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2017 Monster Energy All-Star Race Preview

Posted by on May 20, 2017 in Nascar Betting Blog | 0 comments

2017 Monster Energy All-Star Race Preview

2017 Monster Energy All-Star Preview
NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series Betting Preview
Saturday May 20th, 8:16PM (EST) at Charlotte Motor Speedway
by Jay Horne of NASCARWagers.com, NASCAR Handicapping Service

Tonight NASCAR returns home for the 33rd edition of the Monster Energy All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. This event has changed frequently throughout the years surrounding the number of laps, drivers, and overall format of the race. Even tonight’s race will feature a brand new format that includes the option for different tires in the final segment in hopes to create an exciting finish. Despite all the changes throughout the years, the prestige of being crowned winner of the All-Star Race is unparalleled to any other race in NASCAR. As we prepare for one of the greatest nights in racing, I want to take this time to provide our 2017 Monster Energy All-Star preview!

The reason this is a “preview” and not a race predictions title is simply because I am foregoing any official betting picks tonight. I mentioned above how often this race changes and it is usually done by NASCAR in hopes to create exciting racing. As a fan, I absolutely love this race. I love seeing NASCAR’s best go at it in a Saturday night dirt track type of format. I love the location at Charlotte Motor Speedway, the home of NASCAR. I love the history of this race with winners like Darrell Waltrip, Dale Earnhardt, Bill Elliott, Davy Allison, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, and others. I also love the fact that winning this race, unlike other All-Star events in major professional sports, can be a benchmark to a driver’s career resume.

With that being said and for everything I love about this race, I absolutely hate this race from a betting standpoint. I am sorry if that burst anyone’s hopes for placing some big bets on tonight’s event. However because this is a non-points race where drivers have sort of a checkers or wreckers mentality, because of the ever changing format that adds unpredictability to the race, and because of several other factors that I will refrain from rambling about.. this race does not bode well for bettors. Even with a handicapping edge, this race is so unpredictable in so many ways that it is nearly impossible to have a true betting advantage. Another reason I hate this race from a betting standpoint is because the field is cut in half which always has an effect on producing unfavorable odds. For those reasons, it is extremely difficult to bet this race with confidence and yield a valuable return for the risk.

Therefore I will be watching this race tonight as a fan and will wait for the Coca Cola 600 next week before adding any official race picks. However, I still want to provide my thoughts going into tonight’s race for anyone wanting to lay some action. If you have not taken the time to review the format for tonight’s event, I highly suggest doing so because it is surely setting up to be a wild final segment. To recap, only 10 drivers will race in the final segment and teams will also have the option to run “softer” tires which have more take off speed for the final 10 lap dash. If teams choose to select the “softer” tire compound, they will start in the back of the final segment. Needless to say you will have drivers gambling for track position, some electing tires, and then a recipe for all hell to break loose over those final 10 laps.

Because the first 3 segments are just 20 laps each, I feel like you need to stagger your lineups with drivers that excel on restarts and short runs. I know short run vs. long run drivers can change from week to week depending on the car, setup, track, etc. However, I believe this format favors guys like Kyle Larson and Kyle Busch. Larson has been one of the fastest guys all season and he also won the pole for tonight’s All-Star Race. I think his speed, take off ability, and absolute talent is ideal for an All-Star type race. For Kyle Busch, I know JGR is in a mini slump right now but Rowdy has been running well recently including a 5th place finish at Kansas last week. If there is any driver that I could choose for restarts and a short run finish in all of NASCAR, Busch would be that guy. Busch also looked extremely strong in practices yesterday and backed up that speed by qualifying 2nd. Therefore, I am really starting to like the chances for the #18 team.

If you look throughout the rest of the field that is locked into tonight’s event, I think you have to get serious consideration to Martin Truex Jr and Jimmie Johnson. I mean Johnson’s resume at Charlotte needs no explanation and he is a 4-time winner of the All-Star Race. Truex has been the clear best on the 1.5 mile tracks over the last year going back to his dominate performance at Charlotte in the Coca Cola 600. If I had to choose a driver simply on speed, the #78 would be at the top of the list. However in my opinion, Truex is not the aggressive or short run driver that I want on my lineup to win the All-Star Race.

