The High Line – Camping World Truck Series – NextEra Energy 250 – Daytona International Speedway – February 18, 2022

Overview

The NextEra 250 is a 100-lap race on Daytona’s 2.5-mile tri-oval that is heavily banked. The asphalt track banks 31 degrees in the turns and 18 degrees in the tri-oval and if you’ve ever had the pleasure of walking on the track you’d know that it is quite a climb up from the infield to the wall surrounding the track. With qualifying taking place earlier this afternoon, the drivers have a pretty good feel for track conditions and such as we head into this 250-mile run.

Strategy

The general strategy for these superspeedways is to find drivers that are starting toward the back in hope that they avoid the inevitable big wreck or wrecks. That strategy is no different in the truck series where the driving is, let’s just say chaotic. With just 100 laps the emphasis on dominator points is non-existent. Let’s find some drivers with talent in good equipment that may have underwhelmed for whatever reason in qualifying.

Most comparable tracks: Talladega Superspeedway (only real difference is how much wider it is than Daytona)

*Note: all pricing is DraftKings focused

Top Drivers

Johnny Sauter ($8,500), Starting 36th

Despite having a good history at Daytona and good practice numbers, Sauter will start way back at 36th and thus be heavy chalk heading into this race. In 13 truck series races at Daytona, Sauter has three wins and six top 10’s with an average finish of 14.7. He’ll be in contention for a top 10 spot when all is said in done provided that he can stay out of trouble.

Zane Smith ($10,200)

Another driver that has good practice laps, 12 of them to be exact, and a sub-par qualifying effort was Zane Smith. Smith, one of the more promising young drivers in the series, has two starts at Daytona in a truck with an average finish of 13.5. Smith is with a new team this year taking over the number 38 truck which was driven by Todd Gilliland over the last few years. With his talent in a good truck I expect him to be a contender to challenge for a win tonight.

Ben Rhodes ($9,700), Starting 27th

Ben Rhodes wins Truck race at Darlington - NASCAR Talk | NBC Sports

The defending Truck series champion is back at Daytona where he has six top 10’s and a win in his career in a truck. Rhodes has a middle-of-the-pack effort in practice and a lackluster performance in qualifying and thus he’ll find himself starting way back in 27th. Make no mistake about it, Rhodes is in a good truck and clearly has the talent here as the defending series champion. He’s also extremely affordable as the sixth-highest-priced driver in the pool.

Matt Crafton ($9,500), Starting 29th

In Crafton’s last nine races at Daytona, he has finished worse than 14th once (19th) and has finished in the top 15 eight times, top 10 four times, and has a top-five finish. Crafton rolls off 29th and as a veteran in this series will be able to find his way to the front and hopefully avoid trouble.

Matt DiBenedetto ($10,300), Starting 23rd

If nothing else, Matty D has experience behind the wheel in an environment where there are plenty of drivers who are inexperienced and prone to mistakes. DiBenedetto takes on the number 25 Rackley trucks after spending the last seven seasons running full time in the Cup Series. At that level DiBenedetto finished in the top ten three times at Daytona and there’s plenty of place differential available to him tonight starting 23rd.

Also Consider:

Derek Kraus ($7,600), Starting 30th

Jason White ($4,700), Starting 33rd

Timmy Hill ($5,100), Starting 35th

GOOD LUCK!!

Rob Geriak