DraftKings NASCAR: Toyota Save Mart 350

DraftKings NASCAR: Toyota Save Mart 350

This article is part of our NASCAR DFS series.

Toyota Save Mart 350

Location: Sonoma, Calif.
Course: Sonoma Raceway
Format: 1.9-mile road course
Laps: 110

Race Preview

Sonoma Raceway and the Toyota Save Mart 350 await the NASCAR Sprint Cup teams this week after a mid-season rest. The rolling course in the California wine country is the first of two road courses that make an appearance on the Sprint Cup calendar. Kyle Busch will enter this weekend's race as the defending race winner after turning in a stunning performance at the track last season en route to his first series title. However, Penske Racing's Joey Logano is the most recent winner after a dominant showing in Michigan two weeks ago. Sonoma could level the field for the teams chasing Joe Gibbs Racing, and this week's race could prove to be one of the most unpredictable of the season.

Key Stats at Sonoma Raceway

Number of previous races: 27
Winners from pole: 5
Winners from top-5 starters: 15
Winners from top-10 starters: 19
Winners from 21st or lower starters: 2
Fastest race: 83.624 mph

Last 10 Sonoma Winners

2015 - Kyle Busch
2014 - Carl Edwards
2013 - Martin Truex Jr.
2012 - Clint Bowyer
2011 - Kurt Busch
2010 - Jimmie Johnson
2009 - Kasey Kahne
2008 - Kyle Busch
2007 - Juan Pablo Montoya
2006 - Jeff Gordon

The long lap and narrow track at Sonoma make track position the key to having a successful day. The Sprint Cup cars aren't the most ideal machines for this type of course, and that means drivers often have to barge their way forward to make passes. Of course, the easiest passes are those made in the pits. The long lap allows teams to pit off sequence without losing a lap, and staggering stops to the leaders along with opportune cautions enable cars to leapfrog forward in the running order. Teams will attempt to make their cars as nimble as possible, but the punishment of throwing the car onto the curbs and braking hard into the turns to make passes can create an atmosphere for mechanical troubles as well. The road course races often produce surprise results.

(Based on Standard $50K Salary Cap)

DraftKings Tier 1 Values

Kurt Busch - $10,700
Kevin Harvick - $10,400
Jimmie Johnson - $10,100

DraftKings Tier 2 Values

Dale Earnhardt Jr. - $9,700
Joey Logano - $9,500
Martin Trux Jr. - $9,300
Carl Edwards - $9,100

DraftKings Tier 3 Values

Denny Hamlin - $8,000
Jamie McMurray - $7,800
Ryan Newman - $7,500
Austin Dillon - $7,300

DraftKings Long-Shot Values

Paul Menard - $6,900
Aric Almirola - $6,500
Danica Patrick - $6,100


Lower-Risk Lineup ($50K Salary Cap)

Kurt Busch - $10,700
Jimmie Johnson - $10,100
Kasey Kahne - $8,700
Clint Bowyer - $7,700
Austin Dillon - $7,300
Regan Smith - $5,500

The highest driver rating at Sonoma belongs to Kurt Busch. He has four top-fives at the track in the last five races. To back him up in the lower-risk lineup we add Jimmie Johnson. The No. 48 driver hasn't failed to finish in the top 10 at Sonoma since 2008, giving fantasy owners two of the strongest drivers at the track. Next up is Kasey Kahne. He has been relatively inconsistent so far in 2016, but he's reliable at Sonoma with three straight top-10 finishes there. Another underperformer in 2016 making an appearance in this lineup is Bowyer. Some of his problems this weekend will be neutralized by the course, and he has five consecutive top-10s at Sonoma. Dillon has been knocking on the door of a win almost all season, and there's no reason he couldn't get the job done here this week. Regan Smith will cap off this option with a best Sonoma finish of 16th in 2011.

Higher-Risk Lineup
($50K Salary Cap)

Dale Earnhardt Jr. - $9,700
Joey Logano - $9,500
Martin Truex Jr. - $9,300
Carl Edwards - $9,100
Paul Menard - $6,900
Michael McDowell - $5,400

Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s two latest Sonoma finishes earn him the top spot in the higher-risk fantasy option. He finished third here in 2014 and seventh in 2015. Logano has also gained consistency at this track recently, and his fifth-place finish last season along with three total top-10s in the last five Sonoma races give him the second nod. The 2013 Sonoma winner was Martin Truex Jr., which makes him another top option this week, given his 2016 form. Edwards won this race in 2014, and has three top-fives at the track in the last five races. While Paul Menard has been lackluster so far this season, Sonoma could give him a chance for redemption. He finished fifth in 2014's race. Lastly, Michael McDowell finishes the lineup and can offer fantasy owners valuable points for his tendency to finish better than his start at this particular track.

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.
RotoWire Community
Join Our Subscriber-Only NASCAR Chat
Chat with our writers and other RotoWire NASCAR fans for all the pre-game info and in-game banter.
Join The Discussion
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.
NASCAR DFS:  YellaWood 500
NASCAR DFS: YellaWood 500
NASCAR DFS Trucks:  Love's RV Stop 250
NASCAR DFS Trucks: Love's RV Stop 250
YellaWood 500 Preview: The Wild Card of the Chase
YellaWood 500 Preview: The Wild Card of the Chase
NASCAR Barometer:  William Byron Snatches Texas Victory
NASCAR Barometer: William Byron Snatches Texas Victory
NASCAR DFS:  AutoTrader EchoPark Automotive 400
NASCAR DFS: AutoTrader EchoPark Automotive 400
Autotrader EchoPark Automotive 400 Preview: Round of 12 Begins
Autotrader EchoPark Automotive 400 Preview: Round of 12 Begins