The second stop in this year’s Contender Round of the Chase to the 2015 Sprint Cup title takes us to Kansas Speedway this Sunday afternoon for the running of the Hollywood Casino 400.
Last Saturday night at Charlotte, Joey Logano earned his spot in the next round of the Chase with a victory in the Bank of America 500. My top sports pick for that race was Kevin Harvick at +350 and he came close to paying off with a second-place run and Martin Truex Jr. rounded-out the Top 3. The following is a look at my top valued favorite, contender and longshot to win this Sunday’s race based on betting odds provided by Top Bet.
Top Valued Favorite
The pressure has been dialed-up on Matt Kenseth after a wreck last week at Charlotte dropped him all the way to 12th in the current Sprint Cup standings. Only the top eight drivers advance to the next round so you know that the No. 20 car will be racing hard this Sunday as a+700 third-favorite to win at Kansas. This team leads the Sprint Cup series in total victories with five and the last trip to the Winner’s Circle came at New Hampshire in the second race of the Chase. Kenseth posted back-to-back victories at Kansas in 2012 and 2013 and he finished sixth in the first race here this season.
Top Valued Contender
I came close to cashing-in on Denny Hamlin’s +1000 odds to win at Charlotte as my top valued contender with a fourth-place run in that race. He has been listed at the same exact odds to win this Sunday and I will take that bet. Hamlin guided the No. 11 car to a victory at Chicago in the opening event in these 10-race playoffs and he has now finished in the Top 5 in four of the first Chase events this year with a second-place finish at New Hampshire to go with last week’s fourth-place run. Hamlin ended-up seventh in his first race at Kansas this season and his lone career victory at this track was in 2012
Top Valued Longshot
I went with Dale Jr. the last two races as my top longshot, but I am shifting gears this week with a play on Jeff Gordon at +3000 odds to win. He has quietly put together a pretty decent run in this year’s Chase behind the wheel of the No. 24 car and right now this team is sitting in seventh-place in the current standings which would be good enough to get into the next round. Gordon is still waiting to make his first trip to Victory Lane in his final full-time season in the Sprint Cup series, but I am encouraged it could come this Sunday given a fourth-place run at this track earlier in the year in one of his three Top 5 finishes on the year.
Betting Odds for Other Notable Drivers
It is no big surprise that Kevin Harvick is once again at the top of the list to win at +450 at Pinnacle following a win at Dover along with his second-place finish last Saturday night. Kyle Busch is next at +600 and last week’s winner Joey Logano joins Kenseth at +700 with the third-best odds on the board. Jimmie Johnson is out of the Chase, but he joins Kurt Busch and Martin Truex Jr. at +800 betting odds to win on Sunday. Joining Hamlin at +1000 odds to win are Brad Keselowski and Carl Edwards.