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Coke Zero Sugar 400 Picks

This might come as a shock to you all, but I am stationing the Fade Train for NASCAR’s final regular season race. Probably the most frustrating part of taking matchups is when the guys you bet on DNF due to a wreck. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that Daytona is guaranteed to have at least one “The Big One”. Statistically, over the past 6 races at Daytona, there has been an average of 16.3 DNFs. Too risky for me to gamble on that.

I have 5 plays for tonight might be the most I’ve had all season, can you tell I’m excited? A little bonus here is that my fantasy football draft order will be decided by the order in which certain drivers finish. I was assigned Brad Keselowski, so let’s go #2! Here we go:

To Win:

Denny Hamlin to win +850: Pretty simple logic here. Denny Hamlin has given Kevin Harvick a run for his money this year as the Cup Series’ best driver. They seem to exchange wins and Harvick won last Sunday. Denny Hamlin also won this year’s Daytona 500 and there has been plenty of repeat/back-to-back winners this season. +850 for Denny Hamlin to win is an incredible payout so you have to at least sprinkle some here.

Top 3 Finish:

Martin Truex Jr. +450: The logic behind this is similar to why I’m taking Denny Hamlin to win. You kind of just have to ride this Truex top 3 train until it derails. He has a top 3 finish in 7 straight races and we’ve seen the odds go from +150 to -150 over that span. +450 for Truex to place top 3 won’t be seen again for quite some time. If you take nothing else, take this.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. +500: Like I was saying earlier, Daytona is an insane track with nearly half the field DNFing by the end of the night. Finding anyone with good history at this track is nearly impossible, the best bet is to look for some consistency at least. Ricky has the second best driver rating here which is one of my favorite stats to follow. That same reasoning is why I’ll also be taking Alex Bowman top 3 at +600. He has the third best driver rating and has never DNF’d this track.

Ryan Newman +850: Yeah, I know. Ryan Newman practically died at the Daytona 500 this year. But you know what he also did? He crossed the finish line in 9th place and prior to that crash looked like he was on his way to victory lane. As shocking as it sounds, Newman has the fourth best average finish at Daytona and has not DNF’d in his last 7 races here.

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Picks for Inaugural Race at Daytona Road Course

NASCAR has turned out to be pretty profitable for me. I’m 29-11 and up 22.75 units since NASCAR’s return and I’m hoping to carry that trend through this weekend. Of course, today is the Cup Series’ inaugural race at the Daytona Road Course; I think that this works in the gamblers’ favor. Typically people think knowledge is power and while I agree with that, it can also lead to a lot of overthinking and sometimes sticking to your gut is the best option. So let’s get right into my picks for today.

Fade: Kevin Harvick

  • Ryan Blaney to beat Kevin Harvick +110
  • Denny Hamlin to beat Kevin Harvick +110

With this being the first time any of these guys (except Kyle Busch) have raced the Daytona Road Course, no one is going to know when to hit the brakes and when to let off of the brakes going in and out of the turns. Kevin Harvick has the pole position and the most favorable pit stall. He’s also coming off of back to back wins and is currently the most dominant racer by far. I’m not so sure that the pole position is a good thing in this race; however, because he’s leading a pack of cars into a turn he knows nothing about. I’m essentially banking on Blaney’s past performances on Road Courses (won the inaugural Charlotte Roval race) and Denny Hamlin being the second most dominant racer, combined with Kevin Harvick’s past road course performances.

Let’s go 2-0 today ladies and gentleman!