Fantasy NASCAR

2021 Daytona Road Course, O’Reilly Auto Parts 253 At Daytona

Once again a restrictor plate track doomed me as a couple of my drivers were involved in the early race wreck at Daytona. Congratulations to Michael McDowell, who picked up his first ever win and is now qualified for this years playoffs. All in all a pretty disappointing weekend with the rain delay and the race not ending until late at night for most of us fans.


This week the series stays right in Daytona, but they will be running on the road course here this time. We shouldn’t see crashes with a third of the field involved this week, but the road course races can be tough on equipment and we will see quite a few cars getting moved by someone getting into them as they battle on the turns.

Chase Elliott: Last year’s champion is my pick to win this week’s race. He won here last August and has won his last four road course starts. Hard to go against someone who has stats like that, although it won’t be a cake walk for him. There are other drivers who want to end his streak and are capable of doing so.

Denny Hamlin: Denny finished second to Chase here last season and is one of the more consistent road course racers on the circuit. He has seven top five finishes in his last twelve starts on this type of track and showed last year that he will be a contender each and every week and this week will be no different.

Martin Truex Jr.: After getting involved in the early race wreck at Daytona last week, I’m sure this team is looking forward to this week’s race. Martin has two wins and two runner-up finishes in his last nine road course races. He has also finished in the top ten in eight of those nine races which shows that he has a handle on this type of racing and can stay out of trouble on the track.

Ryan Blaney: Ryan has shown that he knows how to race on this type of track also. He has finished in the top five in four of his last six road course starts including a win at Charlotte a few years ago. I think he just keeps getting better and better each week and should have another good run coming up this weekend.

Kyle Busch: After a very disappointing year for Kyle last season I’m sure he’s looking forward to this season and turning his fortunes around. He won the Busch Clash a couple of weeks ago on this track, so he should have a great handling car once again this weekend. Even though he hasn’t finished in the top ten in his last four road course starts he did have a run before that of nine top ten finishes in ten races.

Kurt Busch: Kurt is another driver who has run consistently well on this type of track throughout his career. Like Kyle, Kurt hasn’t quite had the results we would expect of him lately. He did finish fourth at Charlotte last October and hasn’t finished outside of the top twenty in his last nineteen starts which include thirteen top ten finishes in those races.

Kevin Harvick: No top ten finishes in the two road course races last season for Kevin, but once again like some of the other drivers, Kevin had seven top ten finishes in his eight starts before that including a win at Sonoma back in 2017. We have seen that he is one of the most consistent drivers on all types of track week in and week out.

Erik Jones: Erik is my dark horse this week as he usually runs well on this type of track, but now that he is on a new team this year we’ll have to see how they gel together. This is one of those races where there are only a couple of pit stops, so there isn’t a lot of chances to adjust the handling of the car. If the equipment doesn’t break I think he has a good run this week.

Alex Bowman: Alex has quietly made a name for himself on the road course tracks. Though still looking for his first road course win, Alex did finish second at Charlotte a couple of years ago and has never finished outside the top fifteen in his nine starts since joining Hendrick Motor Sports.


Driver Group Game Group A

  • Chase Elliott

Driver Group Game Group B

  • Kyle Busch
  • Alex Bowman

Driver Group Game Group C

  • Michael McDowell


  1. Chase Elliott
  2. Denny Hamlin
  3. Martin Truex Jr.
  4. Ryan Blaney
  5. Kyle Busch

Dark Horse: Erik Jones

Stay Away From: Christopher Bell

Big 18: Chase Elliott

11 replies on “2021 Daytona Road Course, O’Reilly Auto Parts 253 At Daytona”

No reason to pick him when he is running for an underfunded team. There are better drivers to choose.

OK…to each their own…I mean when he was in the #47 JTG Daugherty car, that team is obviously not the most funded , look at the issues they are having with getting funds to run races with Preece in the #37. But anytime there was a road course race, EVERY time, all the fantasy sites and all the betting sites said for the money, dollar for dollar, you have to put Allmendinger in your lineup. He’s not running a full Cup schedule so that would to me even make him more valuable to allocate a spot for him this week. Kaulig is not a chump team, I get their forte is Xfinity, but they didn’t “have” to make a jump to run some cup races, they chose to do this because I am guessing they had to funds to A) build/run select races this year and b) to hire Allmendinger a road course ace to run for them, and he has experience in the Cup Series, and is on a carrer hot streak with all time confidence levels while winning race for Kaulig.

Finished 7th in 2018 Cup Roval, won the 2019 and 2020 XFinity Roval Races (2020 was in rain also – so he has the experience to run and WIN in the rain if Daytona happens to get another rain system – which is always a high chance of)

Other 2020 Road Course races, Indy RC 4th, Road America 2nd, and the Daytona Road Course 4th.

So to me he seems like a no brain pick for a Dark Horse, Group C driver, but hey, what do I know?

He’s not full-time which means he starts towards the back at best. With no practice or qualifying that puts him in a bad position right from the git go. Also, teams that don’t run full-time tend to struggle in the pits. I really don’t see him doing a lot here. In his last 12 road course starts he started in the top 10, while his average finish in those races was around 19th place. I really don’t see him making a splash here this weekend.

Kyle in Group B?! Default he is in A… did you mean Kurt? If Kyle is in your B… can you give us a list of what custom driver groups you have?

Default in the DGG League has Kyle in group B. If you’re in a different league, your commissioner might have moved him.

Hey Jeff- Thanks for another season of your picks! I was wondering what you thought about some of the stronger road course drivers starting in the high 20s and 30s. Are these guys still worth a shot or is a strong finish from that far back unlikely? I have been looking at the numbers and it doesn’t appear there have been a lot of instances of this. Thoughts on guys like Blaney, Jones, Bowman, etc starting back?

It’s very tough to come all the way from the back on a road course, but there is a chance when you start the race there. It’s even tougher when you get sent to the back somewhere in the middle of the race. There isn’t much pit strategy you can use here either as there are only a couple of times you have to pit during the race, so it’s hard to get track position that way. I think the bumper is your best bet to get to the front.

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