DraftKings F1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix DFS Picks: Red Bull Locks Out Front Row

Formula 1 is under the lights in Abu Dhabi for the final Grand Prix of the year. The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is a special race with an incredible atmosphere under the lights on Yas Island. Let’s analyze the race and best F1 DFS picks on DraftKings

Last week in Brazil, we saw Mercedes put it all together and finish 1-2 to take home their first Grand Prix of the season. It has not been an ideal year for Mercedes and while they were able to bring home the victory last weekend, this week it seems like a different story. Red Bull locked out the front row after two very impressive laps in Q3 of Qualifying, with the Ferraris locking out the second row. That leaves Mercedes in fifth and sixth.

It will be interesting to see which drivers show out in what could be their final drive on the grid. Drivers like Daniel Ricciardo and Mick Schumacher are currently without a seat in 2022 and will no doubt look to end this year on a high note.

This will be the retirement race for long-time pro Sebastian Vettel. He has had some incredible years on the grid and has decided that he will be moving away from the sport after the 2022 season.

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Formula 1 DFS Picks: DraftKings F1 Picks

Constructor: Red Bull ($12,500 DraftKings)

In cash games and GPPs, using Max Verstappen at captain and Red Bull constructor is going to be expensive. Cash games may require DFS players to use Ferrari as their constructor because of the major price difference. A Red Bull-Verstappen stack is no doubt in play for GPPs because of the combined upside they have here in Abu Dhabi. Because Sergio Perez is tied in points with Charles Leclerc, all Perez would need to do is beat Leclerc. A late final lap position swap seems out of the question, especially after what happened in Brazil. That said, playing Perez and Red Bull seems like a less than ideal situation considering Verstappen would still need to finish on the podium for this stack to pay off of his price.

Constructor: Ferrari ($10,300 DraftKings)

Ferrari has seen their struggles mount all season and are hoping they can end the 2022 season on a high note. The team has struggled in every aspect, from driving into walls with no cars around, to pit bosses making the wrong decision on tires. Ferrari has shown the pace here in Abu Dhabi and are the cheapest of the top three constructors this week. Ferrari will no doubt be pushing Leclerc this week because of him being tied with Perez in points this year. Using Ferrari allows for a lot more roster flexibility when building. They make for a strong play in cash games, but also viable in GPPs because they have shown the upside this year.

Constructor: Mercedes ($11,100 DraftKings)

Mercedes is coming into Abu Dhabi on a high, but Saturday showed that it might have just been a good one week. The team admitted that their car struggled with porpoising in qualifying and led to a fifth-sixth finish. Mercedes is more of a GPP play this weekend after seeing their price increase and locking out the third row of the grid. Both Mercedes drivers and their constructor are in difficult spots this week since their price jumps won’t allow either driver to be stacked with Verstappen at captain, even if players are using Ferrari.

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Driver: Max Verstappen ($13,800 DraftKings; First)

Verstappen will be going for his 15th win of the 2022 season. His price stayed the same after his 6th place finish in Brazil, but the bigger story coming into the weekend was the refusal of Verstappen to swap positions to give Perez more points for the drivers championship. Verstappen seems locked and loaded to go out and extend his current F1 record of most Grand Prix’s won in a season. It will be hard to fade Verstappen in cash this weekend, even at his price.

Driver: Carlos Sainz ($8,800 DraftKings; Fourth)

The Mercedes drivers saw their price take a jump after their 1-2 finish in Brazil, which left Carlos Sainz in the sweet spot of pricing. He is the cheapest of the top six drivers and is the only driver that DFS players can stack with Verstappen at captain and Ferrari as the constructor. Technically, Perez is also an option if DFS players are using Ferrari as their constructor. Using Sainz gives some wiggle room with the last couple driver spots, while using Perez does not leave any aside from picking between Schumacher and Yuki Tsunoda. It is hard to recommend using either Ferrari driver as a captain, but anything can happen in GPPs.

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Driver: Valtteri Bottas ($5,600 DraftKings; 18th)

Valterri Bottas didn’t have the dream season some may have expected for him this year after leaving Mercedes and finding a seat at Alfa Romeo. He started the year off with blazing speed and scored points in seven of the first nine races. Since then, Bottas has only finished inside the top 10 twice, his last two races. Bottas rates as a great mid-range value play this weekend in Stokastic’s model. He makes a lot of sense if DFS players are looking at a Verstappen-Red Bull stack on Sunday.

Driver: Alex Albon ($4,000 DraftKings; 19th)

Alex Albon saw his price decrease one last time for the final race of the season. His price makes it hard to get to, especially if DFS players are using two of the top six drivers and one of the top three constructors. Albon is really only possible to use if Verstappen isn’t being used as a captain. He has solid upside considering his odds to beat his teammate and ability to over-take other drivers on the grid. He has moved up positions in four of his last five races and has beat his teammate Nicholas Latifi in 11 of their last 12 races. He is a great piece to get to in cash games if possible because of his high floor compared to others in this price range.

Driver: Yuki Tsunoda ($3,400 DraftKings; 11th)

Don’t look now but Tsunoda may be sending his teammate Pierre Gasly off in an emphatic style. Tsunoda is sticking with AlphaTauri in 2023, but Gasly is moving to Alpine. Yuki has not had a great season, but he is priced $1,600 cheaper and will start six positions ahead of his teammate on Sunday. Tsunoda is always tough to trust, but he ranks as one of the better values this weekend in Stokastic’s model.

Driver: Mick Schumacher ($3,600 DraftKings; 12th)

Schumacher is looking to finish the season on a high note after being let go by HAAS as a driver. He did well in Brazil and out-qualified his teammate Kevin Magnussen Saturday in Abu Dhabi. Schumacher has not finished in the points in 10 straight races, but he will start four spots ahead of his teammate which is a much needed five bonus points in DraftKings scoring.

Final F1 DFS Picks & Summary: F1 Picks

Cash game lineups will be more difficult this week since Verstappen is starting on the pole. Using him and Red Bull as the constructor does not leave any room to get another top six driver in lineups. Another way of going in cash games will be to use Verstappen-Sainz and Ferrari which will leave $10,500 for the final three driver spots.

GPPs are another beast. Fading Verstappen is no doubt in play, but will be very scary. Many expect a tight battle between Perez and Leclerc for the second position in the drivers championship, while Sainz is just 6 points behind Hamilton for fifth in the standings. This race is not one to miss under the lights in Abu Dhabi.

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Phillip Beneteau
Teacher, writer and avid sports fan with a passion and love for F1 racing.

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