Happy Fourth of July! The NASCAR Cup Series is celebrating the nation’s independence by going road racing at a patriotically named track — Road America. That’s right, the third road course race of the year is happening this year after Sonoma was just two races ago. It was the same Fourth of July weekend last year that the Cup Series had Road America on the schedule for the first time in 65 years. Before the race happens on Sunday July 3rd, we need to start researching the field for NASCAR DFS on DraftKings and Fanduel. That’s just what we’re going to do in this Race Guide with a look at not only DFS strategy but also weather for Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, Goodyear tire notes, Track Layout notes for Road America, and all of the driver averages and stats you can handle for all drivers in the field.

Road America Track Layout

One of the absolute best road courses in the country, Road America is a master class in how to design a terrain-dependent layout. The just-over-four-mile lap rises and falls based on the rolling hills of eastern Wisconsin. It also winds through open land and wood areas just the same over the course of the 14 turns that make up a lap. Despite it being in a relatively open area, there isn’t a ton of run-off if drivers misjudge the turns or the braking zones and where there is run-off, it’s general filled with gravel. At 4.048 miles per circuit, it’s the longest road course on the NASCAR Cup schedule and it’s a genuine mix of the speed of Watkins Glen and COTA along with the technical abilities of Sonoma. Below you’ll find a track map illustrating the 14-turn track.

Weather for Kwik Trip 250

Early-July in Wisconsin can see weather all over the map. This weekend though in Elkhart Lake, the temps are forecast for the low-80s with very low chances of rain. That is a welcomed sight after the weather delays in Nashville last weekend. The temps won’t be overly hot for the drivers which is good with all the work they’ll be doing inside the car with shifting and turning.

Goodyear Tire Notes

The Goodyear tires this weekend will be a bit different setup than they had last year here. They will be running the same tire on all four corners, though two different codes to help the teams keep straight what tires go where. They will be mounting the same codes on left-rear and right-front and then the opposite corners get the other code. Teams ran the same code at COTA earlier this year.

NASCAR DFS Strategy For Road America

Road race DFS strategy is a bit different than our regular strategies we employ. We’re less concerned with laps led and fastest laps since there are fewer laps in these races than the more standard events. That being said, they can be differentiators in lineup trains. We’re more focused on drivers getting good finishing positions and who can move up through the field. However, that doesn’t mean we’re looking for entirely PD; we have to be smart about it. Last year at this track there were a ton of fast cars in practice that had trouble in, or in some cases didn’t run, qualifying. That led to several drivers starting in the back quarter of the pack and finishing in the top-quarter. Don’t expect the same thing this weekend. Passing chances here should be equivalent to COTA more than Sonoma where there was little passing. The stages are 15-15-32 laps in length and there will be different pit road rules in place this weekend, as there typically are here. The stage lengths and the pit strategy will have a major effect on the top-10 late in the race depending on how the cautions fall. For road courses though, unless someone is truly stuck, there aren’t typically cautions thrown. The best way to build lineups for these tracks is to try and envision race flow and who might sell out for stage points versus who’s fighting for the win at the end.

Facts To Know This Race

  • Passing happened pretty well here last year with none of the top-five starters finishing inside the top-seven spots by race’s end.
  • Ross Chastain and Ryan Blaney had 25 Quality Passes each at Sonoma, for the most in the field, while there were 10 drivers that had more than that at COTA in nearly half as many laps.
  • When looking at the last five road races, not including roval-style tracks, there are only three drivers in the field with Driver Ratings over 100 on average.
  • There are 8 drivers in the field with at least 3 top-10s in the last five races at road courses.
  • Over the last five road races, an average of 6.2 drivers per race that have moved up double-digit places in PD.
  • Lapping isn’t a concern at these tracks with nearly 31 drivers a race have finished on the lead lap.
  • Only once has a driver led more than 50 laps in a single race.

Last Five Road Races

The table below shows the number of drivers to reach each stat-type over the last five similar road races with Race 1 being the most recent.

Positive Place Differential202323161820
Six+ Place Differential Spots11166101010.6
Double-Digit Place Differential6112936.2
Double-Digit Fast Laps414112.2
20+ Laps Led312111.6
50+ Laps Led000010.2
100+ Laps Led000000
Lead Lap Finishers313224343330.8

For the tables below:

The DFS Scoring Table: Race 1 is the most recent race in the sample size with Race 5 being the earliest. We are using the Last 5 similar races this year for the data.

The Similar Races table: The data is comprised of stats from the last 10 races at road races including Roval-style tracks.

The This Week’s Race table: We’re using the last five races at Watkins Glen, Sonoma, COTA, and Road America.