Martin Truex Jr., celebrates during the running of the 71st annual First Data 500.

Martin Truex Jr., celebrates after the First Data 500. (Photo by Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire)

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads to the Homestead-Miami Speedway for the Ford EcoBoost 400 on Sunday, November 17. After 35 grueling weeks of racing and nine playoff races, it all comes down to this race. The championship four are Martin Truex, Jr., Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin. Three of the four drivers are Joe Gibbs Racing teammates, with Harvick being the lone wolf at Stewart-Haas Racing. It is likely the race winner will also come from one of these four drivers. Let’s break down each of the four drivers and find a winner.

Odds to win the Ford EcoBoost 400

DriverFord EcoBoost 400 Odds
Martin Truex Jr.+250
Kyle Busch+275
Kevin Harvick+300
Denny Hamlin+300

Denny Hamlin (+300)

If you read our article before the playoffs started, we encouraged grabbing a Hamlin futures championship ticket at (+600). It feels like he has the mojo to get it done out of the four drivers. He is also the only active driver in the field with two wins at the track. Hamlin should qualify well and get first crack at running up front over the rest of the competition. But can he stay there? We won’t turn our back on our championship futures ticket, so we believe he’s worth a play on Sunday.

Kyle Busch (+275)

Busch has just been OK lately. In his last 15 Cup races, Busch has five top-five finishes and an average finish of 11.93. Busch has finished in the top five in the last two races at Homestead but really doesn’t lead a lot of laps at the track. He is the most talented driver in the field, but something seems off. Busch’s attitude hasn’t been great, and he really hasn’t raced up to championship standards. If the slightest trouble happens to him Sunday, he will lose his cool. He is a major play against.

Martin Truex Jr. (+250)

Truex comes into this race as the race and championship favorite. That makes sense, as Truex has finished first and second in the last two races at Homestead. Truex has also been dominant on intermediate tracks over the last couple years and has ten wins since 2017. Expect him to qualify in the top 10 and be very fast Sunday, but if I’m going to bet a favorite, I need it to feel like a lock. He has done great things over these types of tracks, but he won’t have the car to beat Sunday.

Kevin Harvick (+300)

Harvick will be the car to beat Sunday. It is completely understandable to think think he might get bullied by the three Joe Gibbs Racing teammates, but this is a great track for Harvick. In 18 starts at Homestead, Harvick has 10 top-five finishes, including a win. Since he joined Stewart-Haas in 2014, he has yet to finish any worse than fourth at the track. In the last 15 Cup Series races, no driver has been better than Harvick, who has an average finish of 7.53. Ford and Harvick’s team will pour all of their resources into this car. Remember, Harvick’s nickname is “The Closer,” so expect him to do just that Sunday.


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