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Gibbs Great Value Pick in Echopark Automotive GP

For the first time this season, the NASCAR Cup Series field will be making left and right turns when they roll into the Circuit of the Americas for the Echopark Automotive Grand Prix. This poses something of a different group of drivers atop the NASCAR betting odds, led by three-time road course winner and inaugural COTA winner Tyler Reddick.

Will it be one of the usual suspects, or might we see another surprise road course winner? We had our finger on the pulse last week, correctly predicting Denny Hamlin’s victory at Martinsville. Can we do it again? Let’s break it all down with our NASCAR best bets of the week.

Gibbs Great Value Pick in Echopark Automotive GP
Gibbs Great Value Pick in Echopark Automotive GP


SVG (+1000) Leads Field Of Part-Time Threats

Perhaps the biggest storyline of the weekend is the first Cup race of the year for SuperCar Champion Shane Van Gisbergen, who shocked the NASCAR world by winning at the Chicago Street Course last summer, becoming the first driver to win his first Cup race in 60 years. He followed that up with a solid 10th-place run at the Indy Road Course. But the NASCAR betting odds makers aren’t letting SVG slip through the cracks, giving him the third-best odds to win at +1000.

But SVG will not be driving the famous Project 91 car for Trackhouse; rather it will be the chartered 16 fielded by Kaulig Racing. He will be a teammate of AJ Allmendinger, making his third start of the season after returning to the Xfinity Series full-time this year. While the Dinger won the series’ most recent road course race at Charlotte last season, he has crashed out of the last two COTA races. His +1400 NASCAR odds to win outright are an appealing longshot, though a safer bet that still poses strong value is +220 for a top-five. He had two top-fives in five road races last year, as well as a sixth at Sonoma.

One ringer you should avoid is Kamui Kobayashi, driving a third entry for 23XI Racing. While an incredibly talented racer, the Japanese-born driver had an adventure in his first career Cup start at Indy last year, resulting in a 33rd-place finish.

NASCAR Top-5 Pick: AJ Allmendinger (+250)


Gibbs to Visit Victory Lane For The First Time

It’s no surprise that Reddick, at +450, is the NASCAR betting odds favorite. He has three road course wins in the last two seasons and has finished inside the top-10 in all three COTA races. But we are banking on another of his fellow Toyota drivers to take the checkered flag. And we have a great group to choose from. Martin Truex Jr. was once the most formidable road racer in the series and returned to victory lane at Sonoma last season.

Hamlin always seems to run at front at road courses but doesn’t have the finishes to show for. Even Christopher Bell has two career road course wins and had three top-10s last season. All are fair options when making your NASCAR picks, but we are going in a different direction. Not only do we think there will be a sixth different winner to start the season, we think it will be the first career win for Joe Gibbs Racing protegee Ty Gibbs.

Gibbs had three road course top-10s in his first full-time season but has been a force in the Xfinity Series. While never at COTA, he’s won at four different courses in the second-tier series. Most importantly, though, the 21-year-old is off to an excellent start in 2024, scoring three top-10s in the first four races, including two top-fives.

Gibbs seemed destined to score his first Cup win last week at Bristol, winning both stages amidst tire chaos. But it was a blown tire in the late going that doomed his chances. We think he will be winless no more.

NASCAR Pick: Ty Gibbs (+1200) to win the Echopark Automotive Grand Prix


Will Hendrick Return As Cream Of The Crop?

For the longest time, Chase Elliott was considered the best road racer in the series, and he still might be. From Watkins Glen in 2019 to Road America in 2021, he won six of the eight races. But that Road America win was his most recent road course victory. The sport’s perennial most popular driver hasn’t won any race since Talladega in 2022. Is this where he finally breaks through? His NASCAR betting odds to return to victory lane are +725.

Kyle Larson also boasts a great deal of road course success, with four wins for his career. But like Elliott, none of those came in 2023. That said, it is incredibly difficult to not bite on the opportunity to get a Larson outright win at +1200. We will pass, in favor of his +200 top-five odds.

But neither of these two is our favorite from the Hendrick Motorsports staple. One of our favorite road course picks is Alex Bowman. Though he’s never won before, he has finished in the top-10 in all three COTA races, including two-straight top-fives. We like Bowman’s even-money odds to continue that streak, and if you believe in his ability to continue the top-five streak, those odds are +300.

NASCAR Top-5 Pick: Kyle Larson (+200)

NASCAR Top-10 Pick: Alex Bowman (Ev)


Buescher, Cindric Offer Top-10 Value

One of the most surprising values on the BetUS Sportsbook is Chris Buescher. While the RFK Racing driver has never been to victory lane on a road course, he has finished in the top-10 in nine of the last 10 races, the lone exception being an 11th at Indy in 2023. We are all over his somehow +110 odds to continue that trend. And we don’t mind taking a chance on his +325 odds to score a top-five.

Another mainstay in the top-10 at road courses in the last few seasons is Michael McDowell, who made the playoffs last season thanks to his win at Indy. In the last 10 races on these configurations, he has six top-10 finishes. However, his odds are not nearly as appealing as Buescher’s, currently sitting at -120.

We mentioned Bowman for finishing in the top-10 in all of his COTA starts. Another driver with that resume is Ross Chastain. But he has gone a step further, winning the 2022 race and finishing fourth in the other two. His winning odds sit at +1200 while the NASCAR betting odds tab his top-five chances at +200. The Melon Man carries a far more modest -150 odds to score a top-10.

While he hasn’t finished in the top-10 in every COTA start, Austin Cindric is 2-for-3. He led laps in his Cup debut in 2021 before settling for 25th. But in his two full-time seasons, he’s notched a top-10. His odds to do so again are even money.

NASCAR Top-10 Picks: Ross Chastain (-150), Austin Cindric (+125)




Questions of the Day

What is the best value bet?

Chris Buescher +120 to finish in the top-10.

Where will betting-favorite Tyler Reddick finish?

Reddick will finish in the top-10, albeit with unappealing -350 odds.

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