NASCAR Betting - Kyle Busch, Jimmie Johnson Favored In FedEx 400

NASCAR bettors were enthralled last week that a longshot, Regan Smith, was able to win the Southern 500, but this week he's again a longshot, taking a backseat to a couple of favorites named Busch and Johnson.

It's time for the FedEx 400, at Dover International Speedway. They will run around the "Monster Mile" 400 times in a race that will be televised on FOX starting at 1 PM ET on Sunday.

Kyle Busch, who won the race last year, is the co-favorite in NASCAR betting, along with Jimmie Johnson, at +500. Last week's winner, Smith, is +8000.

This week, if you are talking about someone who would like to carry some momentum into the big race at Dover this weekend, it's 27-year-old Regan Smith, the surprise winner of the Showtime Southern 500 who amazed NASCAR bettors when he won for the first time in his four-year career last week, posting only his second top ten finish. Smith, who went without a win during his tenure in the Nationwide and Camping World Truck series, almost won at Talladega in 2008, but he was taken down because officials ruled he crossed below the yellow line to get ahead. He is one of those drivers who, as Carl Edwards (+800 in NASCAR betting to win this week), a former truck teammate and the second-place finisher on Saturday, was quick to point out, is as talented as anybody, but has been handicapped with equipment and resources that may not be enough to compete on a week-to-week basis with more well-heeled teams.

Smith is the only driver for Furniture Row Racing, which is based not in the NASCAR hotbed of Charlotte, but in Denver. The team made its debut in the Busch Series (now known as the Nationwide) in 2005 and operates on a shoestring budget compared to the likes of Hendrick Motorsports or Joe Gibbs Racing. Smith has produced its only two top ten results - a 7th place at the Daytona 500 this year and the Southern 500 win. Oddsmakers aren't very sentimental, however; he is only +3000 in NASCAR betting to finish in the top three this week.

And why not? Smith has never finished higher than 21st in six starts at Dover International Speedway, the site of this week's FedEx 400. But right now he is in 27th place in the Sprint Cup points standings; if he can get into the top twenty, his win starts to mean something extra, since this year the rules on eligibility for the Chase are different. The top ten drivers in points, plus the two with the most wins ranked 11-20, will get in.

The co-favorite in this race, Jimmie Johnson, who is +500 in the NASCAR betting odds, has won six times at Dover, including three of the last four races, and he has qualified in the top ten in six of his last seven appearances, including three poles. His Driver Rating of 116.3 is the best of any driver who is starting on Sunday.

Greg Biffle won the fall race at Dover in 2008 and, in the spring race the last two years, he has finished third and sixth. He won the pole in this particular event in 2008 and is listed at +2000 to win it all this year.

One of the more consistent drivers at Dover is Matt Kenseth, who has been in the top ten over the last six races, and in the top ten at this track in eight of the last nine races in which he has been able to go the full route. Kenseth is coming off three disappointing races where he failed to crack the top 20, and he can be had for +2000 in NASCAR betting. Kyle Busch, the co-favorite at +500, has won twice at Dover, including last year's spring race, and was the runner-up the first two times he raced on the track in Sprint Cup action.

Martin Truex Jr., who fired some of his pit crew before last week's race, didn't do too badly, posting his second top ten finish of the year, and he was able to elevate himself back into the top 20 in Cup points. He may shape up as a guy for NASCAR bettors to watch, at a rather long price. He did win this race just four years ago (in fact, that was his only Sprint Cup victory), and he sat on the pole last year. In between, sure, there have been some mediocre efforts, but he may be driving with some more peace of mind now. There was indeed a pit incident, but it was his own doing, as he missed the commitment cone on one scheduled stop and had to circle around again. The Dover location is actually not very far from his hometown in Mayetta, NJ. Truex is going off at +5000 in NASCAR betting.

NASCAR Betting - FedEx 400

Dover International Speedway, Dover, DE

Sunday, May 15 at 1:00 PM ET

NASCAR Betting Odds

  • Brian Vickers +3000
  • Carl Edwards +800
  • Clint Bowyer +2000
  • Dale Earnhardt Jr +2000
  • Denny Hamlin +800
  • Greg Biffle +2000
  • Jamie McMurray +3000
  • Jeff Burton +2500
  • Jeff Gordon +1200
  • Jimmie Johnson +500
  • Joey Logano +2500
  • Juan Pablo Montoya +3000
  • Kasey Kahne +2500
  • Kevin Harvick +1200
  • Kurt Busch +1500
  • Kyle Busch +500
  • Mark Martin +2500
  • Matt Kenseth +2000
  • Regan Smith +8000
  • Ryan Newman +3000
  • Tony Stewart +1200