NASCAR Betting Preview: Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol

David Schwab

Wednesday, August 16, 2017 3:38 PM UTC

Wednesday, Aug. 16, 2017 3:38 PM UTC

NASCAR’s Monster Energy Cup Series returns to Bristol Motor Speedway for the running of the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race in a prime-time slot on NBC starting at 7:30 (ET) Saturday. Following this race, there are only two more point-race events before the start of the playoff.

I went with Kyle Larson as my top-valued favorite last week at +550 odds and it paid off with his victory at Michigan. Martin Truex Jr. turned in another strong run by taking second and Erik Jones helped his chance to make it into the field of 16 for the playoff with a third-place finish.

The following is a look at my top valued favorite, contender and long shot to win Saturday night’s race at Bristol based on betting odds provided by 5Dimes.


Top Valued Favorite

With Kyle Busch, Truex Jr. and Larson once again dominating the top of the betting list at 5Dimes, I am going to stretch the odds a bit by going with Brad Keselowski at +950 odds to win his third Cup series race of the season. He has become a forgotten man behind the wheel of the No. 2 Ford lately with finishes outside the top 10 in the last two events, but this team still has the most runs inside the top five this season with 11. It is holding down the fifth spot in the current standings with 720 total points. One of the main reasons for the long odds this week is an average 17.1 finishing position at Bristol, but Keselowski also has two career wins here.


Top Valued Contender

Finding value further down the list has been tough this year given the dominance of drivers like Larson and Truex, but I do believe there is quite a bit of value in Kevin Harvick’s longer +1350 odds to win Saturday night. He has the No. 4 Ford team in fourth place in the current standings with 787 points on the strength of several segment wins in individual races as well as eight total runs inside the top five. His lone victory of the year came on the road course at Sonoma. The main reason I am going with Harvick in this race is his recent track record at Bristol. He has finished inside the top three in three of his last four trips around this short track, including a victory in this race last year.


Top Valued Long Shot

This is the time of the year when I am strictly looking for value in drivers who need a victory to keep their playoff hopes alive, and the one who fits the bill this week is Dale Earnhardt Jr. at +4400. Time is not only ticking on his chances to make it into the field of 16 given the No. 88 Chevrolet’s current place in the standings (22nd), but time is ticking away on his chance to end his Cup series career competing for a racing title. Current form does not add all that much value to these odds, but the fact that Dale Jr. did finish second in this race last season adds some hope for NASCAR fans all over the country that he can pull off a miracle win Saturday night.


Odds for Other Notable Drivers

As mentioned, Kyle Busch at +500, Truex Jr. at +550 and Larson at +600 are once against at the top of the list at 5Dimes to win this week’s race. Joining Harvick at +1350 are Joey Logano, Denny Hamlin and Matt Kenseth. Both Jimmie Johnson and Chase Elliott have +1650 betting odds round out the top 10 drivers on the betting list.

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