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FireKeepers Casino 400 Betting Preview: Books Favoring the Wrong Drivers

FireKeepers Casino 400 Betting Preview: Books Favoring the Wrong Drivers
Kyle Larson, driver of the #5 HendrickCars.com Chevrolet, drives during practice for the NASCAR Cup Series Verizon 200 at the Brickyard at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 30, 2022 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Photo by Logan Riely/Getty Images via AFP.

The NASCAR Cup Series heads to Michigan International Speedway after a chaotic end to last week’s event in Indianapolis. Keep reading for our FireKeepers Casino 400 picks.

Four races remain before the NASCAR playoffs get underway. The Cup Series will head to a two-mile banked oval this weekend, and we’ve already seen one track just like it this year: the Auto Club Speedway. That gives us a bevy of data to use for this weekend’s event.

Unfortunately, the books have the same numbers we do. Some of them have responded accordingly, but fortunately, others have not. Make sure to get your action down as early in the week as possible before the books take corrective action.

Here are my outright picks for NASCAR’s FireKeepers Casino 400 at Michigan International Speedway track in Brooklyn, MI (odds via Barstool Sportsbook, Caesars Sportsbook, DraftKings Sportsbook, and FanDuel Sportsbook.

FireKeepers Casino 400 Odds

FireKeepers Casino 400 Odds Analysis

The books mostly all have the same two favorites: Chase Elliott and Kyle Busch. The two drivers generally sit between +550 and +650 across the market. Kyle Larson, who won at Auto Club, owns the third-best odds. Most books have him at +700, although Caesars has him at +600 and Barstool at +750.

Last year’s winner, Ryan Blaney, sits at +1200 almost everywhere. Barstool has him at +1300. Tyler Reddick, who won last week and dominated at Auto Club until a late-race incident with Wiliam Byron, sits between +1000 and +1200.

FireKeepers Casino 400 Picks

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Who Will Win the FireKeepers Casino 400?

Larson (+750)

Larson should be favored here. Chase Elliott’s hot streak came to an end last week, and Kyle Busch hasn’t recorded a top 10 finish in seven races. Further, Larson has won at Michigan three times. His win at Auto Club earlier this year marked his second victory at the track, and his five wins at NASCAR’s pair of two-mile speedways tie him with Kyle Busch for the second-most wins at the venues. Busch’s last win at a two-miler came in 2019.

Larson’s five wins are all the more impressive because only one came in Hendrick Motorsports equipment. Further, he entered the Cup Series almost a decade after Busch, and he missed the Michigan double-header in 2020. He owns just 19 starts at these tracks to Busch’s 56.

Since joining Hendrick Motorsports in 2021, Larson has made two starts at two-mile tracks. He finished third at Michigan last year despite leading the most laps at 70 and recording the best driver rating of 132.9. He then won at Auto Club this year after leading the second-most laps.

Blaney (+1300)

Taking Blaney or Reddick is a good value bet. But Blaney has more to lose than Reddick does after the latter’s victory at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. As a result, I think there’s more value to be found in Blaney’s outright markets.

The No. 12 team has been solid but not dominant this year. However, Team Penske showed considerable speed at Auto Club back in February as Logano and Blaney recorded the fourth and fifth-best driver ratings, respectively. Blaney may not have the best car on Sunday, but he proved in last year’s Michigan win that he can outperform in underwhelming equipment.

Lastly, this is a home race for the two American auto manufacturers, Ford and Chevrolet. The Blue Ovals have won seven of the last races here, and Blaney is their best shot for extending that streak to eight.

Jones (+3000)

Jones is the best long shot of the week. He turned heads at Auto Club back in February by leading 18 laps and keeping his car near the front all day. Jones finished second in both stages and third at the race’s end. He recorded the best driver rating, too at 122.7.

Of course, some books have adjusted their markets. Jones sits at +2500 at almost every book, which gives him the same odds as drivers like Kevin Harvick, Daniel Suarez, and Alex Bowman. Jones’ equipment doesn’t quite warrant that. However, you’ll find Jones listed at +2800 on BetMGM and +3000 at Caesars. Take the value at Caesars before they adjust.

I advise bettors to split a unit between Jones’ outright markets and a few position markets. Jones is +750 to score a top three at FanDuel and +350 to score a top five at DraftKings. But since BetMGM is less bullish on him than those books, you should wait for that book to post their position markets before committing your bankroll.

Where to Bet FireKeepers Casino 400

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FireKeepers Casino 400 picks made 8/2/2022 at 6:22 p.m. ET