DraftKings F1 Brazil Grand Prix DFS Picks: Is Mercedes a Lock After Locking Front Row?

Formula 1 is already out to an action packed weekend, kicking things off with a sprint race. Drivers went through one free practice session on Friday and then straight into qualifying. The racing world was shocked when Kevin Magnussen took the pole at the sprint race. The scenario got even more interesting, leading to some interesting DraftKings F1 DFS picks and strategy for tomorrow’s Brazil Grand Prix slate.

The weather was a little rough and Magnussen did not manage to keep up his pace during the sprint, but nevertheless he was able to beat everyone on the track. Fans were treated to a fast-paced sprint race the next day that saw George Russell take home the checkered flag, which means he will be starting on pole position for Sunday’s race. Carlos Sainz finished second in the sprint race, but he will be starting from 7th on the grid after taking a grid penalty for an engine upgrade.

The sprint race is an excellent spot to see where teams rank in essentially a mini race of 24 laps. The biggest mover in the sprint race was Magnussen who started in first but then finished in eighth. Lando Norris dropped from fourth to seventh, while Mick Schumacher went from 20th to 12th. Both Alfa Romeo cars moved up multiple positions. The two Alpine drivers fell back multiple spots after they touched during the sprint despite only causing minimal damage to both cars.

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Formula 1 DFS Picks: DraftKings F1 Picks

Constructor: Mercedes ($10,900)

Mercedes brought new wing upgrades to Brazil and it looks like it is paying off. Their driver duo raced extremely well on Saturday in the sprint and finished in first and third respectively. They were awarded a front-row lockout after Sainz was bounced from second place for the race on Sunday. They are the second most expensive unit, but seem poised to take home the checkered flag on Sunday for their first Grand Prix win of the season. They are a great place to start for cash games and GPPs.

Constructor: Red Bull ($12,900)

This will be a much more contrarian option this week because of their $2000 price bump, and because they are starting behind both Mercedes cars on Sunday. While Max Verstappen has been competitive in almost every race this season (if he wasn’t the heavy favorite and eventual winner), he is on record after the sprint from Saturday saying that Mercedes looks unbeatable. If there is one team that can beat Mercedes this season it is Red Bull. They are a decent play in GPPs, but cost too much for cash games with the two Mercedes cars in front.

Constructor: Ferrari ($10,300)

There is some merit and contrarian theory to playing Ferrari here on Sunday. They are only worth a shot in GPPs, but they really weren’t that far off the pace in Saturday’s sprint. Sainz actually finished second, but will be starting from seventh after his grid penalty while Charles Leclerc will be starting in fifth. If the Red Bull’s get too aggressive and each team loses one of their drivers, then Ferrari could very well make the optimal build.

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Driver: George Russell ($9,800 DraftKings)

Driver: Lewis Hamilton ($10,600 DraftKings)

Cash game builds will probably start with Russell in the captain spot, followed by Mercedes constructors and then Verstappen. This set up allows for some flexibility to lineup’s value pieces, although not much. Russell makes for a very strong cash and GPP play, but if he is someone you are looking to fade, then playing Hamilton should be your starting point. Hamilton will start alongside his teammate Russell. However, using Hamilton and Mercedes and Verstappen does not leave enough salary to build a complete roster. That means Hamilton will come in at lower ownership. He should definitely be on your radar in GPPs, with Russell and him being the top two captain options for builds.

Max Verstappen ($13,800 DraftKings)

Since Russell is on pole, he will most likely be the value play to start off rosters with. If DFS players put Russell in their captain spot it will still leave enough money to fit Verstappen in. While the Mercedes car looks fierce this weekend, Verstappen is still the favorite to win the Grand Prix. Verstappen’s price has gotten to a point where fading him is going to make or break builds.

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Alex Albon ($4,400 DraftKings)

These are the spots to get excited about loading up on Alex Albon. He was very close to making Q3 on Friday but was forced to retire his car after just twelve laps during the sprint on Saturday. Albon will be starting in last place meaning he will be guaranteed to not lose any points. At this track and with his performance on Friday, Albon is expected to gain positions and beat his teammate Nicholas Latifi on Sunday.

Sebastian Vettel ($5,600 DraftKings)

If DFS players want to go with a more balanced build, Vettel seems like a solid spot to start. He managed to finish ninth in the sprint after starting in 13th and even having a little run in with team mate Lance Stroll. He is starting in the top half of the grid compared to Stroll who is back in 16th.

Guanyu Zhou ($3,200 DraftKings)

Guanyu Zhou is starting in front of his team mate and could even sneak inside the top 10 on Sunday. He has finished inside of the points just once in his last 10 races, but Zhou’s car showed potential during the sprint moving up from 17th to 12th.

Mick Schumacher ($3,400 DraftKings)

Schumacher is not the best cash game play, but is in an interesting position for GPPs. He is starting four positions behind Magnussen who has been the talk of the town this week after taking pole position for the sprint race. Schumacher grades out as one of the best value plays under $4,000 this weekend in Stokastic’s model.

Cash game lineups almost make themselves at this point with only so many driver options and wanting to fit in two of the top six drivers with one of the top three constructors. Starting with  Russell – Verstappen -Mercedes, it allows some decent roster flexibility while still having a high floor and upside.

GPPs are another beast. Fading Verstappen is never easy but with his current position and watching the Mercedes cars show out on Saturday, Verstappen is not the lock we have been used to seeing. There is even a way of fitting in Russell as your captain with Mercedes, Perez and Sainz.

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

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