If you didn’t know any better, you’d think it would be tough to organize any sort of fantasy league for a solo sport like NASCAR. The surprising thing is that NASCAR fantasy actually is a thing. In fact, it has been a thing since before online fantasy even came around. It’s just so much more prevalent today thanks to the internet.
It also doesn’t hurt any that NASCAR, ESPN and FOX Sports already dabble in fantasy auto racing. NASCAR itself even hosts its own fantasy racing leagues online. Having the big players endorse fantasy racing lends the activity a great deal of credibility and exposure.
The Best Real Money NASCAR Fantasy Leagues are at:
The best fantasy NASCAR site today is DraftKings.com. They host frequent daily contests with prize pools and buyins at all levels. Other sites have tried to expand into daily NASCAR, but DraftKings is so far the only site to actually get it right and host frequent contests with worthwhile prize pools.
Where to Play for Real Money
Yahoo and NASCAR.com both host free-to-play season long leagues if you’re into that kind of thing. If you want to play for real money, you’ll need to visit an actual fantasy site such as DraftKings. These sites host leagues in which you pay to play and have the opportunity to win real money from your opponents.
Out of all the major professional sports, NASCAR is one of the toughest to find fantasy leagues for. This is especially true online. The only major DFS site offering fantasy NASCAR contests is DraftKings.com – and that’s a good thing. DraftKings has a huge player base and some of the biggest contests in all of fantasy.
Daily Fantasy Sites:
Season Long Sites:
Out of all the fantasy NASCAR sites out there, the best bet is DraftKings.com. This is the only DFS site right now that hosts regular NASCAR daily leagues. FantasyAces.com has a notice on its website that it will expand into auto racing soon but as of the time of this writing, that’s still just a plan for the future. DraftKings is where it’s at right now.
About Those Season Long Sites
The FOX, NASCAR and Yahoo websites mentioned above operate in a more traditional manner. These leagues cost nothing to enter but sometimes award prizes to the top performers. Out of the three sites listed above, my personal favorite is the one hosted by NASCAR.
NASCAR.com fantasy leagues are hosted as salary cap games and allow you to organize a new 5-driver team every week. This is almost the same exact concept as daily fantasy except your points follow you week to week so that the entire season ends up being one big contest.
You get $100 worth of virtual salary to spend on drivers each week. Each driver’s cost is determined based on his overall abilities. The most challenging aspect of drafting your drivers is figuring out how to allocate your limited spending power on 5 drivers. Some of the best drivers can cost upwards of $30, which means there’s a balancing act involved in drafting a well-rounded team.
You can create or join leagues at NASCAR.com with up to 25 other people. Leagues with 25 people have a chance to earn a weekly prize awarded by NASCAR as well as a season-long grand prize for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place finishers in the league.
The Difference between Seasonal and Daily Leagues
Seasonal NASCAR leagues are the “traditional” way of doing the whole fantasy thing. These types of leagues have been around forever, even if in the past fantasy auto racing was limited mostly to diehard fans of the sport.
Seasonal leagues have you draft a “team” of drivers at the beginning of the racing year. Some leagues have you choose new drivers throughout the season but the running total of your points earned stays with you the entire season. Points are earned when your drivers perform well in race standings and lead laps.
Over the course of the entire season, you accumulate points as the manager of your team. The contest ends with the last race of the year and each team’s points are tallied up. Those with the most points are declared the winners and win some kind of prize.
Daily racing leagues typically last for just a few races from beginning to end. You choose a team of drivers using a virtual salary. Each driver comes with an associated cost that is calculated based on his perceived abilities. Drivers viewed as big favorites to win cost the most while longshot drivers cost the least. Your job is to draft the most capable team given your salary limitations.
The biggest difference between the two is that daily leagues come to a conclusion after just a few races. You do not keep a running point total all year long. You are paid immediately and can then start a whole new league the very next week. This way, you’re not locked in all year long. You can adjust your strategy and participate in new contests all season long.