RaceDayScore NASCAR: Hollywood Casino 400

RaceDayScore NASCAR: Hollywood Casino 400

This article is part of our RaceDayScore NASCAR series.

Hollywood Casino 400

Location: Kansas City, Kan.
Course: Kansas Speedway
Format: 1.5-mile oval
Laps: 267

Race Preview

For the first time in the current Chase for the Sprint Cup format Jimmie Johnson advanced to the final eight drivers. The driver plagued by so many mistakes this season made the breakthrough in the rain-delayed Bank of America 500 with his third victory of the season. The win snapped a losing streak that had many wondering if it would ever end. The race was not so good for the remaining 11 contenders, as pit penalties, failures and contact gave many in the Chase field shaky starts to the second round of elimination races. Those drivers affected will be aiming to exit this week's race in Kansas in the best possible position in order to breathe a little easier at Talladega Superspeedway in two weeks. Two races remain before the next four drivers will be eliminated, and none of them had wanted to head to the superspeedway knowing that they need a top finish to keep their championship fights alive.

Key Stats at Kansas Speedway

Number of previous races: 21
Winners from pole: 4
Winners from top-5 starters: 9
Winners from top-10 starters: 12
Winners from 21st or lower starters: 2
Fastest race: 144.122 mph

Last 10 Kansas Winners

2016 spring - Kyle Busch
2015 fall - Joey Logano
2015 spring - Jimmie Johnson
2014 fall - Joey Logano
2014 spring - Jeff Gordon
2013 fall - Kevin Harvick
2013 spring - Matt Kenseth
2012 fall - Matt Kenseth
2012 spring - Denny Hamlin
2011 fall - Jimmie Johnson

Kansas Speedway is a challenging 1.5-mile oval for drivers and teams. The high speeds reward teams that are able to find an effective chassis setup early in the weekend. Qualifying is important, and a car that is handling well enables drivers to try different lines as well as be more adaptable to pit strategy throughout the distance. Kyle Busch won at the track earlier this season, but Martin Truex Jr. led the most laps. The Toyota machines have been the best at these types of circuits throughout the year, but Hendrick Motorsports is closing the gap. A Toyota victory is no longer a foregone conclusion, and the Chase implications of this week's race promise to make it one of the more difficult races for fantasy players to predict this season.

(Based on Standard $60K Salary Cap)

Tier 1 Values

Brad Keselowski - $11,800
Kevin Harvick - $11,800
Matt Kenseth - $11,500
Martin Truex Jr. - $11,000

Tier 2 Values

Jimmie Johnson - $10,800
Kasey Kahne - $10,600
Denny Hamlin - $10,400
Kyle Larson - $10,100

Tier 3 Values

Alex Bowman - $9,800
Ryan Blaney - $9,800
Greg Biffle - $9,600
Aric Almirola - $9,100

Long-Shot Values

Casey Mears - $8,600
Regan Smith - $8,400
Chris Buescher - $8,000


Lower-Risk Lineup ($60K Salary Cap)

Kevin Harvick - $11,800
Matt Kenseth - $11,500
Joey Logano - $11,100
Martin Truex Jr. - $11,000
Michael Annett - $7,500
Joey Gase - $6,700

This week's lower-risk lineup gives fantasy players the highest-scoring combination of drivers using Race Day Score's point system through the last five races at Kansas Speedway. Harvick is the top-ranked driver through that period with an average of almost 51 laps led per race. Kenseth scores well across all point categories and has an average finish of 9.4 at the circuit in that span. Both of those drivers as well as Logano and Truex have been among the best since the Chase began. Last week's 13th-place finish broke a string of five consecutive top-10s for Truex, which included three victories. Logano also slipped at Charlotte, ending his run of eight races with a finish of 11th or better. To round out the lineup we add Annett and Gase who combine for a total of eight career Kansas starts with zero finishes equal to or worse than where they qualified.

Higher-Risk Lineup
($60K Salary Cap)

Kyle Busch - $11,000
Jimmie Johnson - $10,800
Denny Hamlin - $10,400
Austin Dillon - $10,000
A.J. Allmendinger - $9,700
Chris Buescher - $8,000

Busch's trouble with the Sprint Cup races in Kansas are well documented, but he finally bagged his long-awaited win at the circuit in the spring. Fantasy owners have to trust that his problems at the track are over now, just as they have to believe Johnson's long 2016 slump ended with his victory last week in Charlotte. Buying into those factors already makes this a strong lineup but does carry some unknowns. Hamlin is a former Kansas winner, but crashed out there earlier this season. He also has to overcome last week's 30th-place finish. Dillon scored his second top-10 at Kansas this spring with a sixth-place run after starting 17th and finds himself among the Chase contenders requiring a top finish this week to keep championship hope alive. Kansas recently has become a good circuit for Allmendinger. He has three finishes of 14th or better in the last four races at the track, and Buescher recorded a respectable 24th-place finish earlier this season in his only Sprint Cup start at the oval.

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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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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