Get your engines started for the Pit Boss 250 DFS slate! Sean Engel provides top NASCAR Daily Fantasy Picks for Xfinity Series DraftKings lineups!
THIS WEEK’S RACE DETAILS:
Time & Date of Race: Saturday, May 22nd, 2021 at 4:00 PM EST
Track: Circuit of the Americas – Grand Prix Circuit
Track Details: 3.426-Mile Road Course
Number of Turns: 20
Race Length: 44 Laps
Last Race Details at a Road Course:
Track: Daytona Road Course
Date: February 20th, 2021
Race Winner: Ty Gibbs
Lap Leaders (8 Total Drivers): Austin Cindric (29), Ty Gibbs (14), A.J. Allmendinger (4), Harrison Burton (3), Jeb Burton (2), Daniel Hemric (2), Ryan Sieg (1), Gray Gaulding (1)
Stage 1 Winner: Austin Cindric
Stage 2 Winner: Ty Gibbs
Place Differential (How many positions a driver finishes above or below their starting position):
+/- 1 Pt each
Fastest Laps (Awarded for the driver that sets the fastest lap time on each lap):
+ 0.45 Pts.
Laps Led (Awarded for each lap a driver leads the race):
+ 0.25 Pts.
Finishing Position (Awarded for where a driver finishes at the end of the race):
1st: +45 Pts.
2nd: +42 Pts.
3rd: + 41 Pts.
4th: + 40 Pts.
5th: + 39 Pts.
And the amount of points earned continues decreasing until the last finishing position in the field.
DK Scoring Notes to Keep in Mind:
- A driver’s starting position is based on his qualifying position. If a driver’s qualifying position is disallowed, his starting position will be his new spot at the back of the race. If a driver’s starting position changes between qualifying and the start of the race for any other reason (Example: going to a backup car) the original qualifying position will be used to calculate place differential.
- Finishing Position is defined as the driver’s standing order at the end of the race. Disqualifications related to same-day post-race inspection will not change a driver’s Finishing Position, Laps Led, or Fastest Laps stats.
If you’re new to Elite Sports’ DFS Picks articles, here is the rundown. Every week for each Xfinity race if each NASCAR National Series has a race in a weekend, this article will be published including driver outlooks based on a combination of track results, loop data, and performance from this season. If there are any pre-race events including qualifying and practices, this article will be updated based on their results upon completion. If a racer performs well or poorly throughout pre-race events, this will affect their outlook and be noted as such. Otherwise, all picks listed are final.
This article will feature three groups of driver recommendations: Top-priced picks, Mid-Tier picks, and Value Sleepers. Between each of these groups there will be 12 total drivers with their outlooks evaluated for this week’s race. These outlooks are here to help you make tough lineup calls that detail which drivers to start or park every week.
In case you want additional information to follow-up on this article, I encourage you to check out the cheat sheet for this race and the projections tab. Without further delay, I present to you the picks for this week’s race, the Pit Boss 250 at Circuit of the Americas.
Although the Xfinity Series races on a few different road courses throughout the season, this week marks the very first race at Circuit of the Americas. As a result, there is no prior track history or loop data to base projections on for this Saturday’s Xfinity event. There will be plenty of unknowns regarding how racing at COTA will go, therefore paying close attention to practice and qualifying is key to figuring out standout picks this week. Both of these pre-race events provide an indicator of who is faster than the rest of the field while qualifying is crucial to determine Place Differential upside for all drivers this week. Since qualifying will be the same day of the actual race, be ready to just lock in entries to contest early and edit your lineups with final picks once qualifying results are out.
Despite COTA having a unique track layout, races at other road courses still show which drivers fantasy players should target for lineups. Other road course events also point to the ideal strategy of how lineups should be constructed this week. This track type usually features low lap counts so while picking a dominator for lineups can make a lineup a winner, PD upside and finishing position matter more for Saturday. Considering that COTA is a new track, drivers are bound to make mistakes such as missing turns, which could also lead to crashes. As always, playing multiple lineups will maximize the chances for DFS players to win big in any contest so if some racers wreck, they still have lineups in contention to win big. Without further delay, here are my picks for this week’s Pit Boss 250 at Circuit of the Americas.
