Written by: Byrds
It's California this week for Xfinity at Auto Club Speedway. Somewhere inland.
Big boring track with awful pavement. Like Michigan with a cheese grater for your tires. Few wrecks, little natural attrition.
Most important, we have literally no idea what to expect out of the new 670 horsepower Gen7 car package in the Cup race.
Last year, you had the restricted superspeedway package, the 550hp package on 1.5 mile tracks mostly, which Hendrick Chevys dominated, and the 750hp package everywhere else, from Bristol dirt to Phoenix. You knew Toyotas were competitive on the 750s, lame on 550hp, and Ford was mostly awful on both.
At the height of the Chevy success last summer, the weekly brand bet for Any Chevy to Win was down around even money, at +100 or so, with Toyota out around +200 and Ford out to +300 or even +350.
To get to that spread, we had watched more than 20 races and had good sense of price.
This year, it's a brand new car and 670hp Cup package. We haven't seen it race yet. We have no idea until Cup Practice and Qualifying after lunch on Saturday if any one make has huge advantage.
In off-season testing, there was no obvious faster brand in the tests at Charlotte or Phoenix and the like. Larson was fast.....but so was Blaney, among others.
So, knowing all that, why are the books assuming that Chevy is a massive favorite and Ford is buried at +325 or higher? That is pricing Chevy for perfection.
We saw Ford win both the Los Angeles exhibition and Daytona, in different packages. Might mean nothing.
But at +100 or so, Chevy sure as hell can't get any more expensive. And unless Ford places zero cars in the Cup qualifying Top 10, they won't get any cheaper than +350.
A couple of the Toyotas ARE fast here historically, specifically Kyle Busch (who has won like a dozen times here over all three top NASCAR series) and Martin Truex. So, you probably want some coverage on them at +225 for the whole group of six Toyota cars..... or cheaper if you can locate it.
But our call is 1.25U on Ford at +325, available at Caesar or Points Bet. We put it out to the subs at 12:05 AM on Wednesday at 3/4 Unit and raised to 1.25 Units earlier today on our weekly NASCAR pod and to subs. Spotted offshore today at +335, as well at BetUS.
Hell, you may want to raise it more than a unit. This feels like a CLV win, regardless.......let's see qualifying.
If we're wrong? You'll know before the Xfinity race starts on Saturday afternoon and can arb your way out of the trade by adding Toyota or Chevy.......but Chevy can't get much more expensive than +100. I'll let subs know to get out of the way if that happens.
We'll get some more California Speedway specific content out later, but this race rarely has a winner outside the top 10 or so cars. Lot of matchups coming on this card, not many longshots in either series.