The countdown to the Daytona 500 and the start of the 2021 NASCAR season is now very much on, with less than 2 weeks to go before the first race of the year. Every NASCAR fan has their favorite driver, and everyone has an opinion on who will win at Daytona on Valentine’s Day. There are a few drivers who have a solid history at the track and who the bookies very much like to win, but there are also a few who have to be considered a bit of a dark horse. Since we have already had a look at the current favorites, we thought it might be a good idea to look at the drivers who could potentially make an impact at a very good price. That said, let’s get right to it so you can continue making your bets against their NASCAR odds.
Longshots and Dark horses that Could Win the 2021 Daytona 500
Larson will return to the track at Daytona with something to prove and a whole lot of amends to make. He was suspended last season after an incident involving a racial slur and has only now just picked up his first sponsor for the coming season. It might be a lot to ask of Larson to come in off such a long time away from the track and deliver something special, but he is certainly talented enough to do so. It is worth noting that Larson has never won at Daytona, so when you combine that with everything else, he is certainly a dark horse, but one worth keeping an eye on.
This is a driver who does have a win in the Daytona 500, albeit way back in 2008. You might think that the gap between wins is an issue, but let’s not forget that were it not for a crash in the final lap last year, when Newman had the lead, he would have probably won again. Given how the 2020 race played out, you can bet that Newman is coming into the season opener as a man on a bit of a mission. His experience at this track certainly makes him a good longshot pick.
This is another driver who has had success at this track, winning the Dayton 500 in 2018, when he held off Bubba Wallace to take the checkered flag. His performances at Daytona since then have perhaps not been as good as he would have liked, but his track record there is still solid. Besides the win in 2018, he also has 6 career top 10 finishes at Daytona. Dillon is consistently in and around the top 10, so there is no reason to believe he can’t get his second Dayton 500 win this year.
In his first full season in the Cup Series, Bubba Wallace came as close as you can get to winning the Daytona 500, finishing second to Austin Dillon in an absolute thriller. This season, Wallace will be racing for Michael Jordan’s team and is setting a goal of two wins in the series. He is very much going to be a longshot heading into this race, but he is also a driver that I believe is worth a look.