NASCAR Betting Guide: Bank of America ROVAL 400
Picking NASCAR race winners is nearly impossible because of how much has to go right on the track to end up in victory lane. The pit stops have to be perfect, the driver has to avoid pit road penalties and accidents, and crew chiefs need to make the right adjustments to be one of the best cars at the end of a race to give the driver the chance to win.
There is some very basic recent historical data that can be a starting point for NASCAR betting strategy: there are not a lot of drivers who can win. Only 11 drivers have won a race this season, and 7 of them have won more than once. In short, there is a very small pool of drivers to realistically put into a portfolio, but the underdogs can always breakthrough on small money tickets. Last week at Richmond, despite winning the spring race, Martin Truex Jr. was not the favorite at +550 odds and had bettors panicked by a late race spin, but he rallied to cash with his second straight victory.
Below we will cover the best bets of the weekend, but numberFire always has you covered when it comes to NASCAR. Check out the track preview for additional information on the history at this track, and the driver preview will give you some names to watch in this weekend's race.
Here's where to put smart money for the Bank of America ROVAL 400:
At the Top
Martin Truex Jr (+380): How could a betting preview start with anyone besides MTJ? He's won the first two races of the playoffs, taking first last week at Richmond even despite a spin. Truex was also leading in the final corner of last year's inaugural ROVAL event, at worst looking at his fifth straight top-two finish on a road course, but was wrecked by a desperate Jimmie Johnson. That is his only blemish in the last six road-course events as he's finished first or second in all others. He is a worthy heavy favorite this weekend.
Chase Elliott (+800): Chase Elliott whooped some tail last time the Cup Series was on a road course. He led 80 of 90 laps at Watkins Glen, winning all three stages, as well. He's won two in a row at Watkins Glen, which is by far the closest comparison to the ROVAL because of its speed. With that being the case and with minimal data at the ROVAL, Elliott appears to be a solid bet at the fifth-highest odds on the board.
Kyle Larson (+900): To the surprise of several, Kyle Larson had the dominant car last year at the ROVAL, leading 47 laps. Larson has never been short on speed at road courses as he's qualified in the top five in 11 of 13 career road races, including three poles. His trouble has been staying there, with only four career top-10 finishes in these races. Larson, though, was well on his way to his first road course win at the ROVAL last fall, but he crashed entering Turn 1 on a late restart. Still, his success even in a limited sample makes him an intriguing bet this weekend.
Ryan Blaney (+1800): Rarely does a defending race winner find himself as high as 18-1 to repeat, but here sits Ryan Blaney. Did he get lucky with the Johnson/Truex crash on his way to a win last year at the ROVAL? Absolutely. But it is a tremendous example of why to place value on consistency when betting, because being around the front will eventually break a driver's way. Blaney has certainly been that, with top-five showings in each of his last three road races. Blaney is the best value on the board at this spot, but Kurt Busch (+2000) is an honorable mention as another great road racer with longer odds.
William Byron (+8000): Odds usually close prior to the start of on-track action, and William Byron this weekend is one reason why. Byron was 80-1 on Friday morning, but he posted third in practice and won the pole, so when odds re-release after final practice, he will likely close somewhere between 30-1 and 40-1. Still, even at those odds, Byron is a capable road course racer as he won Stage 1 at Sonoma in June, and he has the best starting spot on the grid. If you were lucky enough to snag Byron at 80-1 on Friday, qualifying was a treat, and Sunday could be even sweeter.
Austin Swaim is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Austin Swaim also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username ASwaim3. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.