1) Kyle Larson (Starting – 9th)
Michigan Fantasy Spin – Kyle Larson will be tough to beat at Michigan. He’s won the last two races here and currently has a three-race win streak at 2.0 mile ovals. This year at high-speed intermediate tracks he’s been a super elite performer. On this track type minus Charlotte where he had trouble, he has a 2.3 average result and has finished in the top two in 6 of the 7 races. Larson has been in a slump in recent races but racing at Michigan should be like medicine. On Sunday look for him to finish in the top five and compete for the win. In Happy Hour Larson had the best ten lap average.
Michigan Track History – Kyle Larson has been the class of the field in recent Michigan races. Over the last three races he has the best driver rating, best average finish (1.7), best average running position (4.3) and has finished in the top 3 every race. In June Larson had a strong showing and raced his way to victory lane. I will note if there wasn’t a late caution he probably wouldn’t have won. In addition to finishing first he earned the best driver rating, had a 3rd place average running position and led 96 laps. Last August he also had a great car but had to rely on a late caution to take the lead. Additionally in the race he earned the best driver rating, had a 6th place average running position and led a race high 41 laps. In spring 2016 when the “lowest down force package” made it’s debut he finished 3rd, earned the 3rd best driver rating, and had a 4th place average running position.
Yahoo B Driver / DraftKings $10,300
2) Martin Truex Jr. (Starting – 13th)
Michigan Fantasy Spin – Martin Truex Jr. will be tough to beat at Michigan. On Sunday I would look for him to finish in the top five, and compete for the win. There’s a lot of variables to like about him this weekend. He’s been the class of the field at intermediate tracks this season, has tons of momentum, and he was extremely strong earlier this year. In Happy Hour his car was fast. He had the 2nd quickest overall speed and the 4th best ten lap average.
Michigan Track History – Martin Truex Jr. has been a very strong performer at Michigan. In 3 of the last 5 races he’s finished in the top 6. In the two he finished outside of that range he had a misleading result. Earlier this year at Michigan he won Stage #1, won Stage #2, earned the 2nd best driver rating, had a 4th place average running position, finished 6th and led 62 laps. It should also be noted he ran a quarter of the fastest laps (50). In 2016 he was top ten good but neither was incident free. Last August he had major problems on pit road which damaged his car and it led to him finishing 20th. In spring 2016 he had a great car but finished a misleading 12th. Performance wise he likely had one of the best cars but while he was running in 2nd he spun and damaged his car. Also late in the race he lost 5 positions. In 2015 he finished 3rd both races.
Yahoo A Driver / DraftKings $10,600
Further Recommended Reading – Practice Notes / Practice Speeds Center, Speed Cheat Sheet, Likely Finish Ranges, DraftKings Playability Value Chart/ Projected Base Scores, Starting Lineup
3) Kyle Busch (Starting – 6th)
Michigan Fantasy Spin – Michigan hasn’t been the friendliest track to Kyle Busch, but he should be on your short list of favorites. He’s running extremely well at the moment and has been a serious factor to win the last five straight races. When you combine that with how well he ran at Michigan earlier this year then you know he’ll be good. In recent races at high-speed intermediate tracks Busch has been extremely strong. Over the last four races on this track type he has a 4.8 average finish and a 3.5 average running position. In Happy Hour Busch had the 5th quickest overall lap and the 7th best ten lap average. On Sunday I would look for Busch to finish in the top five and compete for the win, if he has an incident free race.
Michigan Track History – As you read above Michigan hasn’t been the friendliest track to Kyle Busch. In 5 of the last 8 races at this 2.0 mile oval he’s had major problems and has finished 31st or worse. At Michigan he typically runs really well, but trouble isn’t far away. This spring Busch had a great car and if there wasn’t a late caution I think he would’ve raced his way to victory lane. When the checkered flag waved he finished 7th, had a 3rd place average running position, earned the 3rd best driver rating and led 40 laps. In 2016 neither race was incident free for him. Last August he spun early on lap 26, that race lacked cautions so he was only able to rally up to a 19th place result. In spring 2016 he was top ten good but his engine blew up on lap 53 which led to a 40th place finish.
Yahoo A Driver / DraftKings $10,500