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Daytona 500 Preview Article

VirginiaCavs

Man Crush on Kyle Guy
Daytona 500 Preview and Best Bet

Daytona 500
Sunday, February 14, 2021 at 2:30 p.m. ET (FOX) at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida.

How The Starting Lineup Will Be Determined

40 drivers will occupy the field for Sunday’s Daytona 500.

Three events will take place in order to determine the order in which the drivers line up.

The first event is the single-car time trials. You can follow this event on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. ET.

In this event, each driver will complete one lap. The fastest two drivers will qualify for the first row.

The next two events are duels, both of which will take place on Thursday evening. The first duel starts at 7 p.m. ET and the next one will start shortly afterward.

Each duel consists in 60 laps — and therefore 150 miles. Beyond the first row, Sunday’s event will be ordered according to the results of the duels.

I recommend keeping an eye on what happen in these preliminary events. It is important to see how the different cars run on the track.

Also, these preliminary results — and the starting lineup order on Sunday — provide important insight into the betting results.

Before last year, the past eight winners had started the race 14th or better. Six of those eight winners also started among the top 10.

Last year was an exception as Denny Hamlin won despite starting 21st.

This exception proves that starting position should not absolutely exclude any driver from betting consideration.

But still, history shows that starting lineup is an important factor for bettors to consider.

Race Info

The race will consist in 200 laps.

Since each lap is 2.5 miles long, drivers will have accumulated 500 miles by the race’s conclusion — if they have not crashed.

Those 200 laps take place on an asphalt track.

Daytona’s racing track is known as a superspeedway, of which there are two in the NASCAR Cup Series: Daytona and Talladega.

As the name suggests, a superspeedway will witness greater speeds.

One thing that support high speeds in Daytona is the banking of the track. With greater banking, a driver is able to collect more momentum for himself.

This track is banked at 31 degrees on the turns and 18 degrees at the front stretch. These are relatively high numbers.

People often group Daytona and Talladega together because they are both superspeedways.

But this couldn’t be more wrong. Talladega is more about mechanics, about a car’s ability to obtain higher speeds.

In contrast, Daytona is more about the driver. A driver’s tires will wear out relatively fast in Daytona. So drivers need to possess handling skill. They also need more strategic skills for passing Daytona’s narrow pathways.

We want to avoid being misled by drivers’ past results at Talladega because Talladega is too different from Daytona.

Who To Avoid

This will be a great event for bettors because higher-value options will make more sense to invest in.

The situation calls for us to avoid the bigger names that will typically draw more attention from the public.

One stay-away is Kevin Harvick, last year’s regular season champion.

Harvick was almost a must-bet throughout last season. But at Daytona, his average finishing position since February 2018 is 21.67, which ranks him 37th.

It’s true that average finishing position can be a bit misleading for this event because crashes are so common. Obviously, crashes will hurt one’s average finishing position.

The thing is: Harvick is not good at avoiding accidents in Daytona, which helps explain why he’s finished better than 19th only twice in his last 10 attempts at this track.

Also stay away from Denny Hamlin. Hamlin has won this event two consecutive times. But it’s statistically unlikely for him to win it a third consecutive time because it has never been done.

My Guy

My favorite driver to back for Sunday’s event is Ryan Blaney.

When Blaney finishes at this track, he’s done quite well. His last try at Daytona resulted in a sixth-place finish. Last February, he started 27th but still managed to finish second.

Relatively young at 27, youth will place Blaney in a positive situation because six of the last eight winners at superspeedway races were younger than 30.

Because the NASCAR Odds are so attractive and because a car crash could befall anybody if misfortune chooses to be unrelenting, it makes sense to invest in multiple drivers.

In addition to Blaney, I recommend Joey Logano, who is the only active driver that has a higher driver rating at this track than Blaney. Logano has also already won once in Daytona.

Best Bet: Ryan Blaney To Win & Joey Logano To Win (Odds TBA)
 

CPA-hole

Well-Known Member
Yes, Sir. Good to have racing back. Good write up. I like Blaney alot. He's kind of always the 'wise guy' play so his odds are always lower than they should be IMO. He's immensely talented but probably doesn't have as many wins as he should. This is a big year for him but a breakout season would be no surprise. I'll definitely have a few bucks to win on him Sunday though.
 

CPA-hole

Well-Known Member
The Toyotas looked fast in practice. We'll see how qualifying goes.

This is a very volatile race where the attrition rate is high. You can get some funky results and see someone other than the usual suspects winning more so than most tracks.
 

He Hate Me

Award Winning Blogger
My book does not have any matchups for the duels so for fun money, I am taking:
Newman in Duel #1 at +3200 (It is hard to not bet on Hamlin here, but he is only +350)
Bubba Wallace in Duel #2 at +1100 (Wallace will have Truex and Kyle Busch to help him, although Truex is starting in the back half of the field. This is kinda a conspiracy theory pick)
 

He Hate Me

Award Winning Blogger
My book does not have any matchups for the duels so for fun money, I am taking:
Newman in Duel #1 at +3200 (It is hard to not bet on Hamlin here, but he is only +350)
Bubba Wallace in Duel #2 at +1100 (Wallace will have Truex and Kyle Busch to help him, although Truex is starting in the back half of the field. This is kinda a conspiracy theory pick)
Had a good chance with both of these, Newman finished 3rd and Bubba finished 2nd. Although I bet on Bubba in the duels, I will be looking to fade him in head to head matchups for the 500. His 2nd place finish in the duel and fast car will likely have him head to head against much better drivers. He made a lot of mistakes in the draft and would use people to help him get back to the front and then hang them out to dry. He is not gonna have many people help him in the 500 if he does that, unless he is one of the top 6 cars on the last lap, when team, car make, and feelings do not matter as they are going for the win. His defacto teammates will help him (Truex, Hamlin (his car owner), and Bell). Kyle Busch will help him, but his car looks like trash.

