NASCAR’s Sprint Cup series has the week off before heading to Bristol on Aug. 20 for the first of four races before the start of the 2016 Chase. The Chase is an elimination-style playoff that consists of 10 races to this season’s Sprint Cup Championship and TopBet has recently updated its futures odds to win this year’s title.
Both Kyle Busch and Brad Keselowski have posted the most point race wins so far with four apiece and there are four other drivers that have cemented a spot in the Chase with two wins on the year. The battle for the other 10 positions in the 16-driver field will continue to rage on over the next few weeks. The following is a look at my top favorite, top contender and top longshot to go on and win this year's Sprint Cup.
Top Valued Favorite
Kyle Busch's win at Homestead-Miami in the final race of the 2015 Sprint Cup season sealed his first career title and I really like his +450 odds to win the championship again in 2016. He has easily been the most consistent driver this season with another seven Top 5 runs to go along with his four wins in the first 22 point race events and he has led a total of 987 laps. Busch already knows what it takes to win a Chase and his current form remains solid with a victory at Indianapolis late July followed by a sixth-place finish last week at Watkins Glen
Top Valued Contender
Moving down the list a bit, I believe this is some solid value in Denny Hamlin's +900 betting odds to win his first career Sprint Cup title. He started this season with a thrilling victory in the Daytona 500 and just this past Sunday he bested the field on the road course at Watkins Glen to officially punch his ticket to the Chase with a second win on the year. The No. 11 Toyota bowed out of last year's Chase in one of the early rounds to finish ninth in the final standings, but back in 2014 Hamlin was in excellent position to win a title as one of four drivers in the Championship Round in that final race at Homestead-Miami.
Top Valued Longshot
Anyone following Nascar and my weekly free picks this season already knows that I am high on rookie Chase Elliott's chances to make some noise behind the wheel of the No. 24 Chevrolet. Through the first 22 point race events on the schedule, he has made his way into the Top 5 on six different occasions including a third-place finish at Dover and a second-place run at Michigan. He is in 13th-place in the current standings so there is no guarantee that he will even qualify for the Chase, but a small play at +3000 odds still offers quite a bit of value in my book.
2016 Sprint Cup Futures Odds for Other Notable Drivers
Kevin Harvick won a Sprint Cup title in 2014 and his odds to win again this year are set at +500. Brad Keselowski is next on the list at +600 and he offers quite a bit of value given his multiple trips to Victory Lane this season. Joey Logano is sixth in the point standings and his odds to win it all have been set at +700. Six-time Sprint Cup Champion Jimmie Johnson has been flying pretty low under the radar lately, but he rounds out the top five drivers on the list at +900 betting odds to make it No. 7.
Martin Truex Jr., Carl Edwards and Matt Kenseth join Hamlin at +900 and things drop off from there with Kurt Busch next on the list at +1600, which are the 10th-best odds on the board.