There are two more Cup Series races to go before the playoffs get cut from 16 drivers down to 12. You can expect things to be a little different in regard the schedule, as the next two races will be run on a Saturday instead of the traditional Sunday outings. The day may be different, but the goal for all 16 drivers still in the hunt remains the same, which is to stay above that cut line and live to race another day. This weekend, the action shifts to Richmond, one week after Kevin Harvick delivered another win at Darlington. He is beginning to look very tough to catch at the top, but let’s look at the favorites for this weekend, along with their NASCAR odds.
NASCAR Federated Auto Parts 400 Betting Analysis
Denny Hamlin (+400)
If anyone has a legitimate shot at catching Harvick and winning it all, you need to say that it is Denny Hamlin. With time running out, though, he needs to start picking up some wins. He already has 6 on the season, so it’s not as if he can’t do it. The problem that he faces is that he has just 1 win in the last 7 races compared to the 4 that Harvick has in that same time. The good news is that Richmond might just be the place where he gets the job done. He has been in the top 10 there in 8 of the last 9 runs, although just one of those was a win.
Martin Truex Jr. (+400)
Truex Jr has just 1 win this season, yet he still finds himself sitting in 6th in the driver standings, which is a testament to just how consistent he has been this season. He has landed in the top 10 in 17 of the 27 races this season, with 11 of those being in the top 5. While he has come close a lot this season, he might just be able to get his nose in front this weekend, as he has won in each of the last 3 races he has run at Richmond. He finished 3rd in the race prior to those two. Truex Jr. looks like a very good bet.
Kevin Harvick (+450)
This has been a season to remember for Harvick, but you can bet that he is not going to be satisfied with anything other than clinching the NASCAR Championship. The good news for the driver standings leader is that he seems to be getting stronger with each passing race, winning 4 of the last 7, including the opening race in the playoffs at Darlington last weekend. He has not had a ton of success at Richmond, with his last win there coming in 2013. That said, he has not finished worse than 7th in his last 4 races there.
There is still a lot of driving to be done before this year’s champion can be officially crowned, but it is hard to look beyond Harvick, who is now sitting at +160 to win it all. Those might be the best odds you are going to get on him at this late stage of the season. Then again, maybe you like someone else to come from behind and take it. Be sure to check out the Cup Series odds before this race.