Anyway, looking to bet against Bubba in head-to-head matchups and probably on Ryan Newman, Austin Dillon, and Ryan Preece pending who they are matched up against.
 

CPA-hole

Well-Known Member
Blaney -112 over Chase
McDowell--115 over McMurray

Truck Series

John H Nemechek +1200 Think this guy can win this series after dropping back from the Cup series. May need a race or two, but might not get 12-1 next week.
 
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CPA-hole

Well-Known Member
Had a good chance with both of these, Newman finished 3rd and Bubba finished 2nd. Although I bet on Bubba in the duels, I will be looking to fade him in head to head matchups for the 500. His 2nd place finish in the duel and fast car will likely have him head to head against much better drivers. He made a lot of mistakes in the draft and would use people to help him get back to the front and then hang them out to dry. He is not gonna have many people help him in the 500 if he does that, unless he is one of the top 6 cars on the last lap, when team, car make, and feelings do not matter as they are going for the win. His defacto teammates will help him (Truex, Hamlin (his car owner), and Bell). Kyle Busch will help him, but his car looks like trash.

Anyway, looking to bet against Bubba in head-to-head matchups and probably on Ryan Newman, Austin Dillon, and Ryan Preece pending who they are matched up against.

Those were solid. Bubba just about pulled it off. Haven't seen any H2Hs with him in it yet.
 

CPA-hole

Well-Known Member
Xfinity tonight. I like Harrison Burton -118 over Michael Annet. Burton is also 12-1 to win. I threw some on him. Cindric and Allmendinger will be tough to beat this year. But young guns like Gragson and Burton will be in the hunt every week.
 

He Hate Me

Award Winning Blogger
My book does not have these up yet.

McDowell -115 over McMurray is the best matchup
Larson has not shown anything, so Truex over him at -118 is good.
The chances that Stenhouse actually finishes the race is pretty low, so taking Almirola over him at -134 seems good, but it is tough to bet favorites in a race that can have a wreck and take out 1/2 of the field.
I really wish they had Preece against someone other than LaJoie. I wanted to bet Preece.
 

CPA-hole

Well-Known Member
I was looking at Truex too. He has to start from the back, which doesn't concern me that much. He's never won on a super speedway, but I think for h2hs vs Larson, he's a solid play.
 

He Hate Me

Award Winning Blogger
Xfinity tonight. I like Harrison Burton -118 over Michael Annet. Burton is also 12-1 to win. I threw some on him. Cindric and Allmendinger will be tough to beat this year. But young guns like Gragson and Burton will be in the hunt every week.
Jeb Burton is also an interesting pick for this race. He, like his father, is better on superspeedways. Jeb is driving a Kaulig Racing car this year who also do well at the superspeedways and their team always work well together in the draft.
 

He Hate Me

Award Winning Blogger
I was looking at Truex too. He has to start from the back, which doesn't concern me that much. He's never won on a super speedway, but I think for h2hs vs Larson, he's a solid play.
I am pretty sure this has happened to Truex before at Daytona and he just ran around the rear of the field to avoid any wrecks for the first 3/4 of the race. It is risky to have to come up through the pack when you decide that you need to, but that will probably be his strategy.
 
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CPA-hole

Well-Known Member
Agreed on Almirola and Stenhouse. Stenhouse probably has a better chance of winning the race than Almirola, but he's just as likely to destroy his carv during the 1st lap. Definitely a play against in h2h.
 

DaRaiders

Well-Known Member
I have some interest in Matt DiBenedetto, now in Wood Bros car he has raced well in plate races....but hasn't been able to stay off the hook.
Almirola has a strong car.
 

He Hate Me

Award Winning Blogger
Xfinity tonight. I like Harrison Burton -118 over Michael Annet. Burton is also 12-1 to win. I threw some on him. Cindric and Allmendinger will be tough to beat this year. But young guns like Gragson and Burton will be in the hunt every week.
I thought you had a win with Harrison.
 

He Hate Me

Award Winning Blogger
My book does not have Truex v. Larson and McDowell v. McMurray.

I took Almirola over Stenhouse at -129

I also bet Preece in the Top 3 at +2500 The top 5 has had at least one of the non-major teams in the last 5 Daytona 500s and sometimes two cars finish in the top 5 that are not one of the major teams.
 

CPA-hole

Well-Known Member
My book does not have Truex v. Larson and McDowell v. McMurray.

I took Almirola over Stenhouse at -129

I also bet Preece in the Top 3 at +2500 The top 5 has had at least one of the non-major teams in the last 5 Daytona 500s and sometimes two cars finish in the top 5 that are not one of the major teams.
I think Preece and Ragan are longshots that could sneak in the top 10.
 

KJ

KJ is my name, naps are my game.
Been following F1 this year, usually try with Indy car to keep up but not Nascar

Is this still considered the big one or is Brickyard and championship a bigger deal?
 

He Hate Me

Award Winning Blogger
Bubba to the back, he failed inspection twice. He will not just ride around the rear for most of the race and wait. This greatly increases his odds of wrecking since he has been so agressive.
 
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