The field is set for Saturday’s Trucks Series race with John Hunter Nemechek and Kyle Busch on the front row. Let’s jump into the top NASCAR DFS picks for DraftKings and FanDuel lineups for the Wise Power 200 at Kansas Speedway.
NASCAR DFS Picks, Wise Power 200
John Hunter Nemechek, 1st ($10,100 DraftKings)
Kyle Busch, 2nd ($15,000 DraftKings)
With results based on the previous race at Richmond, Nemechek and Busch are upfront. One of these two is going to probably lead the entire first segment, and one of these two is probably going to lead the majority of the 134 laps. Salary-wise, with a near $5,000 chasm between the teammates, it’s easy to see who has the easier path to hitting and exceeding value. However, Busch is good enough to do what he needs to do to make his salary work.
Busch has three starts in 2021. In those three starts, his finishes are second, first and second. However, at Atlanta he only led 16 laps but started 29th. In the next race at Atlanta, Busch started second and led 102 laps. Finally, in the previous race at Richmond, he started 12th and only led 26 laps. So in three starts, Busch has only come close to exceeding value once. Remember, with this $15,000 salary, simply hitting his value mark isn’t going to cut it in tournaments.
As per Nemechek, he only has one finish worse than seventh (Bristol Dirt — 39th) and has won at both Las Vegas and Richmond. If looking at just races with Busch in the field, Nemechek has finished first at Las Vegas, third at Atlanta and first at Richmond. In those three events, Nemechek led 94 laps from the third starting position at Atlanta, led 21 laps from the pole at Atlanta and 114 laps at Richmond after starting 18th. The deciding factor is going to be the price on Saturday. All things considered, Nemechek is at a discount simply because Busch is in this field.
Zane Smith, 9th ($9,100)
For those scouring box scores, nothing about Smith’s three performances at Kansas last year is going to sway them into playing him. With three starts in the top 10, Smith managed to finish sixth, ninth and 11th. However, what’s buried in the numbers is that Smith actually led the most combined laps (104) in those three events. Furthermore, he led laps in all three races, so it’s not as if he had an outlier in one event that skewed these numbers. The No. 21 team had something figured out in the second and third Kansas events with chances to win before dropping late. Perhaps they can rekindle that magic and find their way to the front once more.
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Hailie Deegan, 20th ($5,300)
It took six races into the season, but Deegan is finally starting to show a hair of consistency. Following finishes of 24th, 28th and 28th to open the Trucks Season, Deegan is crawling forward now, finishing 21st at Atlanta, 19th at Bristol and 17th at Richmond. Perhaps the move from ARCA to Trucks was a bit more than Deegan was expecting. Regardless, she might be making a turn, for as well as she can in this David Gilliland Truck.
The main reason to make this case for Deegan is her salary, though. In her price range, the options are bad, no-good, terrible. Deegan offers nothing better than a 16th-place finish like last year in the third Kansas race. With everyone else, it’s hope and pray for attrition so that someone like Chase Purdy can finish in the teens, Bret Holmes is actually competitive, or Carson Hocevar doesn’t fall backward.
Grant Enfinger, 29th ($10,500 DraftKings)
It really feels like DraftKings is letting the presence of Busch being in this race impact salaries way too much. Case in point, Enfinger is a screaming value at less than $11,000. It is all but a certainty that Enfinger is going to race his way into the top 10. It is where he has been all season, with no finish worse than 11th in five races. It is where he was last year in the three Kansas Trucks races, with finishes of third, third and fourth.
Yes, you read that right. Due to the COVID-impacted schedule, the Trucks Series raced at Kansas three times last season. Enfinger displayed great consistency in those three races, despite nine races occurring between the second and third Kansas events. Although he led just one total lap in those three events, he finished top five in all three races. With place-differential in hand, Enfinger does not need to show up and wrangle the lead away. Another top-10 finish provides everything, especially in cash games.
Chase Briscoe, 30th ($11,500)
Briscoe returns to the Trucks Series taking over Cory Roper’s No. 04 which has been a backmarker de jour in 2021. While it’s not on the same dismal level as what Jennifer Jo Cobb is doing this season, Roper’s vehicle just hasn’t had the performance to compete for anything better than a finish in the mid-20s.
Granted, Briscoe would not take a vehicle he feels that he can’t compete in. He drove this Truck at Bristol and finished fifth after starting 33rd. However, Briscoe had luck, attrition and dirt-race experience on his side in that endeavor. On Saturday, it’s going to take every ounce of Briscoe’s talent to get this car near the top 15. At $11,500 on DraftKings, that salary is too steep for a driver that will finish 13th or 14th best-case scenario.
Ross Chastain, 34th ($12,000)
Chastain makes his second Trucks start of the 2021 season after finishing eighth at Atlanta. Now in a similar position, Chastain will attempt to climb the field from 34th instead of dead last. Chastain’s path to being optimal at this salary is tough, but with his place differential potential, gamers don’t need much extra from Chastain. The only question is can Chastain actually get those extra points?
Could he grab some fastest laps while he moves through the field, possibly? Chastain leading laps though is the harder sell. Even in his victory in 2019, he only led five laps. For reference, go back to that seventh-place finish at Atlanta. Chastain led zero laps and only had two fastest laps out of 130. This No. 44 Niece Truck is not fantastic, and outside of Chastain’s start at Atlanta, its best finish was 26th at Richmond. Chastain cannot project to lead any laps on Saturday, and if he gets fastest laps, they’ll be minimal.
With a top-10 finish and a few fastest laps, Chastain will be hovering around 70 fantasy points at this weekend’s Wise Power 200.
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