Federated Auto Part 400 at Richmond International Raceway marks the end of NASCAR’s Sprint Cup series regular season schedule. Follow us as contenders and longshots will race for the win.
Carl Edwards made his way to Victory Lane this past Sunday night at Darlington to post his second point race win of the season. Brad Keselowski ended-up second and for the second week in a row Denny Hamlin finished third. My top favorite for that race was Kevin Harvick, but he faded to fifth after starting third.
Top Valued Favorite
All the favorites have secured a spot in this year’s Chase so in an effort to stretch the odds a bit this week I am going with Matt Kenseth at +800 betting odds as my top-valued favorite. While the last two races have been forgettable with finishes outside the top 20 drivers, but prior to that the No, 20 car won at Pocono and Michigan in a span of three races. The team is sitting in seventh-place in the current Sprint Cup standings with 776 total points. Kenseth has raced fairly well at Richmond lately with a seventh-place finish or better in five of his last six runs.
Top Valued Contender
Denny Hamlin has been hot lately with those two-straight Top 3 finishes, so this week I am going to ride a hot hand with his +1000 odds as my top valued contender that he breaks through with an outright victory this time around. It has been a solid season for the No. 11 car with a total of nine Top 5 finishes including a victory at Martinsville in late March to lock-up a spot in the Chase. There is some concern with his recent performance at Richmond, but going back to the 2009 season, Hamlin has won twice here in a Sprint Cup race.
Top Valued Longshot
Any time you can get a top Sprint Cup driver at longshot odds you have to jump at the chance to cash-in. This betting strategy leads me to go with Dale Earnhardt Jr. at +2000 betting odds as this week’s top-valued longshot. The No. 88 car is sitting in third place in the current standings with 855 points and along with nine Top 5 finishes it has posted victories at Talladega and in the second race at Daytona. This team has been pretty consistent heading into this race with a Top 10 finish in four of its last five races. Dale Jr. does have three career victories at Richmond, but the main reason his odds are so high for this race is an average finishing position of just 13.5 at this track.
Betting Odds for Other Notable Drivers
Kevin Harvick has not won a Sprint Cup point race since mid-March, but he comes into Richmond as a +450 favorite to end that drought on Saturday night. Brad Keselowski will be looking to parlay a strong run last week with a win this week as a +500 second-favorite. Kyle Busch is third on the list at +600 followed by Joey Logano at +700. Kurt Busch won the first race at Richmond this season and his odds to pull-off the sweep have been set at +900.