NASCAR Sprint Cup Betting: GoBowling.com 400 at Pocono

David Schwab

Thursday, August 1, 2013 4:05 PM GMT

Thursday, Aug. 1, 2013 4:05 PM GMT

The race to the Chase continues this week with the NASCAR Sprint Cup series’ second stop of the season at Pocono Raceway for the GoBowling.com 400.

This Sunday’s race is set to get underway at 1 p.m. ET and will be broadcast nationally on FOX.

Ryan Newman helped his chances to make this season’s Chase with a huge victory in last Sunday’s race at the Brickyard in Indianapolis. Jimmie Johnson remained in the hunt all day long to finish second and Kasey Kahne took third. Our top value racing pick to win this race at +1600 was Greg Biffle but he finished a disappointing 24th.

The following is a look at a few of the top favorites for this Sunday’s race along with our top value pick based on NASCAR odds provided by Bovada.

Favorites

In what has been a reoccurring theme all season long, Jimmie Johnson has been opened as the favorite to win Sunday’s race at +300. He has already driven the No.48 car to victory lane four previous times this season (five if you add in the win in the non-point All-Star Race) and he has been a permanent fixture atop the Sprint Cup standings with 740 points. The real value in these odds is Johnson’s victory at Pocono in early June. He finished 14th in this race last year, but this followed three-straight fourth-place finishes at this track. His average finishing position here is 8.7.

The first of two second-favorites to win this race at +700 is Kasey Kahne. Last week’s third-place finish at Indianapolis adds some value to these odds but the No.5 car has raced well all season long with one victory and five other top-five finishes. It is sitting in ninth place in the standings with 564 points. Kahne’s first trip to Pocono this season resulted in a very forgettable 36th-place finish, but he was the runner-up in this race last season. His only career Sprint Cup victory at Pocono was in the first race here in 2008.

The other driver at +700 is long-time Sprint Cup veteran Tony Stewart. The No.14 car has had its share of ups and downs this season, but its current form has dramatically improved with a second-place finish at Daytona in early July followed by a fourth-place finish in last week’s race. The team is currently in 11th place in the standings with 558 and in pretty good shape to make the Chase with a previous win at Dover. Stewart finished fourth in the first race at Pocono this year to extend his streak of top-five finishes at this track to three. He has won here twice in his career and has an average finishing position of 11.0

The fourth-favorite to claim the checkered flag on Sunday is Denny Hamlin at +900. This has been a season to forget for the No.11 team with multiple wrecks including one that caused its driver to miss four races earlier in the year due to a back injury. Nonetheless Hamlin is always a threat to win at Pocono with four career Sprint Cup victories at this track. He finished eighth in the first race here this season and has an average finishing position of 10.5.

Top Value Pick

There is a wide array of quality drivers with longer odds this week but we have focused our attention on another long-time Sprint Cup vet Jeff Gordon at +1000. The No.24 car has been relatively quiet this season with four top-five finishes in the first 20 point races, but this team knows this may be its best chance to get a much needed win that would go a long way towards locking down a spot in this year’s Chase. That is because Gordon comes in as the defending champ in this race after last season’s victory in the GoBowling.com 400. He has a total of six career victories at this track and an average finishing position of 10.2.

NASCAR Pick: Jeff Gordon at 10/1 at Bovada

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