Obviously arguments could be made for guys like Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski, and Joey Logano entering tonight’s race. Logano won this race last year but did struggle with speed in practice/qualifying on Friday. I thought Harvick had the best speed outside of Busch and Larson. Harvick is also a former All-Star Race winner and has been running exceptionally well. I don’t think Harvick has got enough credit for his recent finishes which include 4 straight top 5’s if you exclude the restrictor plate race at Talladega. The #4 team is starting to show the speed that we have seen over the last 4 years and I think they are really close to getting another victory.

So while I feel like Larson, Busch, and Harvick are the drivers to beat tonight. I still feel like this race holds the potential for a surprise winner. Let’s also not forget that we have some pretty good drivers that will be trying to race their way into the All-Star Race tonight from the Monster Energy Open. Clint Bowyer, Ryan Blaney, Erik Jones, and Chase Elliott are just a few names that will try to earn 3 additional spots into the All-Star Race this evening. All four of those drivers were fast in the Open practice and have shown the ability to run upfront this year. Elliott and Blaney have been really strong on the 1.5 mile tracks. Therefore if any of those guys get into the show, I would expect them to race forward and potentially be in the 10 car hunt for the final segment.

If you are looking to bet on tonight’s race and take advantage of numerous side props, check out Bovada

2017 NC Education Lottery 200 Race Picks

Posted by on May 19, 2017 in NASCAR Betting, Nascar Betting Blog, NASCAR Sportsbooks | 0 comments

2017 NC Education Lottery 200 Race Picks

2017 NC Education Lottery 200 Race Picks
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Betting Preview
Friday May 19th, 8:30PM (EST) at Charlotte Motor Speedway
by Jay Horne of NASCARWagers.com, NASCAR Handicapping Service

The Camping World Truck Series will kick off an All-Star weekend later tonight with the running of the NC Education Lottery 200 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. While the bulk of the anticipation awaits tomorrow night’s Monster Energy All-Star Race, I believe we could see an equally exciting race later this evening in the Camping World Truck Series. Therefore take a ride with us as we prepare for racing at the home of NASCAR and provide our 2017 NC Education Lottery 200 race picks!

Last week Kyle Busch earned his 47th career win in the Truck Series with a victory at Kansas Speedway. It was Busch’s 17th victory in his last 31 starts in the Truck Series which is simply phenomenal. Once again Rowdy will be the overwhelming favorite to win tonight’s NC Education Lottery 200 at Charlotte where he owns a track record 6 victories in the Truck Series. While most signs point to another victory for Busch, let’s not forget that Busch was seemingly handed the win last week at Kansas when Ben Rhodes suffered mechanical failure leading the race with just 10 laps to go.

I am not trying to take anything away from Busch’s win last week but simply pointing out the fact that he did not have the best truck. I believe that possibility exist again tonight mainly because of the testing that was held at Charlotte a few weeks back. At that test, teams surrounding Ben Rhodes and Ryan Truex found a lot of speed which they were able to show in last week’s race at Kansas. Truex finished 6th last week in his best finish of the year and Rhodes was in position for the win before the heartbreaking engine failure with 10 to go. As a result of their gains in testing and speeds yesterday in practice, I expect both Truex and Rhodes to race well again this evening.

With that being said, Matt Crafton and Christopher Bell remain the two biggest threats to dethrone Busch from the top spot tonight. Crafton is the defending winner of the NC Education Lottery 200 which was actually his 2nd Truck Series victory at Charlotte. Meanwhile, Bell has been the most consistent frontrunner in the Truck Series throughout the season. In practice, both trucks showed solid speed finishing in the top 7 in both sessions. If I had to pick between the two drivers, I would give the edge to Bell because all of the Kyle Busch Motorsports trucks (Gragson, Busch, and Bell) were really strong in terms of speed.

One other driver that I would like to throw into the conversation is rookie Chase Briscoe. Briscoe has not received a lot of publicity and is flying under the radar in my personal opinion. I believe the reason is because he posted a few mundane finishes of 25th at Atlanta and 11th at Martinsville. However, Briscoe posted his 2nd top 5 finish with his 5th place showing at Kansas last week. I would also quickly point out that he was running pretty well at Atlanta before a pit road mistake caused a flat tire which they were never able to recover from. However, Briscoe was another one of those teams that participated in the test at Charlotte and appeared to gain some speed. I was really high on this rookie entering the season and I still think he is capable of winning before this year is out. Therefore, I would add Briscoe to the name of guys that I expect to run well tonight if they can stay out of trouble.

