The field is set for Sunday’s Trucks race with Sheldon Creed and Matt Crafton on the front row. Let’s take a look at this week’s race with our NASCAR DFS preview for the Trucks series, and dive into the top NASCAR DFS picks, on DraftKings, for the In It To Win It 200 at Darlington.
In It To Win It 200 NASCAR DFS Picks for DraftKings
Sheldon Creed, 1st ($10,900)
Spring’s Darlington winner returns to defend his crown from the pole as the second race in the 2021 Trucks playoffs gets underway on Sunday. Starting 16th in May, Creed worked his way up to the top 10 by the end of the first segment. Holding position throughout the race, he took advantage of a myriad of yellow flags, and subsequent restarts, before finally grabbing the lead on lap 140. His ascent was slow but to be expected of anything starting in the teens, and probably doesn’t race to the lead if not for the flood of late cautions.
However, on Sunday, this won’t be his concern as he starts from the pole. Talk is picking up among Cup drivers about how this track could become even tougher to pass, thanks to the Turn-2 repave job that recently took place. If that’s the case, expect a driver of Creed’s talent, paired with his vehicle, to hold the lead the bulk of the afternoon.
John Hunter Nemechek, 6th ($11,300)
Sunday’s betting favorite (+250) at BetMGM, finds himself starting sixth in a crowded field of contenders. Nemechek managed to lead the most laps this past spring (65) thanks in part to starting position but a truck capable of long-run speed as well. Long-run speed and performance have been the hallmark of this No. 4 team at intermediate ovals this season with three victories coming from Las Vegas, Charlotte and Texas; and a strong third-place finish at Atlanta. Nemechek is expensive and with just 147 laps on tap for Sunday, he will need to be the top dominator to pay off. However, that’s been a task he has shown capable of doing all season long.
Ryan Truex, 19th ($4,900)
In the spring, Truex scored an 11th-place finish here at Darlington. Notable, but then again, a driver can’t be credited with luck on lap 130 for not getting caught up in the big one. What is notable, is this salary for a driver who is on a bit of a roll. Momentum is what one will make of it, even if it’s just for morale, but Truex comes into Darlington on the heels of four straight top-20 finishes. Compared to the season he started with, this is an improvement in the right direction. Not to mention, at this salary, Truex is the most viable punt option on the board. He carries top-20 upside, and unlike other punts, isn’t an immediate threat to get lapped and stuck in the 30s or just start and park altogether.
Tyler Ankrum, 25th ($9,000)
A top-15 driver for the majority of 2021, Ankrum finds himself mired in the 20s thanks to a poor finish at Gateway. With the expected attrition of this race, based on the 10 separate cautions involving 31 drivers, DFS players need access to security via place differential and finishing position. Ankrum offers that, in an upper-echelon vehicle, for a driver who’s finished top-14 in back-to-back Darlington events.
Lawless Alan, 31st ($6,300)
The driver with the name that feels so made up, it had to come from a movie that went straight to VHS 30 years ago, Alan makes his sixth start of the 2021 season. In his five previous starts, Alan drove for Josh Reaume in the No. 34 with results that would mirror the quality of that Truck. However, Alan finds himself in the No. 45 for Al Niece this Sunday, a considerable upgrade. When Erik Darnell drove this Truck back at Darlington in May, he was able to survive the carnage and finish 17th. Another top-20 shouldn’t be out of the question for the No. 45 this Sunday with Alan behind the wheel. If optimism abounds for Truex in another Niece Truck, then it should mirror itself in the No. 45 for Alan as well.
Parker Kligerman, 34th ($9,600)
If attrition is on the menu for Sunday, then Kligerman fits the bill of a driver DFS players will want. For those just perusing box scores, Kligerman may become a fade candidate based on his 26th place finish here in the Spring combined with this salary. However, through Kligerman’s seven races in 2021, that DFS at Darlington was his only one this season. Mind you, Kligerman was part of the 18-car pile-up on lap 130 that nearly impacted half of the field. With that many vehicles involved, a driver truly has nowhere to go, especially when it’s the leaders who wreck one another on a restart.
In every other race this season, he’s finished 17th or better, including an eighth-place effort at Las Vegas. While Charlie Henderson’s equipment is the greatest, it’s still better than half of the field when Kligerman is behind the wheel. Expect another top-20 finish out of Kligerman on Sunday.
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