No More Texas, Ever
Everyone agrees. The All-Star Race at Texas was garbage. Lack of passing, fake late cautions, incomprehensible rules & scoring package. Don't bet it, won't bet it.
Trucks went as predicted for our subs, with 4-0 on matchups there. Gave back on Xfinity.
But with Charlotte this weekend, it's a larger (1.5 mile) track that plays like a short track.....because the race is so long.
400 laps if you don't get rained out, which is 600 miles. That magnifies the strongest cars & teams, and makes a fluke winner truly unlikely in Cup.
The books know that the Hendrick Chevy team had four in the Top 5 for this 600 mile race last year, and Kyle Busch finished third. That's a perfect fit with his average of 2.75 over his last four event-free races at the Charlotte oval.
The prices are pretty well set until Saturday evening practice & qualifying for Cup.
Larson, Elliott and Kyle Busch in a tier bracketing +600. Truex at +1000.....until he is awful in qualifying again.
The best values to Win seem to be in the next tier from +1200 to +1500 or so.......Would nibble on all of this group, except maybe softest on Reddick (whom I would shoot a dart at as Fastest Qualifier). Byron, Chastain and Hamlin all feel inexpensive here. Bowman opened as cheap as +1600 at MGM, and his price has softened in recent weeks.
Like Kyle Busch, Bowman is great at Charlotte. Fifth last year, led 51 laps in the shorter 2020 race (wrecked by somebody else), led most laps in the 2020 600 miler with 164 before being wrecked, 7th on 2019, 9th in 2018. Will nibble heavier on him than the rest in this area on price.
Kurt Busch is next, and is real bargain if he's still +2000 or cheaper. He opened +2500 at Barstool. Fast of late, won a couple weeks ago, excels on the 1.5 mile tracks, and has an average Charlotte finish of 6.7 in his last three event-free races here.
Only semi-appealing Ford might be Blaney, whose average finish is 7.75 over his last four incident free races here. Won the All-Star race, faster of late, made changes on his awful pit crew. Wish he was cheaper than +1200.
Only deeper threat I love has been the recent qualifying expert, Christopher Bell. Was +2500 on open, and would still buy there. A good bet the last month to qualify hot and pick up a bunch of CLV. Is +1400 by comparison at DK to get the Pole off of qualifying. Would grab a little of Bell to finish as Top Toyota if you can still get +700 or 800.
Will punch tiny, like 1/10 or 1/20 of a unit on our standard deep Cup threats who've won this year or look like they could. Buy a lotto ticket on Briscoe (+6000 at open on DK), Suarez (+6000 at MGM), Cindric (+5000 FD & DK) and Erik Jones (+7000). Briscoe has never done much here, nor has Suarez, but Cindric had a couple near misses in Xfinity and Jones had a 3rd in good equipment here with Gibbs in 2020. All of them are pretty much an auto bet every week you see them +5000 or cheaper.
May as well add Stenhouse to the group above. Has a 3rd, 5th and 10th for his last five Charlotte races, and is priced priced out beyond +5000. If nothing else, buy some Top 10. Buescher in the same area, with a similar set of deep Top 10s in the last five outings here.
Short Ford, mostly. Short Harvick. Short Truex unless he qualifies well. Think Reddick opens too expensive, like Blaney.
Look for some very forgiving prices on Top 5s if you are in one of the five BallyBet app states.
Unsure how to read the Xfinity card. Ty Gibbs came out here last year and closed strongly after Briscoe & Hemric led like 80% of the laps. Feels too pricey at +400. Books have real disagreement on how to price Allmendinger and Allgaier this week.
I've been punching Berry whenever I see him at +900 or cheaper, and that's worked once. No real serious drop downs from the Cup guys this week. Austin Dillon is running the #48 Big Machine Chevy that Reddick won in last week, but he feels too expensive at even +1200.
Trevor Bayne is also in the All-Star rent-a-ride #18 car from Gibbs Toyota. I will like him in some matchups, but think he will run very close to wherever Ty Gibbs ends up. Outside these two Toyotas, their teammate Brandon Jones and the four Dale Jr./Hendrick Chevys, not sure who else can win. Will shoot matchups to subs.
Finally, Trucks are Friday night, and Kyle Busch is slumming down to that race. Opened anywhere from -125 to +125, but is an overwhelming favorite. Ross Chastain will run a Truck as well, he opened at +800 and has been fast everywhere. And Ryan Preece is running both Xfinity & Trucks this week.
Will mostly play matchups here as well, but this is a track where Kyle's teammate John Hunter Nemechek may be just as strong, and can be had for +600.
JHN won in Trucks here last year, was consistently good in other Truck/Xfinity runs here, and was 13th & 16th in Cup in two races here in 2020. This may be his best track, and he shares the best equipment this weekend.
Last week's winner, Stewart Friesen, may be better at Charlotte than he was at Texas. Average Trucks finish of 4.3 in his last three incident free runs here, won last week. Defending Trucks Champ Ben Rhodes is only other guy with similar record of consistent finished the last few years. Average finish of 5.5 in last four runs. Both feel cheap out around +2000 for a dart and will be used in matchups.
Also pro Eckes & Majeski in matchups. Majeski feels cheap at +2500 until you see Busch/Chastain/Preece gumming up the guys trophy hunting. Majeski is in the second best team equipment in the series and has been fast everywhere of late. His shots at possible wins amplify as we hit the flat tracks soon. But, his best Trucks track, albeit from a small sample, may be here at Charlotte. 7th last year, 8th in 2020, and won an ARCA race here in 2019.