Several of the drivers mentioned above received fairly generous odds at the beginning of the week especially in matchup situations. If you do not have a sportsbook that offers early odds, then I highly suggest signing up with 5 Dimes. The majority of our plays below lost more than half of their value. One of the most important aspects towards betting NASCAR racing is getting the best number (odds) to ensure the best value and ROI on your lineups. Therefore, be sure to follow our forums for early plays and have a sportsbook that allows you to jump on early betting lines before major line changes closer to race time!

2017 NC Education Lottery 200 Race Picks

*More plays to come closer to race time

Christopher Bell +650 (1.5 units)
Ben Rhodes +1600 (1 unit)
Ryan Truex +2750 (.5 unit)

H2H Matchups and Props

Ryan Truex -120 over Noah Gragson (4 units)
Ben Rhodes -110 over John Hunter Nemechek (3 units)
Chase Briscoe -115 over Austin Cindric (2 units)

2017 Go Bowling 400 Race Picks

Posted by on May 13, 2017 in NASCAR Betting, Nascar Betting Blog, NASCAR Handicapping | 0 comments

2017 Go Bowling 400 Race Picks

2017 Go Bowling 400 Race Picks
NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series Betting Preview
Saturday May 13th, 7:47PM (EST) at Kansas Speedway
by Jay Horne of NASCARWagers.com, NASCAR Handicapping Service

For the first time this season, the Monster Energy Cup Series will go night racing when the green flag is waved in the Go Bowling 400 at Kansas Speedway. Judging by Friday’s practices, things could get wild under the lights this evening as teams continue to battle extremely loose race conditions. We seen a few single car accidents on Friday as a result of those conditions. Even points leader Kyle Larson, possibly the best wheelman in NASCAR, could not avoid trouble as he lost control of his #42 machine in turn 2 in final practice and had to go to a backup car. We expect race conditions will continue to be on edge tonight when 40 cars take the green flag. As we anticipate a wild Saturday night, we take this time to preview tonight’s race and provide our 2017 Go Bowling 400 race picks!

If you are wondering why track conditions caused so much chaos and ill handling racecars throughout practices, then you are not the only one. To some extent, loose conditions were expected as the Monster Energy Cup Series come to Kansas under this new lower downforce package. We have seen this package in action throughout the season and at several other 1.5 mile tracks like Atlanta, Las Vegas, and Texas. However, Kansas has less banking than all of the other 1.5 mile tracks that the Cup Series has visited this season but is just as fast as those other tracks at the same time. If you combine that fact along with other factors such as a relatively hard GoodYear racing tire and at Kansas Speedway surface that has not aged much since it’s 2012 repave, then I think it becomes clear why we are seeing drivers struggle with the handling of their cars.

The good news is that these loose conditions are not that uncommon from what we have seen throughout the majority of the season. I am still concerned we may have a few extra accidents tonight but we cannot deviate our betting strategy because we have had similar conditions going into several races this season especially at the 1.5 mile tracks. In comparison to 1.5 mile tracks, I usually liken Kansas most closely with Kentucky Speedway because the banking at the two tracks are nearly identical. Both tracks have also been repaved in recent years which draws some comparisons as well. While this race will be the first at Kansas under this new downforce package, this package debuted at Kentucky last season in a race that was won by Brad Keselowski.

Keselowski has been one of the best drivers in under this new rules package. Keselowski has added 2 victories this year to that Kentucky win and one of those victories come on another 1.5 mile surface at Atlanta earlier this year. I think Kyle Larson and Jimmie Johnson are the only guys that can even compare to the success that Keselowski has had under this package. The #2 was decent in practices on Friday but let’s not forget that the practices were in the middle of the day which will be much different than the conditions we will see under the lights this evening. I have not seen much talk about the #2 car going into tonight’s event but I don’t understand why. I think he is the guy to watch tonight when the sun fades into the lights of Kansas Speedway.

