Points Leader Kyle Busch Takes Winning Streak into Prime Time

David Schwab

Thursday, April 19, 2018 1:03 PM UTC

Thursday, Apr. 19, 2018 1:03 PM UTC

NASCAR’s Monster Energy Cup Series rolls into Richmond Raceway for its first prime-time race of the season. Saturday night’s Toyota Owners 400 (6:30 ET; FOX) is the ninth points race on the 2018 schedule and the first of two events at this venue.

NASCAR: Toyota Owners 400 Preview & Picks

It usually pays to ride a hot hand when betting on sports. Kyle Busch’s second-straight Cup Series victory with a trip to the Winner’s Circle in last week’s Food City 500 was my second winning ticket in a row with him as my top favorite. Kyle Larson finished second in that race and my top-valued contender paid off on a Top 3 ticket with Jimmie Johnson taking third.

The NASCAR Cup Series betting board for this Saturday night’s race at Richmond is up at 5Dimes, and the following three drivers offer the best value to win in their posted odds.

Top-Valued Favorite: Kyle Busch +350

It took two days of racing for Busch to get his second checkered flag in a row with Sunday’s action at Bristol spilling over to Monday due to rain. This latest victory continues an amazing run for the No. 18 Toyota with a finish of third or better in each of the team’s last six Cup Series events. Busch’s lead in the Cup Series standings continues to widen from the rest of the field with 365 total points. He now led a total of 466 laps through his first eight races.

Last season at Richmond, Busch took 16th in this race and he ended up ninth in the second race here. However, his entire body of work at this venue over the course of his Cup Series career has produced four victories and a solid 7.4 average finishing position.

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He is a seven-time Bristol winner! Retweet to congratulate Kyle Busch and the No. 18 team on their back-to-back trips to Victory Lane. pic.twitter.com/aExDLIwAys

— FOX: NASCAR (@NASCARONFOX) April 16, 2018

Top-Valued Contender: Joey Logano +1000

Earlier in his career, longer odds on Logano would have normally been a high-value play with your auto racing picks. He has faded from the spotlight a bit his last few campaigns, but the value is back for Saturday's race. The No. 22 Ford has been a model of consistency this season with seven runs inside the top 10 in eight events. While only two of those runs were inside the top five, this performance has been good enough to move this racing team into second place in the standings with 306 points.

The biggest value in his odds to win Saturday night is a victory in this race last season. This was Logano’s second career victory at this track in a Cup Series event after winning the first race of the season here in 2014.

Top-Valued Longshot: Ricky Stenhouse Jr. +10000

If you are going to take a flyer on a longshot to win a Cup Series race, sometimes it is worth the risk to really stretch the odds. This is Stenhouse’s sixth full-time season racing at NASCAR’s highest level and he finally broke through last season with a pair of victories at Talladega and Daytona. After posting seven-straight finishes outside the top 10 this season, he finally showed some flashes of that previous success with a fourth-place run at Bristol. The No. 17 Ford led the previous race at Texas for 10 laps before car troubles ended his day.

As far as his past track record at Richmond, Stenhouse’s best run came in this race last season when he finished fourth after starting from that same position.

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