3:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN
There are no trends to look back on ahead of Sunday’s race at Nashville Superspeedway.
The race is the first Cup Series race at the 1.33-mile concrete oval. Nashville previously hosted Xfinity Series races but last hosted a NASCAR race in 2011. A lot can change in NASCAR in a decade.
Trying to use a team’s previous intermediate track performance may be a fool’s errand too. The only other concrete tracks on the NASCAR schedule are Bristol and Dover. Both are shorter than Nashville and race differently.
Dover could — could — be the best comparison. And while it’s imperfect, the best way to figure out how you want to bet Sunday’s race is to look at who was fast at Dover and who has been fast so far this season.
And guess what? You end up with the same drivers.
Hendrick Motorsports went 1-2-3-4 at Dover when Alex Bowman beat teammates Kyle Larson, Chase Elliott and William Byron. Hendrick has been the fastest team in the Cup Series so far too. Those four drivers have combined for seven wins across 16 races. No other team has more than five wins this season.
Unsurprisingly, all four Hendrick drivers are among the top seven favorites to win on Sunday. Here’s what you need to know to bet on Sunday’s race. All odds are provided via BetMGM.
Kyle Larson, +275
Martin Truex Jr., +550
Chase Elliott, +750
Denny Hamlin, +800
Kyle Busch, +800
William Byron, +1000
Larson is the overwhelming favorite after he’s won the last three races. He’s going for three straight points race wins on Sunday after winning the All-Star Race. Truex is the only other driver in the Cup Series with three wins while Elliott has won twice in 2021. Hamlin is the points leader and searching for his first win while Byron won at Homestead and has been a top-10 machine.
Good mid-tier value
Kevin Harvick, +1200
Ryan Blaney, +1500
Harvick and Blaney rank 10th and 11th among the favorites. Harvick hasn’t nearly been as fast as he was in 2020 but he’s probably going to win at some point this summer. And if you can get him at 12-1, you should take it. Blaney won at Atlanta earlier in the year but hasn’t finished better than eighth in the 10 races since. That’s why his odds are so relatively high.
Don’t bet this driver
Austin Dillon, +5000
Dillon was 14th at Dover and has just one top-five finish all year. While he’s 12th and points and has six top-10 finishes, it’s hard to see how he’d have the speed to run up front on Sunday.
Looking for a long shot?
Aric Almirola, +15000
Almirola has descended into long shot status this season. He’s 28th in the points standings and has finished in the top 10 just once. But he showed some speed on Sunday at Texas and that may be a sign that Stewart-Haas Racing has found some speed. He’s the only driver with odds greater than +10000 that you can make a remotely convincing case for a win.
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