If we look at this new package from an overall standpoint, then I think you have to pay attention to tracks like Atlanta, Texas, Auto Club, and Las Vegas that give us some type of indicators as to expectations for tonight’s race. If you look at those races, then you cannot look past guys like Kyle Larson, Jimmie Johnson, Martin Truex Jr, Joey Logano, Chase Elliott, Brad Keselowski, and Kevin Harvick. If you are looking for a track to narrow down your research, I would put my focus towards Texas. The GoodYear tire that is being used this week is new for Kansas Speedway but it closely resembles what teams used at Texas. If you like at the way practices unfolded, it seemed as it followed a linear trend to the guys that ran well at Texas. Don’t believe me? Well race winner Jimmie Johnson posted the best 10 lap average in final practice. Kevin Harvick finished 2nd in 10 lap averages in final practice and he finished 4th back at Texas. Kyle Larson was 4th on 10 lap averages and finished runner-up back at Texas.

I believe we are seeing speeds resemble Texas because of the tire compound and its effect on handling of these cars. If I could make another comparison to prove my point, remember Ryan Blaney had his strongest run of his career back at Texas leading a race high 148 laps before a late race pit road mistake pushed the youngster back to a 12th place finish. On Friday, the #21 car earned his first pole for tonight’s Go Bowling 400 and has emerged as one of the top threats for tonight’s race. Therefore, I think the drivers that performed well at Texas are the perfect baseline for handicapping tonight’s event.

If you are looking for drivers to consider for match-up or fantasy situations, then let me steer you away from the Joe Gibbs Racing cars. It should not be a secret by now that JGR cars have struggled heavily this season especially at the 1.5 mile tracks. At the 3 prior 1.5 mile tracks of Atlanta, Las Vegas, and Texas, Daniel Suarez has a best finish of 19th and Kyle Busch has a best finish of 15th. Denny Hamlin did score a 6th place showing at Las Vegas but his other two finishes were 38th at Atlanta along with a 25th place finish at Texas. Surprisingly, Matt Kenseth has been the best of the group with finishes of 3rd, 9th, and 16th. However, it is easy to see that the entire group is missing some speed and perhaps those guys are worthy of fade consideration until they can turn things around.

2017 Go Bowling 400 Race Picks

*More plays to come closer to race time

Jimmie Johnson +850 (1.25 units): 3-time Kansas winner, Texas winner, best 10 lap average in final practice
Brad Keselowski +900 (1 unit): 2011 winner, has been great under this package, starting 17th

Two Team Parlay

Kevin Harvick/Martin Truex Jr +339 wins Go Bowling 400
Dale Earnhardt Jr +140 over Denny Hamlin
Risking 1.25 units to win: +1192

H2H Matchups and Props

Brad Keselowski -130 over Chase Elliott (2 units)
Dale Earnhardt Jr -140 over Kasey Kahne (2 units)
Trevor Bayne -115 over Daniel Suarez (2 units)
Jamie McMurray +900 finishes Top 3 (.5 unit)

Total Cautions over 7.5 -135 (2 units) courtesy of Bovada

2017 Toyota Tundra 250 Race Picks

Posted by on May 12, 2017 in NASCAR Betting, Nascar Betting Blog, NASCAR Handicapping | 0 comments

2017 Toyota Tundra 250 Race Picks

2017 Toyota Tundra 250 Race Picks
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Betting Preview
Friday May 12th, 8:30PM (EST) at Kansas Speedway
by Jay Horne of NASCARWagers.com, NASCAR Handicapping Service

For the first time in 6 weeks, the Camping World Truck Series returns to action with the running of the Toyota Tundra 250 at Kansas Speedway. After a long break, the Truck Series will accompany the Monster Energy Cup Series at Kansas Speedway for our first night races of the season. Back at Martinsville in early April, Cup Series driver Chase Elliott earned his 2nd Truck Series victory over Johnny Sauter and Christopher Bell. Tonight another Cup Series veteran in Kyle Busch is the overwhelming favorite to visit victory lane. Find out our thoughts as we break down tonight’s race and provide our 2017 Toyota Tundra 250 race picks!