LOOP DATA AND DRIVER STATS:
Here are the winners of the last 10 Xfinity Series races at Road Courses:
February 2021: Ty Gibbs – Daytona Road Course
October 2020: A.J. Allmendinger – Charlotte Roval
August 15th, 2020: Austin Cindric – Daytona Road Course
August 8th, 2020: Austin Cindric – Road America
July 2020: Chase Briscoe – Indianapolis Grand Prix Course
September 2019: A.J. Allmendinger – Charlotte Roval
August 24th, 2019: Christopher Bell – Road America
August 10th, 2019: Austin Cindric – Mid-Ohio
August 3rd, 2019: Austin Cindric – Watkins Glen
September 2018: Chase Briscoe – Road America
PIT BOSS 250 DFS NASCAR PICKS FOR DRAFTKINGS
Note: This section will include updates after final starting positions are determined after qualifying Saturday morning.
Kyle Busch #54 (DraftKings: $10,800) – There are a few Cup regulars in the field for COTA’s Xfinity race and Kyle Busch is the most expensive to pick. The driver of the No. 54 Toyota however has extensive experience, winning a couple of events at road courses in the Cup Series as well as in the Xfinity Series. This is Busch’s first start of the year in the Xfinity Series and he was fourth in practice for Saturday’s race at COTA. With a lot of history racing at road courses and top-notch equipment from Joe Gibbs Racing, expect Busch to be competitive for the win this week.
Update: Kyle Busch qualified first for the COTA Xfinity race. Although Busch did spin at one point during qualifying, he continues to show that he has a very fast car and will lead laps right from the beginning.
Austin Cindric #22 (DraftKings: $10,700) – Defending Xfinity Series champion Austin Cindric is one of the first drivers to consider for road course lineups. The driver of the No. 22 Ford has four road course wins, which he scored within his last nine starts at the track type. Cindric also leads all Xfinity Series regulars this season in wins (3) and has the best Average Finishing Position (6.5). In Practice, Cindric earned the fastest single lap time, proving that he will be a threat to win regardless of starting position. With strong equipment from Team Penske and strong recent history at road courses, Cindric is a great choice for COTA.
Update: Austin Cindric will start eighth for Saturday’s race at COTA. Considering his practice speed and overall experience at road courses, Cindric has a small amount of PD upside and should compete for the win.
A.J. Allmendinger #16 (DraftKings: $10,400) – One of the most experienced road course racers, A.J. Allmendinger is another strong pick to build lineups around this week. In the Xfinity Series, the driver of the No. 16 Chevrolet has four road course wins including two of the last six events at the track type. This season, Allmendinger has six top-5 finishes in 10 races and was fifth in practice for COTA. Allmendinger is a favorite to win this week based on road course experience and great equipment from Kaulig Racing.
Update: A.J. Allmendinger will start seventh at COTA after setting his qualifying time. As a driver that is always a threat to win at a road course due to experience, expect Allmendinger to gain a few positions and finish close to the front.
Daniel Hemric #18 (DraftKings: $9,500) – Daniel Hemric is one of the most consistent Xfinity Series regulars this season, but still has not won a race yet. This season, Hemric has eight top-10 finishes including a finish of third at the Daytona Road Course. The driver of the No. 18 Toyota has never won at a Road Course in his Xfinity career, but he scored top-10 finishes in the majority of races at the track type. Hemric was second in practice for Saturday’s race and will compete for a top-5 finish based on equipment and past road course results.
Update: The driver of the No. 18 Toyota qualified 26th for Saturday’s race at COTA. With plenty of PD upside and a car that was strong in practice, Hemric will be a driver to challenge for a top-10 finish and also be a quality Cash game pick.
Tyler Reddick #31 (DraftKings: $8,500) – Another Cup Series regular in the field that will make for a quality DFS option is Tyler Reddick. Although the driver of the No. 31 Chevrolet has never won at a road course in the Xfinity Series, he consistently finished in the Top 10 in most of his recent appearances at the track type during his 2019 Championship season. Saturday’s race will be his third Xfinity start of the season and he placed 12th in his last race while this week he was third in practice for COTA. Look for Reddick to finish in the Top 10 based on his overall experience at road courses and practice speed.
Update: Tyler Reddick Qualified fifth for the Xfinity race at COTA. As a driver who had shown great speed throughout pre-race events, Reddick is a very favorable option for most lineups at COTA.
Miguel Paludo #8 (DraftKings: $8,200) – Road course specialist Miguel Paludo is making his second start for JR Motorsports this week at COTA. Earlier this season at Daytona Road Course, Paludo started 35th and placed seventh, procuring plenty of PD. The driver of the No. 8 Chevrolet was 18th in practice, but with JR Motorsports equipment typically being strong regardless of track type, he should still be able to place in the Top 15 with a chance at a top-10 finish. Considering his extensive road course background, Paludo is a driver DFS players need to consider, especially if he qualifies deep in the field for Saturday.
