Let’s flashback to over a decade to when we witnessed Kyle and Kurt Busch wreck at the Charlotte Motor Speedway back in 2007 costing one another a potential million dollar payday in the process.
It was the purest example of a sibling rivalry manifesting itself at the highest level of competition.
“Isn’t this old news, though?” you say.
Also, there aren’t even any FedEx Cup points to be gained.
True on both, but this should serve as a reminder that this race isn’t your average all-star game or sporting event. There are 1 million dollars on the line, and every one of these drivers are true competitors or they wouldn’t be in the position they are.
The Monster Energy Cup portion of NASCAR’s All-Star weekend will consist of two races. The first is a qualifying race for the following competition. The NASCAR All-Star Open field will consist of all the drivers who failed to qualify for the All-Star Race.
Qualifiers are all drivers who have won a race in 2017 or 2018, also any driver who has won an All-Star race before, the winner of each of the 3 stages of the All-Star Open, and one fan-voted driver that will be determined on race night.
That will make 21 drivers total for a fast 4-stage race. The stages go like this: 30 laps then 20 followed by another 20, and in the final stage only 10 laps.
Bovada has odds on both the All-Star Race and the Open Race. Let’s take a look at those odds, first for the Open then the All-Star Race, and find the drivers that will give you the most value Saturday night.
Odds to Win NASCAR Monster Energy Open
- Chase Elliott: +375
- Erik Jones: +400
- Aric Almirola: +450
- Daniel Suarez: +550
- Alex Bowman: +700
- Paul Menard +850
- Darrell Wallace Jr: +1600
- Chris Buescher: +2200
- Ty Dillon: +2200
- AJ Allmendinger: +3500
- Mike DiBenedetto: +8500
Will this be Chase Elliott’s first win? It’s highly likely this is the first time as the favorite, so I’m going to say…maybe. That’s the best I can do for a guy who has yet to see the checkered flag in the Monster Energy Cup Series. At (+375), Chase is, of course, the favorite but I don’t want you to put all your cash on him.
There are several other drivers in this field whose odds hold more value than the biggest name in the field, Elliott.
Erik Jones and Aric Almirola have run well all year and could each contend for a spot in victory lane. Erik’s name sticks out in several spots on the stat sheet and has led more laps than any driver in this race with 75.
Daniel Suarez ranks 4th in average finishing position (8.5) at Charlotte Motor Speedway in the past two years, and the man from Monterrey, Mexico isn’t afraid of a battle of nerves.
Mike DiBenedetto is my sleeper at (+8500). He seems to be one of those who may not be the best guy out there but he is almost always there in the end. He has been running for a career-high 97% of laps this year.
I don’t blame you if you want to spread your money around amongst several drivers in this race. Erik Jones, though, has run better all year than the rest of the drivers so I like him at (+400).
Odds to win NASCAR Monster Energy All-Star Race
- Kevin Harvick: +400
- Kyle Busch: +550
- Brad Keselowski: +750
- Ryan Blaney: +750
- Kyle Larson: +850
- Martin Truex Jr: +900
- Joey Logano: +1000
- Kurt Busch: +1400
- Denny Hamlin: +1600
- Clint Bowyer: +1800
- Jimmy Johnson: +2500
- Austin Dillon: +3300
- Kasey Kahne: +8500
Here we go, boys! This race should be a lot of fun. There won’t be any time to switch channels to check the score of the basketball game really quick. With 4 short stages and no required pit stops this year, it should make for an extremely exciting race.
Will it be a predictable race? That’s up to debate. If your predictions have been a Kevin Harvick win every week, you aren’t doing badly this year. Hey, at (+400) he is worth some cash.
Not unlike the Open Race, there are several other drivers than the favorites that hold some significant value.
Joey Logano loves to get after it and who doesn’t want to make 500 bucks off of a fifty dollar bet? Joey leads all other drivers with an average finishing position of 6.9 and runs the intermediate tracks as well as “most” other drivers.
I emphasized the word “most” there because Martin Truex Jr has dominated the intermediate tracks in the past two years with an average finish of 7.1 including 10 victories.
In the past two years at Charlotte, Martin has led nearly 50% of all the laps run and averaged a 4.5 finishing position in those races.
Let’s hope we don’t get rained out, but it’s been a washout on the east coast of late and the rain is supposed to keep hammering throughout the week.
Between NASCAR’s Monster Energy Open and the All-Star Race that follows, a load of nonstop action and betting fun can be had.
In the first race, Erik Jones (+400) has passed the eye test and is better on paper than any of the other drivers.
For the All-Star Race, spread some cash between the big 2, Kyle Busch and Kevin Harvick, and a bit on Joey Logano.
As James Headfield says, give me fuel and give me fire!