While not really a week off, the All-Star Race is an opportunity for the NASCAR drivers to hit the track without the same level of stress that they would have in a regular race, where every point earned takes them a step closer to a playoff spot in the Cup Series. It was Kyle Larson who took the checkered flag in the All-Star Race as he continues to perform at a high level in his comeback season. This weekend, the action will shift to Nashville, a track where only 13 of the drivers in this race have any type of experience. That may make things a little harder to predict, but let’s take a look at who the bookies like for the Ally 400 at the Nashville Superspeedway, along with their NASCAR odds.
NASCAR Cup Series: Ally 400 Open Betting Preview
Kyle Larson (+400)
Last year was a difficult one for Larson, but it was one that was of his own making. He was suspended for the year in the early part if the season after making a racist remark during a live eRacing event. He has returned this season and has looked fantastic up to this point. If you count the All-Star Race, Larson has now won 3 in a row and is about as hot as it gets. In Cup Series races, he has won 2 in a row and has been either 1st or 2nd in each of the last 5 races. It is a little surprising that he is not 1st overall in the driver standings, but you do get the idea that it’s only a matter of time.
Martin Truex Jr. (+600)
Truex Jr. started the season on fire, winning 3 of the opening 12 races, but he cooled off a little in the weeks that followed. He ended up finishing 19th, 35th and 29th in a poor 3-race stretch, although he did see a bit of a return to form in his last race before the All-Star break, finishing 3rd in that one. That rough stretch saw him drop down the driver standings, putting him in 6th heading into this weekend. That adds a little bit of a pressure, as another poor run could see him drop further still. On the positive side of things, he did get hot in the 2nd half of the season last year, so we may see him heat up again starting this weekend.
Denny Hamlin (+700)
2021 is shaping up the way in which last year did for Denny Hamlin. He spent the majority of the season sitting near the top, hot on the heels of Kevin Harvick, before coming up just a little short in the playoffs. He has spent most of this season on top of the standings, which is somewhat surprising when you consider that he is still looking for his first win of the season. He has, though, been ridiculously consistent, landing in the top 10 in 12 of the 16 races this season.
Chase Elliott (+700)
The defending champion is sitting just off the pace at the moment, as he is down in 3rd in the driver standings. Last season. Elliott got hot in the second half of the season and went into the playoffs in peak form. He has just 1 win on the season to this point, but there are signs that he is ramping things up, as he has had 3 straight podium finishes ahead of this race, He might just be the one to watch this weekend.