Update: Miguel Paludo qualified 15th for Saturday’s race at COTA. Due to his extensive road racing experience and with great equipment, he should pick up positive PD and finish in the Top 10 this week.
Alex Labbe #36 (DraftKings: $7,800) – A solid Mid-Tier DFS option for COTA this week is Alex Labbe. In his Xfinity Series career, Labbe has eight top-10 finishes, scoring four of them at road courses. This season, the driver of the No. 36 Chevrolet gained positive PD six times in 10 races including the Daytona Road Course. Labbe was seventh in practice for COTA, pointing to him picking up a top-10 finish and is a quality play for the price.
Update: The driver of the No. 36 Chevrolet qualified fourth for Saturday’s Xfinity race. Labbe continues to impress with excellent speed throughout pre-race events this week. Expect Labbe to finish around his starting position and be one of the better picks from this price range.
Myatt Snider #2 (DraftKings: $6,700) – Myatt Snider is a driver with potential for a good finish at COTA. This season, the driver of the No. 2 Chevrolet has six top-15 finishes while capturing positive PD three times. Snider was 10th in practice for Saturday’s race at COTA, indicating that he has the equipment capable of competing for a top-10 finish. Depending on his qualifying position, Snider is a solid option with potential upside.
Update: Myatt Snider qualified 23rd for this week’s race at COTA. The driver of the No. 2 Chevrolet offers a fair amount of upside with equipment capable of placing in the Top 15. Considering his price, he is worth picking in lineups for the cap flexibility.
Spencer Pumpelly #6 (DraftKings: $6,400) – Spencer Pumpelly is making his Xfinity Series debut this week. Pumpelly has a lot of experience racing at road courses through sports car racing series such as IMSA. The driver of the No. 6 Chevrolet was 13th in this week’s practice for COTA, pointing to equipment capable of placing in the Top 15. Due to his road course experience and equipment, Pumpelly is a decent play for the salary that could provide potential PD upside depending on where he qualifies.
Update: Spencer Pumpelly qualified 16th for Saturday’s race at COTA. His practice speed indicates that he will not climb many positions from his starting position, but Pumpelly should finish better than most around his price range.
Brandon Brown #68 (DraftKings: $6,200) – Depending on his qualifying position, Brandon Brown will be a bargain value to consider for COTA. At Road Courses, the driver of the No. 68 Chevrolet has five top-20 finishes including earlier this season at Daytona road course where he placed eighth. In 2021 in the Xfinity Series, Brown has six top-20 finishes while picking up positive PD including two of the last three races. Brown was 26th in practice for COTA, but consistently scores positive PD and finishes favorably at road courses.
Update: Brandon Brown will start 14th for Saturday’s race at COTA. Due to his starting position and equipment, he is now one of the riskier plays of the week considering some of the drivers stating behind him. Brown can still provide a decent finish for a driver in this price range, but is best utilized as a GPP play.
Brett Moffitt #02 (DraftKings: $5,700) – A quality value sleeper for Saturday’s race at COTA is former Truck Series champion Brett Moffitt. Moffitt placed 11th earlier this year at the Daytona Road Course and has eight overall top-20 finishes in 2021. The driver of the No. 02 Chevrolet was 24th in practice for COTA and depending on his qualifying position, he will have PD upside this week.
Update: Brett Moffitt will start 21st for this week’s race at COTA. Moffitt will likely finish around his starting position based on pre-race events while offering PD upside and cap flexibility as a decent option for this price range.
Tommy Joe Martins #44 (DraftKings: $5,400) – Tommy Joe Martins is one of the better Xfinity drivers that have provided cap flexibility all season and that will not change this week. Martins has seven top-20 finishes this season notably has scored top-20 finishes in past years at other road courses like Mid-Ohio and Road America. The driver of the No. 44 Chevrolet was 19th in practice for COTA and depending on his qualifying position, he might have a fair amount of PD upside with equipment capable of placing in the Top 20.
Update: The driver of the No. 44 Chevrolet will start 32nd at COTA. With plenty of PD upside and practice speeds indicating he will compete for a top-20 finish, Tommy Joe Martins is a great bargain value.
CORE 4 PICKS TO WIN:
- Austin Cindric
- A.J. Allmendinger
- Kyle Busch
- Daniel Hemric