DFS NASCAR: Coca-Cola 600

DFS NASCAR: Coca-Cola 600

This article is part of our NASCAR DFS series.

Coca-Cola 600

Location: Concord, N.C.
Course: Charlotte Motor Speedway
Format: 1.5-mile quad-oval
Laps: 400

Race Preview

One week after Ryan Blaney took home the million-dollar prize for winning the NASCAR All-Star Race the competitors turn their attention to NASCAR's longest race. The Memorial Day weekend classic at Charlotte Motor Speedway is a 400-lap marathon that stresses drivers, teams and machinery alike. Kyle Larson outlasted the field last season. He and his Hendrick Motorsports teammates will be anxious to get back on track and put the problems of the All-Star weekend behind them. While the Charlotte oval now only has one appearance each season, it is still one of NASCAR's most well-known tracks. This week's race will be the 124th time the series has raced on its high banks. Fifty-three different drivers have won in that time with Kevin Harvick and Martin Truex Jr. leading this week's field of active drivers with three Charlotte wins each. Eleven different drivers have visited Victory Lane so far this year, and only five playoff spots remain for nonwinners with 13 regular-season races remaining.

Key Stats at Charlotte Motor Speedway

  • Number of races: 123
  • Winners from pole: 18
  • Winners from top-5 starters: 69
  • Winners from top-10 starters: 91
  • Winners from 21st or lower starters: 10
  • Fastest race: 160.655 mph

Previous 10 Charlotte Winners

2021 - Kyle Larson
2020 II - Chase Elliott
2020 I - Brad Keselowski
2019 - Martin Truex Jr.
2018 - Kyle Busch
2017 fall - Martin Truex Jr.
2017 spring - Austin Dillon
2016 fall - Jimmie Johnson
2016 spring - Martin Truex Jr.
2015 fall - Joey Logano

Charlotte's fast oval features banking of 24 degrees in the turns and is relatively similar to Texas, where the teams raced just a week ago. Like Texas, and most other 1.5-mile ovals, track position is a key factor in success. More than half of Charlotte's 123 races have been won by drivers starting in the top five, and nearly 75 percent have been won by someone starting in the top 10. Fantasy players saw last week that, even with the new car, clean air is still an advantage. Cars handle differently out front than they do in traffic. Even though traffic is a concern, Charlotte's wide turns offer different lines for drivers to make passes and help their cars stay quick through a fuel run. The high speeds at this track tend to separate the field, but the new car may help keep things closer than seen in recent seasons. Pit strategy is a big factor over 600 miles of racing. The long race will feature four stages, which means extra points are available for those fighting to get into those playoff positions.

DRAFTKINGS VALUE PICKS (Based on Standard $50K Salary Cap)

DraftKings Tier 1 Values  

Kyle Larson - $11,300
Kyle Busch - $11,100
Chase Elliott - $10,700
Denny Hamlin - $10,500

DraftKings Tier 2 Values  

Ross Chastain - $9,800
Tyler Reddick - $9,600
Alex Bowman - $9,300
Ryan Blaney - $9,100

DraftKings Tier 3 Values

Joey Logano - $8,900
Kurt Busch - $8,600
Christopher Bell - $8,400
Kevin Harvick - $8,000

DraftKings Long-Shot Values

Daniel Suarez - $7,800
Austin Cindric - $7,100
Bubba Wallace - $6,900
Chris Buescher - $6,700

MY PICKS THIS WEEK

Lower-Risk Lineup ($50K Salary Cap)

Kyle Larson - $11,300
Tyler Reddick - $9,600
Christopher Bell - $8,400
Kevin Harvick - $8,000
Daniel Suarez - $7,800
Corey Lajoie - $4,900

Defending Coca-Cola 600 winner Larson (DK $11,300, FD $14,500) is not having the dominant season he had last year, but he continues to be a threat for victory each week. He had an early exit from last week's All-Star Race and won this race from pole last season with 327 laps led. Tyler Reddick (DK $9,600, FD $10,000) finally got a 2022 win last week, unfortunately it was in the Xfinity Series. That should just be a stepping stone in confidence to overcome his near misses earlier this year in the Cup Series. Reddick has two top-10s from three Charlotte starts. Another driver showing signs of impending wins is Christopher Bell (DK $8,400, FD $9,500). Bell is on an excellent run of form heading to Charlotte with four straight top-10s including the All-Star Race, which should be valuable momentum this week. Former champion Harvick (DK $8,000, FD $8,000) has flown under the radar much of this season. He was on a string of three straight top-10s before Kansas and has three Charlotte wins on his resume. He is definitely a driver to keep track of this week. Daniel Suarez (DK $7,800, FD $7,500) reminded people not to forget about him last week, too. The Trackhouse Racing Team driver could use his success last week to boost him back into the top 10 this week. Corey Lajoie (DK $4,900, FD $3,000) gambled with a no-tire stop in last week's All-Star Open to try to advance with a stage win. That gutsy move didn't pay off, but that type of aggressiveness is good to see. Lajoie's best Charlotte finish was 12th in 2019, and he scored top-20 finishes in the last two races there. It's time for him to start getting attention from fantasy players.

Higher-Risk Lineup ($50K Salary Cap)

Kyle Busch - $11,100
Ross Chastain - $9,800
Ryan Blaney - $9,100
Erik Jones - $7,200
Austin Cindric - $7,100
Ryan Preece - $5,200

Last week was another frustrating one for Kyle Busch (DK $11,100, FD $14,000) as he was clouted from behind after slowing for a flat tire. One might argue he would have more wins than just the one this year without that kind of bad luck. His recent record at this track can't be ignored, though. With a win and three other top-fives from the last five Charlotte races, he is deserved one of this week's early favorites. Ross Chastain (DK $9,800, FD $10,500) was the one who hit Busch last week. That bad luck last week doesn't diminish the fact that he is one of the hottest drivers on the circuit right now, though. He has not finished in the top 10 at Charlotte in any of his four prior tries, but fantasy players should expect that to change Sunday. Last week's winner Blaney (DK $9,100, FD $12,500) now knows he and the team can get it done. They now just need to do the same in a points-paying race. Blaney leads the standings among nonwinners but needs that win. He and Team Penske should be quick this week given their speed at Texas, and many would expect Blaney to lead the charge among those teammates. A few rough weeks have slowed Erik Jones's (DK $7,200, FD $7,800) success, but he might have gotten the monkey off his back with a fifth-place showing in the All-Star Race after advancing through the fan vote. Jones has four top-10s so far this season and finished 16th in this race last season. He is poised to improve upon that this year. Like teammate Blaney, Austin Cindric (DK $7,100, FD $6,500) showed his potential for a top run this week with his performance at Texas. This will be his first series start on the Charlotte oval, but he finished second in the Xfinity race at the track in 2021. Finally, Ryan Preece (DK $5,200, FD $3,000) is a driver fantasy players should keep in mind this week. He is pulling triple duty by running in all three races at the track this weekend and will know better than anyone how the track will evolve Sunday evening. His best Charlotte finish from four prior tries is 22nd in 2020, but the extra seat time this week could help him move into the top 20.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. C.J. Radune plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: DraftKings: cjradune, RaceDayScore: cjradune.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
C.J. Radune
Radune covers NASCAR, Formula 1 and soccer for RotoWire. He was named the Racing Writer of the Year by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association in 2012 and 2015.
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