Don’t wine because you missed these Sonoma fantasy picks

Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Harold Hinson Photograph-GFX

By Steve Young, @Stevietpfl

I hope everyone had a nice weekend off, but it’s time for some fantasy NASCAR. We head to Sonoma for some road course racing this weekend. This is one race we really focus on place differential instead of dominator points. Over the last ten races here, no pole sitter has led over 30% of the laps. Five of those ten races, the most laps led came from someone starting outside the top ten. In tournaments, I think you take a shot on AJ, but in cash games, I’m going to focus on place differential.

Kevin Harvick – $10,400 – Harvick has a really solid floor with his starting position of 25th, and he’s my favorite cash game play this weekend. In 15 career races here, Harvick has only finished worse than 25th three times. He has an average finish of 15th in his career here, and four top tens in the last six races. While pass differential isn’t used to score anymore, it’s still a great stat to look at on road courses. Harvick has a positive pass differential, and should have no problem picking up a top 15 finish this weekend.

Jimmie Johnson – $10,100 – There’s a lot of strategy that goes into a road course racing. This team always excels in strategy races, and Johnson has one of the best crew chiefs in NASCAR. Johnson has seven straight top tens here, and he won here in 2010. Johnson has struggled over the last six races this season, but this is a great place for him to get back on track. Johnson would score at least 39 fantasy points with a top ten finish, and that’s the type of floor I’m looking for in cash games this weekend.


Dale Earnhardt Jr. – $9,700 – Earnhardt showed a lot of speed in practices on Friday. This is what he tweeted out after qualifying “Car handled well in qualifying. Didn’t drive the cleanest lap but we backed up our speed from yesterday.” He really likes his car this weekend, and he’s run really well here over the last three races. Earnhardt Jr. has an average finish of 8th over his last four road courses, which is the third highest among active drivers. Like Johnson, he’s struggled recently, and he’s looking to bounce back this weekend.

Kasey Kahne – $8,700 – I’m really high on Hendrick Motorsports this weekend. Kahne has been really good at Sonoma, and has finished 14th or better in all four races here with Hendrick. Kahne has an average place differential of 17 over the last three races here. Kahne has the fourth highest quality pass percentage among active drivers, and I really like his chances for a top ten finish this weekend. A top ten finish would result in at least 40 fantasy points, and that would be very solid production at this price tag.

Greg Biffle – $6,700 – This is the first time this season I have liked Biffle, and I actually think he’s cash game playable. With him starting so far back, he presents a really solid floor. Biffle has 13 career races here, and he’s only finished worse than 32nd one time. He has an average finish of 14.85 in his career here. He has six top ten finishes in his last ten races here. I expect Biffle to be highly owned in cash games this weekend, but I really do think he’s the best play under $7k this weekend.



















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