in most rosters. After Erik Jones (DK $6,800, FD $5,000) nearly won last week, it might also be good for fantasy players to bet on him maintaining some of that momentum. He finished 22nd in last year's race but is inching toward the playoff positions in the standings with four top-15 finishes in the last six races. Aric Almirola (DK $6,600, FD $5,000) also looks like a good bargain for fantasy players this week. He led 22 laps and finished seventh at Dover in the second race at the track in 2020 before crashing out of last year's race.
Higher-Risk Lineup ($50K Salary Cap)
Another top Hendrick option this week is Chase Elliott (DK $11,300, FD $13,500). He is the only driver still winless this season in the organization but is showing the speed to get it done. Elliott won at Dover in 2018 and has been a regular face in the top five there, too. He has eight top-fives from 11 starts at the track, making him a top choice this week. Reddick (DK $8,800, FD $8,800) is another winless driver who most are expecting to visit Victory Lane soon. He narrowly missed his first win at Bristol two weeks ago and got his first Dover top-10 last season. Last week's winner, Chastain (DK $8,600, FD $9,000) is on a hot streak. He has a full dose of momentum heading into Dover this week. His best Dover finish came last season, a 15th-place finish after he started 19th. Christopher Bell (DK $8,100, FD $8,000) is also in search of a 2022 victory. He qualified on pole last week at Talladega but left with a 22nd-place finish. Despite last week's disappointment, he scored three top-10s in the last five races and is capable of much more than his past Dover results would suggest. Dover has been a good venue for Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (DK $7,000, FD $5,800) at times. He has three top-10s from 18 career starts , the most recent being a 10th-place finish in 2020. Finishing off the selections is AJ Allmendinger (DK $6,200, FD $3,500) who will do double duty this weekend in both Xfinity and Cup Series races. He has three top-10s at the track in Cup competition and finished fourth in the Xfinity Series race at the track last season. Saturday's seat time could give him an advantage Sunday, too.