I believe it is safe to say by now that everyone understands that Kyle Busch has been phenomenal in NASCAR’s lower series. Rowdy has 87 wins in the Xfinity Series and 46 victories in the Camping World Truck Series. Busch has scored 16 wins in his last 30 starts in the Truck Series including a 2014 victory at Kansas. If Busch is not strong enough by pure talent along, his Kyle Busch Motorsports Trucks have been the class of the Truck Series for several years now. Therefore, it is easy to see why Busch is the overwhelming favorite to win tonight’s Toyota Tundra 250.

From an odds standpoint, it is going to be hard to back Busch from a betting standpoint at less than even money. You can place a large wager on Busch with several betting units but that strategy typically limits you from taking additional drivers. Not to mention it lowers your overall ROI. The strategy I like taking is adding Busch to the start of a parlay and combining that with a potential play for tomorrow’s Go Bowling 400. Therefore you can keep your overall units down for tonight’s race, you can take additional drivers, and add more ROI to both races between the Xfinity and Cup Series. If you do not have a bookie that allows open parlays, then I highly suggest signing up with 5Dimes!

Another reason I like the parlay strategy is because you may not lose a ton of money off misfortune. If you look back at the Atlanta race, Busch was also a heavy favorite in that race but cut a tire on a late race restart after losing the lead in the pits. Luckily in that race we had just a 1 unit open parlay on Busch to win the race. Because we used that strategy, we were also able to take other drivers like Christopher Bell (+800) who ended up winning the race. The good news about having heavy favorites in these lower series races is that you can usually get pretty decent odds on the rest of the field. Therefore, it is always worth exploring additional drivers and the value they bring to your lineup.

I know many will remember Busch’s cut tire at Atlanta as the turning point in the race. However, Bell actually had the best truck for the majority of the race and consistently outrun Busch through the opening two stages to lead a race high 99 laps. Matt Crafton also run very well in that race and was able to hang with the KBM Trucks. Keep in mind, Crafton has finished no worse than 2nd in the last 4 races here at Kansas (2 wins) as this is one of his best tracks. Therefore, I doubt we are going to see any driver run away with tonight’s race especially with this relatively new stage racing format.

From yesterday’s practice sessions, both Christopher Bell and Matt Crafton stood out amongst the competition which compares to what we saw back at Atlanta. I thought Bell was the best of all trucks which is good indicator considering we jumped on Bell -130 over Timothy Peters early in the week if you follow our forums. Behind Bell and Crafton, I believe Johnny Sauter has some dark horse potential. For some reason, Sauter is never a driver that gets a lot of attention but he consistently puts himself in position for victories. Sauter also ran well back at Atlanta with a 3rd place finish and backed it up with a runner-up showing at Martinsville. Therefore, I believe he will be a factor again tonight and may just be worthy of the upset.

Outside of those top 3-4 guys, I am not sure I feel confident in many other driver’s chances to win the race. However, I am interested to see if guys like Noah Gragson and Grant Enfinger can run well after a pair of solid practices on Thursday. Enfinger scored a surprising win at Talladega last year that earned him additional seat time for 2017. While many would chalk victory towards a product of restrictor plate racing, Enfinger had several additional quality runs at places like Atlanta, Michigan, and Chicago. After an 8th place finish at Atlanta, I think Enfinger could be a valuable H2H type play in lower tier matchups if offered. Also, keep an eye on Ben Rhodes for similar matchup situations. Rhodes was really strong back at Atlanta and I think he is another guy with some upside for tonight’s event.

2017 Toyota Tundra 250 Race Picks

*More plays to come closer to race time

Johnny Sauter +750 (1.25 units)

Two Team Parlay

Christopher Bell +225 wins Toyota Tundra 250
Team 2 – Open
Risking 1 unit to win: TBD

H2H Matchups and Props

Christopher Bell -130 over Timothy Peters (4 units) *early forums play
Ben Rhodes -105 over Regan Smith (3 units) *early forums play

2017 GEICO 500 Race Picks

Posted by on May 6, 2017 in NASCAR Betting, Nascar Betting Blog, NASCAR Handicapping | 0 comments

2017 GEICO 500 Race Picks

2017 GEICO 500 Race Picks
NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series Betting Preview
Sunday May 7th, 2:20PM (EST) at Talladega Superspeedway
by Jay Horne of NASCARWagers.com, NASCAR Handicapping Service

The Monster Energy Cup Series will unleash 40 cars onto the high banks of Talladega Superspeedway tomorrow afternoon with the running of the GEICO 500. Earlier today Ricky Stenhouse Jr captured the pole for the GEICO 500 and will lead the field to the green flag on Sunday. However, Stenhouse is just 1 of 40 drivers that believes they can win tomorrow’s race thus behold the lure of restrictor plate racing. As we prepare for a wild and exciting race on Sunday, we take this time to breakdown the drivers that could end up in victory lane as we provide our 2017 GEICO 500 race picks!

