NASCAR Xfinity DFS and Betting Preview: Kansas. Time to follow the yellow brick road as we return to Kansas Motor Speedway for a pivotal playoff race for the NASCAR Xfinity Series. It’s time to hit the jackpot for the Kansas Lottery 300.
The playoffs are winding down as eight drivers are still alive to race for the final four spots in the championship race. Only two more chances for these drivers to step up and secure their spot in the title race at Phoenix.
No time to waste: let’s get into the nugs.
There’s no place like home for Brandon Jones. He’s actually from Atlanta, but he races like Kansas is his home racetrack as he has won 2 of the last 3 races here. Statistically, Kansas is one of Jones’s best racetracks.
Jones is winless this season and is on the outside looking in regarding the playoff cut line. He likely needs to win one of the next two races to advance to the Championship 4.
The Gibbs guys have been the best at the 1.5’s throughout the 2021 campaign- especially the #54 Gibbs guy. It’s been piloted to victory lane by several Gibbs guys this year. I’m not a Gibbs guy, but that car is so fast, I bet I could strap in and do better than half the field.
The literal Gibbs guy (Ty the Prodigy) will pilot the #54 this weekend and will look to go back-to-back for the #54 as John Hunter Nemechek drove his illegal car to victory lane last weekend at Texas. I don’t care what anybody says: that car was illegal.
I also had Daniel Hemric as one of my picks to win that race. He finished 2nd. Pain.
Speaking of Hemric, how many laps will he lead this time en route to a seemingly for-sure win that collapses in the final moments? He has made me sick all season long. In his last three Kansas starts, his finishes are 2nd, 7th, and 2nd.
Justin Allgaier has been outstanding at the 1.5’s all season long, with an average finish of 3.8 in his last four races (excluding Darlington). FYI, I know Darlington and Nashville are technically considered 1.5 intermediates, but I do not use them in my averages because the tracks are so vastly different than the typical 1.5 like Kansas, Vegas, Texas, etc.
While JR Motorsports’ strong collective team success at the intermediates should be considered, it also must be considered that Toyota has won 10 of the last 14 Kansas races. Chevrolet has only won once in that span with John Hunter Nemechek in 2018.
Team Penske hasn’t won at Kansas since Brad Keselowski won here in 2011. Austin Cindric has been fast on the intermediates but has consistently trailed either the #54, #7, and #18 on overall speed on the 1.5’s throughout the season.
Chase Briscoe is the defending champion of this race, as his SHR team brought out-of-this-world speed (comparable to the #54 in 2021) to the intermediates in 2020. The driver made a pretty big difference too, considering how terrible Riley Herbst has been this season in the same equipment.
But don’t get me started on that. Let’s stay on track with winners and get right into it.
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NASCAR Xfinity DFS Kansas Picks for DraftKings
Ty Gibbs: #54 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota – $11,200
For once in my life (because I’m usually never wrong- ever), I learned my lesson last week by fading the #54 at a 1.5-mile racetrack. Doesn’t matter if Dale Tanhardt is driving or if John Hunter Nemechek is driving. The car has almost a full second on the field.
On 1.5’s in 2021, excluding Ty Dillon’s 2 disastrous starts to open the season, here are all the finishes by the #54 car: 2nd, 1st, 1st, 1st, 11th, 1st. It only makes it even tastier when you consider that Ty Gibbs is starting from 10th. Most of the other probable race-winning contenders will start in the Top 5.
I expect Gibbs to fly through the field, lead laps and be a serious threat to steal this race from the playoff drivers. Book Ty Gibbs and the #54 as my top play.
Jeremy Clements: #51 Jeremy Clements Racing Chevrolet – $6,800
This team has truly excelled on the intermediates this season. An early pileup at Vegas and a tough run at Texas truly dilute the statistics to back that up, but this team has made some serious strides as a playoff team in 2021, and it started at the intermediates.
In 6 races at 1.5’s before the two aforementioned disasters in the playoffs took place, Clements recorded 3 Top 10’s and no finish worse than 17th. I think this is an excellent spot for Clements as his cheap price is representative of his recent bad luck.
If you dig deeper here, Kansas has notably been an excellent track for JC and this team. In his last 4 starts here, he has recorded 4 Top 15’s and 2 Top 10’s- a worst of 15th and a best of 6th.
Clements starts 19th on Saturday and is due to advance his positioning and record a fringe Top 10 finish with a chance at a Top 5 run.
Garrett Smithley: #17 SS Green Light Racing Chevrolet – $7,400
Smithley enters this field as a sub due to very unfortunate circumstances surrounding Carson Ware. Fortunately for Smithley, he gets an opportunity to perform in a decent racecar.
Smithley has 3 starts in this ride on the season. He finished 24th, 25th, and 19th. Two of those finishes were at 1.5’s.
He starts back in 39th on Saturday and is an outstanding punt play due to his place-differential potential. Smithley isn’t a household name, and due to his limited opportunities, I believe many will be scared of playing him.
But, people forget (or simply do not know) that Smithley has four years of full-time experience in the Xfinity Series. He constantly recorded Top 25’s throughout those years, and that’s essentially all you need for Smithley to pay off if you put him in your lineups.
Book Smithley as an excellent, low-risk punt play with a high ceiling and a low floor.
Brandon Jones: #19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota – $9,300
As stated earlier, Kansas has been very kind to Jones over the last couple of years. In 3 consecutive races at Kansas, Jones has had a Top 3 racecar.
Jones was in the mix hanging with Chase Briscoe in this race last year before a late-race massive crash impacted his car with enough damage to affect him aerodynamically. He still finished 9th.
In the previous 2 races, he left Kansas victorious. It seems like it’s a “too good to be true” deal here, but the statistics don’t lie.
Jones is winless in 2021, but he does have 2 Top 3 finishes on 1.5’s this season, and at Las Vegas and Michigan- two tracks that compare nicely with Kansas, he has finishes of 3rd, 2nd, and 6th.
I advise playing a solid amount of Allgaier and Hemric as well, but Jones could be a home-run play because he starts 9th and has the potential to run Top 3 and win this weekend. At the price of $9,300, I think Brandon Jones could be the steal of the weekend.
NASCAR Xfinity Best Bets
Ty Gibbs +350
Daniel Hemric +700 (I know. I’m stubborn. Ready for more pain.)
Brandon Jones +1200
Ty Gibbs +100
Brandon Jones +340
Michael Annett +400
NASFinity H2H Parlay Special; 4-Leg H2H Parlay Pays out +1244 odds ($100 Bet Wins $1,244):
Gibbs over Cindric -110
Jones over H. Burton +105
Allgaier over Allmendinger -125
Annett over J. Burton -110