Get ready to set your NASCAR DFS lineups as NASCAR crowns a champion at Phoenix Racetrack. This one-mile, low-inclined tri-oval asphalt track has hosted championship weekend since 2020. Phoenix Raceway has hosted more than 50 races since its first race in 1988, where Alan Kuwicki went on the lane of the victoire. Current driver Kevin Harvick leads all-time wins at Phoenix Raceway with his astonishing nine checkered flags. Harvick also holds the records for most top fives, top 10s and laps led, making him an instant favorite.
This week’s NASCAR DFS slate offers some tough decisions for owners. Which championship favorites are you paying for? Can a driver who is not in the running for the Championship be the best? Will a pilot surprise us all and arrive on the road to victory?
Cup Series Championship Race NASCAR DFS Choice:
NASCAR DFS drivers to pay for:
Chase Elliott (#9 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports)
The first driver you should think about paying for is Chase Elliot. Not only is Elliott in contention for his 2nd championship, but he also has some pretty incredible stats in Phoenix. In 13 starts, Chase has one win, five top fives and eight top 10s. The #9 Chevrolet driver has a 10.7 average at Phoenix Raceway, which is the 3rd best average among current drivers. He knows how to run ahead in Phoenix having led nearly 550 laps there in his career. Earlier in 2022 at Phoenix Raceway, Elliott finished 11th but led 50 laps just missing out on a top ten finish. This could be the weekend for Chase Elliott to score his 2nd championship and therefore you should think about paying him in your NASCAR DFS lineups.
Kyle Larson (Chevrolet #5, Hendrick Motorsports)
Not surprising that Kyle Larson is another driver you should consider paying for in your DFS queues. The #5 Chevrolet driver has 16 starts with one win, six top five finishes and nine top ten finishes. Larson’s average finish of 12.4 is 5th best among active Cup Series drivers. Much like Elliott, Larson knows how to get around there and has led nearly 200 laps in those 16 starts. Earlier this season, Larson suffered one of his many engine failures leading to an unusual 34th-place finish. Young Money also has added incentive as it could earn its owner Rick Hendrick another Owner’s Championship this weekend. Kyle Larson is definitely a driver you should pay for in your DFS lineups in Phoenix.
Denny Hamlin (Toyota #11, Joe Gibbs Racing)
After a disappointing week in Martinsville, Denny Hamlin is still a pay driver in Phoenix. On the desert track, Hamlin has 34 starts, two wins, 16 top fives and 20 top tens. He has the 2nd best average finishing position in Phoenix of 10.6. The No. 11 Toyota driver led nearly 900 laps at Phoenix Raceway, making him a threat to lead in any race there. Earlier in 2022, Hamlin regressed a bit with his 13th place finish in Phoenix. I don’t think that’s a very good indication of what could happen this weekend. Denny Hamlin is one driver you should be paying into your NASCAR DFS lineups.
Denny Hamlin WINS his way to the #Championship4!
—NASCAR on NBC (@NASCARonNBC) November 10, 2019
NASCAR DFS drivers to consider:
Kevin Harvick (#4 Ford, Stewart-Haas Racing)
Kevin Harvick in Phoenix is a no-brainer and definitely a driver to consider playing in DFS. Phoenix was the No. 4 Ford driver’s personal playground. In 29 starts, Harvick has nine wins, 28 top fives and 28 top tens. That’s a top ten percentage of almost 72%. “The Closer” has an 8.7 average finish at Phoenix, the best average finish at that track of any current Cup Series driver. With all those wins, there are plenty of laps led for Harvick. 1663 laps ahead in fact! In the 2022 Phoenix race, Harvick finished in 6th place but was really a factor in the top five all day. Kevin Harvick should be given special consideration when building your NASCAR DFS lineups for Phoenix.
Chase Briscoe (#14 Ford, Stewart-Haas Racing)
Harvick’s teammate Chasing Briscoe is also a driver to consider for this weekend in Phoenix. Briscoe has just three starts at Phoenix in the Cup Series, but that includes a victory earlier this season. The #14 Ford driver led 101 laps en route to his only win of 2022 and his first career Cup Series victory. Chase Briscoe doesn’t have much experience in Phoenix, but he should still be a driver to consider this weekend.
— FOX: NASCAR (@NASCARONFOX) March 13, 2022
NASCAR DFS driver to avoid:
Michael McDowell (#34 Ford, Front Row Motorsports)
A driver to avoid in Phoenix is Michael McDowell. The No. 34 Ford driver has never scored a top 10 finish in his 23 starts at Phoenix Raceway. In fact, McDowell never did better than 16th. McDowell’s average finish at this track of 30.8 is the 2nd worst among active Cup Series drivers. Earlier this season at Phoenix, McDowell finished 27th. Michael McDowell had the best season of his career, but you should still stay away from him this weekend.