Plenty of Movement Among Drivers
Some of NASCAR’s efforts to enhance the sport and improve the spectator experience include more road courses, two new circuits, various track types and a preseason Clash at the Coliseum event for the second straight season.
Regarding the drivers for the upcoming season, one of the main themes is changing teams. The most significant move in the offseason was Kyle Busch cutting ties with Joe Gibbs Racing and signing with Richard Childress.
However, he’ll be replaced by Joe Gibbs’ grandson, Tyler Gibbs, who is moving up after a successful but controversial season in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. In addition, Tyler Reddick has also moved from JGR to 23XI. Kurt Busch will be stepping away from full-time racing, which created an opportunity for Reddick.
Noah Gragson is also moving up from the Xfinity Series after a successful 2022 season, where he won four straight races, to drive full-time for Petty GMS and A.J. Allmendinger makes his first full-time return to the Cup Series since 2018.
Fans Hope for Continued High Level of Parity
The 2022 season was a thrilling season for fans and those betting on the sport. Throughout the campaign, anybody could take the checkered flag. Austin Cindric proved that when he gained the first win of his career in last season’s Daytona 500 odds at +3000.
Last season saw a record 19 different winners in the 36 races. Five drivers also won their first career events. That’s also the most first-time winners in more than a decade. Fans are hoping the safety modifications set for the NextGen cars in their second season will continue to keep the playing field balanced.
Chase Elliot is the early co-favorite to win the 2023 NASCAR Cup Series Championship for those who bet online after five wins, 12 top-fives, and 20 top-10 finishes in 2022. He came close to winning the title twice after winning his first championship in 2020.
Elliott has made the playoffs every season as a full-time Cup Series driver and won more races than anyone else. However, when the playoffs came around, his average finish was only 17th.
Joey Logano seems to be forgotten by some people after winning his second Cup Series Championship in 2022. Last season, he had 17 top-10 finishes and 11 top-fives.
Admittedly, it’s less than Eliott, but he was known for giving great finishing performances at the perfect time. In addition, he’s happy to know that the 2023 championship race will again be held at Phoenix Raceway, a track where he’s been dominant.
Ross Chastain had one of the best-racing moves ever seen at Martinsville when his run along the outside wall helped him qualify for the championship race as one of the final four drivers. He had a hot start to the season and began to struggle toward the middle of the schedule. However, he still ended the season with excellent finishes and came away with two wins in 2022.
Chastain continuously surprises the rest of the field every week and has turned into a driver that is more than capable of winning a championship. This performance was only in the first season of his team’s existence, meaning there is no limit to Chastain’s potential for this upcoming campaign. He came up just short in the championship race at Phoenix but ran out of time in the final 20 laps.