Last week we saw Chase Elliott win his first ever NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series race. Elliott held off a furious charge from defending champion Martin Truex Jr. and got Hendricks Motorsports back into Victory Lane. This week the series heads to Michigan International Speedway for the second time this year. Last time out in Michigan, Clint Bowyer held off his teammate to take the victory. Will the Stewart-Haas boys be dominate once again or will the Toyotas have something to say about it? Lets dive right in and see what the DPA has in store for our Optimal lineups this week.
Blue Chip Studs
Kevin Harvick | #4 | $12,700
Harvick and the #4 Busch Light / Mobil 1 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford will start from the 3rd starting position on Sunday. Harvick was dominant when the drivers took the track back in June here and it looks like that could be the case again today. He had the 6th fastest 10 lap average and turned the 4th fastest lap in the final practice.
Kyle Larson | #42 | $11,800
Larson and the #42 DC Solar Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet will start from the 17th starting position on Sunday. Larson finished 28th here back in June, but had won the 3 previous races at Michigan. Larson was 3rd fastest in the 10 lap average category and was 5th fastest in the final practice. Bad luck caused his poor finish last time in Michigan, but with Lady luck back on his side, Larson should have the car to beat.
Clint Bowyer | #14 | $11,000
Bowyer and the #14 Haas 30 Years of the VF1 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford held off his teammate Kevin Harvick to capture the victory the last time the Monster Energy Series visited Michigan. Bowyer qualified 16th for the race on Sunday and was 7th fastest in the 10 lap average category. Stewart-Haas cars finished 1st, 2nd, and 3rd at the last race and there is no indication that any other team can match their horsepower, with the exception of Denny Hamlin..
Denny Hamlin | #11 | $10,100
Hamlin and the #11 FedEx Office Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota finished 12th last time out at Michigan, but it appears they have found something under the hood. Hamlin turned the fastest lap in qualifying and dominated all three practice sessions. Hamlin has done very little to speak of this year on the track and has been very disappointing. That could change today as it seems his team learned a lot at the last race hear.
Erik Jones | #20 | $9,400
Jones and the #20 Dewalt Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota will start from the 4th starting position on Sunday. Jones seems to have his Dewalt Toyota tuned in to the track as he was the fastest driver in the 10 lap average category during the final practice. Jones has been on a roll as of late and should have a solid day and a great chance at finding himself in victory lane.
Daniel Suarez | #19 | $8,400
Suarez and the #19 Stanley Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota will start from the rear of the field on Sunday. Suarez had the 4th fastest car in the 10 lap average category during the final practice, and will be looking to carry over some momentum from last week’s great finish at Watkins Glen. Starting from dead last will give Suarez a really good shot at gaining maximum points as he makes his way through the field. As I’m optimistic for a top 15 finish, Suarez will be a stone cold lock for me today.
Jamie McMurray | #1 | $8,000
McMurray and the #1 McDonald’s/Cessna Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet will be looking for their sixth straight top 10 finish at Michigan when they roll off today. McMurray has been a picture of consistency at Michigan over the last 3 years and should be again today. He usually burns me when I recommend him, so this week I will reverse the whammy and make him the DPA Play of the Day.
AJ Allmendinger | #47 | $7,100
Allmendinger and the #47 Kroger Click List JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet will start from the 25th starting position on Sunday. Allmendinger has not been very good as of late and has not shown a lot of promise. However, starting 25th today should allow Allmendinger to gain valuable points and position on the track. We hope this will translate to a top 15 finish.
Paul Menard | #21 | $7,600
Menard and the #21 Earn While You Learn/Newfordtech.com Wood Brothers Racing Ford will start from the 14th starting position on Sunday. Menard had the 11th fastest lap during the final practice and was 8th fastest in the second practice session. Menard finished 5th here back in June, and will be looking to put the Woods Brothers Ford back in the top 5 this week.
Bryan Holland is a senior NASCAR writer for Daily Play Action with years of success in both GPPs and Cash Games on FanDuel. He reserves the right to change his plays at any time without notice and without discretion.