The NASCAR Cup Series is back at Daytona this weekend for the Coke Zero 400! Kevin Harvick is coming off his 7th win of the year which now puts him alone at the top of the list for wins, points, and laps led in 2020. He has been the best racer for basically the entire year and he is being treated as such this week as he is the only racer to have a 1X multiplier. The multiplier value makes a big difference in NASCAR so I am going to have to fade him this week. One guy I will not be fading this week is the man who currently is 2nd in the series cup standings.
Coke Zero 400 Top Picks
Denny Hamlin (1.15X)
While Hamlin is 2nd in the cup standings, he is coming off a really disappointing race in which he finished 19th at the Drydene 311, race 2. It was the worst finish he has had in a month. However, given how good Hamlin was before this, I have a hard time believing this will become a trend especially with this race being at Daytona. In his previous six races, Hamlin finished 1st, 2nd, 2nd, 6th, 2nd, and 1st. In these races, he averaged 74.92 fantasy points per event, and when you factor in his 1.15X multiplier that total goes up to 86.16. This is more of the Hamlin you should expect to see on Saturday.
While Hamlin had one hiccup in 2019 at Daytona when he finished in 26th, in his other three previous races that he finished, he came in 1st, 1st, and 3rd. Hamlin feels like a fantastic bet to be in the top three on Saturday and given the fact you get him at 1.15X, he is a steal and should be locked into everyone’s lineups.
Austin Dillon (1.45X)
Since winning his first race of the year on July 19th at the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500, Dillon has had a nice run for a guy with his multiplier. In his next races, he had two subpar races where he finished 27th and 31st. In the other four though, he finished in 13th, 8th, 15th, and 9th. In his past seven races, he averaged 61.35 fantasy points per event and when you factor in his juicy 1.45X multiplier, that goes up to 88.96. This is including two bad performances he had where he scored 18.35 and 32.85 fantasy points respectively. Now being at Dayton, Dillon is poised to finish closer to the top of the leaderboard on Saturday.
In the past four races Dillon has finished at Dayton, he placed in 12th, 16th, 9th, and in 1st back in 2018. Dillon is a proven racer who can perform on the biggest stages and Daytona is one of those big stages. With his multiplier being at 1.45X, he does not have to land in the top five to provide good value for your lineup. If he gets in the top 10 or 15, he will give you a big boost. Given his history at Daytona and the recent races he’s been in, I believe he is a borderline lock to finish at least top 15.
Jimmie Johnson (1.4X)
It has been a bit of a rollercoaster year on the track for Jimmie Johnson. He has some stretches where he is consistently near the top of the leaderboard and others where he struggles to crack the top 25. Lately, it has been the former for Johnson. In his last six races, he’s finished 3rd, 7th, 4th, 11th, 12th, and 12th. Over this stretch, he averaged 60.18 fantasy points per event and when you factor in his multiplier of 1.4X, the average goes up to 84.25. This is the type of racing stretch where you are fortunate to snag up Johnson at 1.4X, especially given the fact he is racing at Daytona.
Johnson is a veteran racer that has raced at Daytona 38 times in his career dating all the way back to 2002. He has won at Daytona three times and he even has a good recent track record there. In the last three races in which he didn’t crash, Johnson finished 3rd, 9th, and 12th. If Johnson can finish in that range again on Saturday, he is well worth having in your lineup at 1.4X.
This article expresses the personal views of the writer and does not reflect the view(s) of SuperDraft in any way.
Featured Image Source: John K Harrelson, NKP