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DFS NASCAR: Introductory Insights

Photo courtesy of NASCAR Media
DFS NASCAR: Introductory Insights
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DFS Fantasy NASCAR has unique appeal compared to some other DFS games. One item that makes the game stand out is its ease of use in creating a lineup. This is because you can pick six drivers from the field of 40 every week compared to DFS Baseball, where you must choose from players at multiple positions. It’s easy to dive right in and set a lineup. Since it is a much smaller field of selections in DFS NASCAR than something like MLB or NBA, it is easier to find the ones who stand out, but it also leads to high ownership percentages.

DraftKings makes it easy to participate in NASCAR games whether you are an experienced DFS player or someone new, due to the uncomplicated scoring system, which compiles points in four categories. For NASCAR, Draftkings scores the finishing position of each driver, the number of laps a driver has led, the amount of Fastest Laps a driver registered, and the Place Differential of each driver. Place Differential is how many positions ahead or behind a driver is from their starting position and is a crucial element to keep in mind when setting lineups.


When playing DraftKings NASCAR, you will encounter two types of games you are already familiar with, the tournaments and cash games. Tournaments are the best way for a beginner to start with DFS NASCAR, since it is possible that if you do not create a top lineup, you can outscore some other players and still cash out. Cash games rely more on building the absolute best lineup to succeed, since there is a lower margin of error due to the lower number of participants. While I encourage beginners to play tournaments at first, participating in both tournaments and cash games simultaneously allows players to get the most they can get out of DraftKings NASCAR games. The more you play, the more you learn quickly on the fly.

Once you enter a game, the focus becomes picking six drivers to form the team that will earn the most overall points. Drivers are sorted based on salary, which increases or decreases between races based on a combination of past historic performances at a track and recent performances during the ongoing season. When picking drivers, there are several factors to keep in mind such as Place Differential, in which drivers can score or lose additional points from finishing behind or ahead of their starting position. So initial starting positions are indeed significant. Additional research and knowing the different track types is essential to crafting top lineups as well, and we will give you what you need to succeed here at DailyRoto.com with in-depth race previews throughout the season.


The first and most useful resource to research is loop data, which are statistics gathering the overall performance of a driver for the duration of their career at a track. Loop data contains numerous sub-categories such as Laps Led, Average Finishing Position, and Percentage of Laps in the Top 15, all of which provide DFS players strong indications of which drivers excel at each track. Loop data provides players significant details on who can pick up plenty of points under the DraftKings scoring system. You’ll find a lot of loop data in our weekly previews, but individual categories can be viewed at sites such as the Motor Racing Network (mrn.com). .

Another important resource to rely on for setting your lineups is pre-race practice sessions. Before every race, most drivers take part in test sessions to see how well their car setups stack against the competition by posting lap times. DFS Players can view these lap times on NASCAR.com and ESPN.com and project which drivers have the fastest cars for the race. The final practice times are the ones that are often the most telling.

It’s important to know which drivers are strong at different track types because not all drivers are proficient on some tracks. The different track types include Intermediate tracks, which are the most common. Then there are Short tracks, which contain the highest lap counts and increased aggression, leading to crashes. Also there are Superspeedways, the most unpredictable track type, featuring “Pack racing” and “Drafting,” which put drivers on an equal playing fields while featuring wrecks that change the race results in seconds. Finally, there are Road Courses, which are technical tracks with left and right turns, with the lowest lap counts of all track types.  Knowing these track variations is crucial to coming up with successful strategies as the different tracks make racing results unique each week.

On the subject of wrecks, that is another unique element to DFS NASCAR games compared to other sports. Crashes are random, but always possible in every race and anyone can be eliminated from contention at any time, including more than half of the driver field on occasion, especially at superspeedways. Crashes can be caused because of a parts failure, aggression, or a driver losing control of their car. Think of wrecks like injuries in football or basketball, except on a higher scale since multiple drivers have a chance of being taken out in a second. Always expect the possibility of a wreck occurring every race simply because it is a regular part of the sport and can shatter a winning lineup at any time.


If you are just getting into DFS NASCAR, here are the things you want to know if you want to be competitive.

  • DO YOUR HOMEWORK – This means to investigate the loop data of all drivers, their past performances at all tracks, practice sessions to know how drivers stack up to their competition and use all of that to make the right choices for your lineup. Also, look at qualifying results to see if there are any drivers that inherit the potential to gain points from Place Differential.
  • KNOW THE TRACKS – This is important because different drivers are best at different race tracks. Distinctive strategies must be implemented for different race tracks. For example, at a Road Course, you want to find drivers that will pick up plenty of points from Place Differential. There are so few points gained from leading laps because of the low lap counts. The opposite holds true at Short Tracks, which provide a lot of bonus points because of the high number of laps in the race.
  • MANAGE YOUR SALARY EFFECTIVELY – The maximum salary cap is limited; therefore, you must think carefully about which drivers to use. While you can use a lot of drivers with high salaries in your lineup, it might force you to use drivers who very likely will start and park their car. Keeping your salary balanced is crucial to avoiding that situation. Don’t try to overload on superstars and be forced to use low-tier drivers that may not finish a race.
  • DIVERSIFY YOUR LINEUPS – Always enter multiple lineups into DFS NASCAR games because crashes and parts failures are inevitable. Part of picking a successful lineup is to choose drivers that will finish the entire race instead of wrecking or going to the garage. By entering multiple lineups, you increase your chances of winning, especially if you fill your various lineups with different drivers.
  • STICK WITH IT AND HAVE FUN – It is extremely rare for someone to win a DFS NASCAR game on their first try, but the more you play, the better you will become if you exercise patience in the face of wrecks and wild live scoring swings.

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