This article is part of our NASCAR DFS series.
Contender Boats 300
Location: Homestead, Fla.
Course: Homestead-Miami Speedway
Format: 1.5-mile oval
NASCAR Xfinity Contender Boats 300 Race Preview
Josh Berry captured an important win last week at Las Vegas to claim the first of the final four spots that will compete for the 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series championship. It was his third victory of the season, and it gives him the chance to race for his first series title at Phoenix. The seven remaining playoff contenders are all working to claim their spot alongside Berry this week with a win at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Just two chances remain for those drivers to ensure they are part of the championship finale, and the only way to make that a reality this week is by winning. If they fail to make the turn into Victory Lane on Saturday they'll have to wait to get the job done at Martinsville instead. This weekend's race will be the 29th time the Xfinity series races at Homestead's 1.5-mile oval. There have been 21 different race winners in that span and only five of those races have been won from pole. Everything is on the line for the championship contenders and that will make Saturday's contest one watch closely.
Key Stats at Homestead-Miami Speedway
- Number of races: 28
- Winners from pole: 5
- Winners from top-5 starters: 15
- Winners from top-10 starters: 21
- Winners from 21st or lower starters: 4
- Fastest race: 140.515 mph
Previous 10 Homestead Winners
2021 - Myatt Snider
2020 II - Chase Briscoe
2020 I - Harrison Burton
2019 - Tyler Reddick
2018 - Tyler Reddick
2017 - Cole Custer
2016 - Daniel Suarez
2015 - Kyle Larson
2014 - Matt Kenseth
2013 - Brad Keselowski
Homestead is a fast 1.5-mile oval that has been reprofiled multiple times throughout its existence. The oval features progressive banking in the turns that allow drivers to find different lanes as they search for the maximum speed from their machines. That feature also helps to promote passing and enables drivers to make adjustments to suit their handling throughout a fuel run. The old pavement at Homestead is rapidly becoming its most notable characteristic, though. The surface is one of the oldest on the schedule, and with age comes roughness. Tire wear will be a major factor for teams to come to terms with this weekend. Strategy decisions will be between fresh tires and track position, and those decisions can be thrown out the window if ill-timed cautions appear. A car on new tires will have a distinct speed advantage over those that do not, but will fresh tires get those drivers through traffic quickly enough to get to the front before laps run out? That is the question crew chiefs will be challenged with this weekend. No driver has won the Homestead Xfinity race starting lower than 10th since 2007, though. Fantasy players should therefore focus their selections this week on faster qualifiers.
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DraftKings Value Picks for the Contender Boats 300 (Based on Standard $50K Salary Cap)
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NASCAR DFS Picks for the Contender Boats 300
Lower-Risk Lineup ($50K Salary Cap)
This lower-risk lineup for Homestead focuses on both speed and consistency. One of the best in both of those categories recently is Noah Gragson. He has a comfortable margin in points, but is hungry to claim one of the remaining championship spots quickly with a win this weekend. He leads the series in wins this year with seven victories and has four top-fives in the last five races. With three top-fives from four Homestead starts, he is one of the top choices this week. Another top choice should be Austin Hill. Two victories this season have him firmly among the championship contenders, and another this week would put him into the final four. This will be his first series start at this track, but he won there in the Trucks in 2019. Daniel Hemric may not have the wins fantasy rosters would appreciate, but he remains a consistent finisher. He has 11 top-10 finishes this season with two in the last five races. Hemric also has four Homestead starts with two top-fives. He should be there again this week if he is able to avoid trouble. A bit further down the order, fantasy players might want to consider Alex Labbe. It hasn't been the greatest of seasons for Labbe, but he remains in the top 20 in points and brings the chance of some top-10 finishes at certain tracks. A top-15 should be well within his reach this week at Homestead. Kyle Weatherman is another driver hovering around the top 20 with top-15 potential. Weatherman has three prior Homestead starts with two resulting in DNFs. Like Weatherman, Kyle Sieg has been capable of top-20 and top-15 finishes this season. This will be his first series start at Homestead.
Higher-Risk Lineup ($50K Salary Cap)
The recent trend for AJ Allmendinger has been to complain profusely about his car early in the race only to eventually be at the front for the finish. That could be the case again this week as the team battles Homestead's rough surface, but fantasy players should expect him to get to the front by the finish yet again. He has four finishes of sixth or better in the last five races heading into this weekend and a best finish at the track of fourth. He led 45 laps in last year's race and will be working hard to win his way to Phoenix this weekend. Sheldon Creed finds himself in the higher-risk lineup because of his potential to win but not yet having done so. He has been getting closer to consistent top finishes as the season progresses, but he still seeks his breakthrough for that first series victory. Homestead will bring the best out of the drivers, and that is a good thing for Creed who should be able to differentiate himself. It will be his first visit to the track as an Xfinity driver, but does have two top-10s from three starts there in the Trucks. Another driver with the equipment to win is Landon Cassill. He is currently top of the non-playoff standings and has overcome a small rough patch. He enters this weekend's contest on the heels of three finishes of 11th or better and could be capable of scoring his first Homestead top-10 this Saturday. Jeremy Clements has been punching above his weight. He enters this week with two straight top-15s and four top-20s from the last five. His first Homestead top-10 came last season when he also led three laps. Parker Retzlaff caught my attention early in his part-time season, but has been facing the typical challenges of gaining experience and consistent finishes in one of NASCAR's top series. He'll try to make his eighth start of the season this week, but it will be his third 1.5-mile oval. He finished 21st in his last two starts and likely has a top-20 or even a top-15 within reach this week. Finally, Jeb Burton makes a nice bargain selection this week. Two top-10 finishes from his two prior appearances at this track make him one of the better values available this week. He may not have the same equipment this time around, but this is a track where the driver can make the difference, and he has shown that he can rise to the occasion.