Kevin Harvick fantasy NASCAR
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Kevin Harvick – Kevin Harvick will be a favorite to win the Las Vegas Kobalt 400. He runs well here and is the defending champion. Last year Kevin Harvick started in 18th and raced his way to victory lane. His car was fast in traffic and strong over long runs. I will note I believe Jimmie Johnson had the best car but after the #48 was out of the picture Harvick unquestionably was the driver to beat. When the checkered flag waved Harvick finished 1st, earned the best driver rating, had a 4th place average running position and led a race high 142 laps. In 2014 at Las Vegas Kevin Harvick had one of the fastest cars. Unfortunately we don’t know exactly how good he was because his race wasn’t incident free. In the event he started in 16th and on lap 122 he closed in on Kyle Busch for the lead. On lap 130 he passed him and drove away. With 73 laps to go his race went downhill because he was off pace and went to the garage because of brake rotor issues. Performance wise he led 23 laps and if his afternoon was incident free he looked like a lock for a top three finish. In 2013 he had a solid performance. He started 8th, finished 9th, earned the 9th best driver rating and had a 7th place average running position. In 2012 at Las Vegas Harvick started in 3rd, had an average running position of 7th and finished 11th. For the first 200 laps he ran exclusively in the top 7. At Atlanta Kevin Harvick had the best car but lost the race on strategy and a bad restart. In that event he earned the best driver rating, led 131 laps and finished 6th. (Yahoo A Driver) (DraftKings – $10,500)

Jimmie Johnson – Jimmie Johnson will be a good fantasy NASCAR pick to win at Las Vegas. It’s a great track for him and he always runs well here. He’s a four-time champion and has finished in the top ten 57% percent of the time. Last year Jimmie Johnson had a great car but finished 41st. I will note that result deserves an asterisk mark. Performance wise I thought Johnson had the best car but his race wasn’t incident free. His first issue came on lap 91 while he was leading. At that time he had a loose right front and pitted which dropped him to the mid-thirties, one lap down. He still remained fast but the problems didn’t stop. On lap 172 he had a tire pop which sent him hard into the wall. After that you could stick a fork in him. In the race Johnson started in 9th and led 45 laps. That’s extremely impressive when you note he had his first problem on lap 91. In 2014 Johnson ran well. He earned the 2nd best driver rating, had a 3rd place average running position (best), finished 6th and led 34 laps. Except for the final run of the event he essentially ran in the top three all race long. In 2013 Johnson had a very strong car. He had a 3rd place average running position, finished 6th and led the second most laps (66). His driver rating ranked as the second best. In 2012 Johnson started in the rear of the field. He didn’t stay back for long. In just 99 laps he raced his way up to the lead. The only driver who could stand in his way that day was Tony Stewart. The main difference between him and Smoke was that Stewart was much better on restarts. As a result Johnson finished 2nd and earned the 3rd best driver rating. In 2010 Johnson won his most recent race at Las Vegas. At Atlanta with the 2016 rules package Johnson had a great afternoon and raced his way to victory lane. In that race he led 52 laps and had a 4.4 average running position. (Yahoo A Driver)(DraftKings – $10,300)

Further Recommended Reading – Las Vegas Front Runner Rankings, Las Vegas Mid Pack Predictions, Las Vegas Scouting Report, DraftKings Las Vegas Points

Dale Earnhardt Jr. – Dale Earnhardt Jr. deserves strong fantasy NASCAR consideration at Las Vegas. It’s a great track for him and he currently has the longest active top ten streak (5). Since 2007 only once has he finished outside the top 11. Over the last four years he’s been a stellar Las Vegas performer. Over this stretch he has the best driver rating, best average finish (5.8), best average running position (6.0) and has led 125 laps. Last year he had a strong showing and the main number you need to know about him is 4. He started 4th, finished 4th and led 4 laps. Also in the race it should be noted he earned the 2nd best driver rating and had a 3rd place average running position. In 2014 if he had another splash of fuel he would’ve raced his way to victory lane. He finished 2nd, earned the 3rd best driver rating and led 51 laps. The key moment for him in the race came with 45 laps to go when a caution came out and he elected not to pit. That got him the lead and he remained in front of the pack until he stumbled on fuel during the final lap. In 2013 Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished 7th, had a 7th place average running position and earned the 6th best driver rating. In 2012 at Sin City Earnhardt Jr. had a very strong car. He started on the outside of the front row (qualified 4th) and led 70 laps. That lap led total was greater than all the laps he led during the 2011 season. While Junior was up front no one could touch him. This team did make a serious mistake in the race though. When the second caution came out while he was leading he took four tires and basically everyone else took two. That got him mired back in traffic and led to a 10th place finish. At Atlanta Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished 2nd and had a 6.9 average running position. (Yahoo A Driver)(DraftKings – $9,000)

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