Earlier today, we hit a profitable 25 to 1 bet (.75 unit) on Aric Almirola in the Sparks Energy 300. The win was just Almirola’s 4th win in in more than 300 starts between both the Xfinity and Cup Series. So what was the reason that we would put our money on a guy like Almirola earlier today? Behold the glory of the draft and restrictor plate racing. These plate races can provide opportunities for surprise winners and unsuspecting drivers to run upfront. As I described in the Sparks Energy 300 preview, betting plate races is all about probability and value. You need to choose drivers that have a high probability of running upfront/finishing races and also drivers need to have value in terms of odds to maintain a strong ROI for your betting card.

Therefore if we go by the probability and value model, then it does not make sense to back mostly favored drivers. Instead, we should be taking a few gambles on some drivers that have a habit of performing well in restrictor plate races that have bigger odds because surprise winners in plate races are not all that “surprising.” Therefore be sure to odd some value to your lineups if you are going to bet these races. I will be the first to admit that these plate races have a lot of luck involved but if you stack your betting lineups consistently with a very strong ROI then it will be worth the gamble when you hit!

For Sunday’s action, I would start off the conversation surrounding the guys that I really like which include Joey Logano, Brad Keselowski, Denny Hamlin, and Dale Earnhardt Jr. I think those 4 guys are clearly the best at superspeedway plate racing in the today’s Cup Series. Earnhardt Jr holds 6 wins at Talladega which is the 2nd most all-time behind his father Dale Earnhardt. Earnhardt along with Hamlin, Logano, and Keselowski have won the last 6 straight Talladega races. Keselowski and Logano have won 4 of the last 5 which has become a pretty dominate run by Team Penske. I would not fault anyone for wanting to back any of those drivers. However, I do think Earnhardt is overvalued despite the fact I would personally love to see him win another race at Talladega.

Outside of those “favorites” mentioned above, things really open up throughout the rest of the field. Just to throw out some names, I would list guys like Kevin Harvick, Chase Elliott, Jamie McMurray, Clint Bowyer, and Jimmie Johnson into the next group of drivers that I think could end up in victory lane. All of those drivers have had some superspeedway success with the exception of Elliott. However, I really liked the way Elliott drove back in February in the Daytona 500. He made really aggressive moves and showed the unique ability to hold guys behind him when he got out front. For that reason, I jumped on Elliott early in the week at +1650. Harvick, Bowyer, and McMurray all ran well back at Daytona and have Talladega wins on their resume. I really like Bowyer and McMurray as potential intermediate long shots if they can stay out of trouble. I also threw Jimmie Johnson’s name into that group for the simple fact that I don’t think you can ever count out the #48 team.

Of course there are plenty of other guys that could win tomorrow’s race. There are no right or wrong drivers to pick at Talladega because everyone ultimately has a relatively equal opportunity. Therefore, I think there are some legitimate long shots that are worth consideration. Pole sitter Ricky Stenhouse Jr has run well at the plate races and is over 40 to 1 odds. Trevor Bayne and Ryan Blaney are a few additional drivers that I think could be surprise stories on Sunday if things go their way. So if you are looking for a few names to add value to your lineup, they may be worth exploring.

2017 GEICO 500 Race Picks

Take advantage of the great odds for racing at Talladega courtesy of Bovada!

*More plays to come closer to race time

Denny Hamlin +1150 (1.25 units)
Clint Bowyer +1600 (1 unit)
Chase Elliott +1650 (1 unit)
Jamie McMurray +3000 (.5 unit)
Ricky Stenhouse Jr +4500 (.5 unit)
Ty Dillon +20000 (.25 unit)

Two Team Parlay

Brad Keselowski/Joey Logano +410 wins GEICO 500
Jamie McMurray +120 over Kurt Busch
Risking 1 unit to win: +1019