The High Line – XFINITY Series – Pit 250 – Circuit of the Americas – March 26, 2022

Overview

Circuit of The Americas turn-by-turn analysis | NASCAR

We’ve seen just about everything thus far in the XFINITY Series season from superspeedways to a West Coast swing with Auto Club and two flat tracks, to a reconfigured Atlanta which was a chaotic carbon copy of Daytona or Talladega. However, we haven’t seen a road course to this point but NASCAR is saying “hold my beer”, let’s run COTA. The Circuit of the Americas or COTA is a 3.426-mile Formula 1 road course that features 20 turns. The drivers will turn just 48 laps translating to 156.86 miles making dominator points not as imperative as some other races, if important at all. The XFINITY Series made its COTA debut last season with Kyle Busch winning in dominant fashion leading 35 of the 46 laps. Like that race last year with Busch, Austin Dillon, Kevin Harvick, Tyler Reddick, and Cole Custer, this race will feature some Cup Series regulars as well with A.J. Allmendinger, Ross Chastain, Custer, and Bubba Wallace as well as some road-course specialists like Preston Pardus, Miguel Paludo, Parker Kligerman, and Jade Buford. The competition in these road course races has only increased over the past few years and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.

Strategy

As will be the theme this weekend, because this is a road course and there will be limited laps, in this care there are only 48, dominator points are pretty are going to be few and far between and we’ll need to capitalize on place differential points and finishing position which is where finding the drivers that excel at road courses and are in solid enough equipment comes into play. Last years race was dominated by Busch from the jump leading 35 of the 46 laps and saw just four cautions and only seven cars not finish on the lead lap (four of those cars had engine/equipment issues). It was an uneventful race with limited mishaps and only a couple of drastic place differential studs making a difference, otherwise, this race was all about, other than Busch’s dominance, the few differential points available and finding the right drivers to finish in the best spots as possible.

Most comparable tracks: Watkins Glen International, Sonoma Raceway, Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course

*Note: all pricing is DraftKings focused

Top Drivers

Pit Boss Grills Sponsoring AJ Allmendinger in Xfinity Race at COTA -  Jayski's NASCAR Silly Season Site

A.J. Allmendinger ($10,500), Starting 4th

One of the best road course racers in the series, Allmendinger will start fourth on Saturday. In 18 XFINITY road course races, Dinger has six wins and 15 top fives overall including a second-place finish last year at COTA. Starting fourth gives him a few place differential points if he were to win but also doesn’t prohibit him from leading some laps in the process. Allmendinger will contend for the win all day barring some misfortunes along the way.

Brandon Jones ($9,100), Starting 38th

After having car trouble in practice and heading to the garage, Jones was never able to qualify this he’ll start at the rear. Joe Gibbs Racing is obviously well equipped to manage this issue thus expecting Jones to have a very competitive car for this race. Jones will be heavily owned because of his place differential available of course despite not being a great road course racer overall. However, Jones does have four top fives and nine top 10’s in 26 career road course races.

Ty Gibbs ($10,400), Starting on the Pole

It goes without saying that Gibbs is incredibly talented and in the best car in the race so I’ll keep this brief. If you’re of the belief that a particular driver can lead nearly every lap of this race and win much as Kyle Busch did in this car last year then Gibbs is your guy. Otherwise, Gibbs is a driver worth fading as there are other road course-worthy drivers here and the risk that comes with Gibbs underwhelming is prevalent.

Jeremy Clements ($6,800), Starting 26th

Clements starts off 26th and in 40 career XFINITY Road course races has an average finish of 19th. Within those 40 races, Clements has a win and six top-fives. There’s a lot of value here for Clements and his small family-owned team priced at $6,800.

Daniel Hemric ($9,700), Starting 19th

The defending XFINITY Champion starts 19th but has had some road course success. Hemric has run 17 road courses at the XFINITY level and has eight top 10’s and seven top fives

Also Consider:

Riley Herbst ($8,100), Starting 22nd

Ryan Sieg ($6,200), Starting 35th

J.J. Yeley ($5,800), Starting 36th

Sage Karam ($5,600), Starting 24th

GOOD LUCK!!

Rob Geriak