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NASCAR Odds & Betting Lines
Betting on NASCAR races is much different than betting on head-to-head matchups in the various sports leagues across North America. Every race is a 40-car free-for-all in which the globe’s best stock car drivers constantly go toe-to-toe. But with the competition being so balanced, bettors who do their homework can gain an edge and cash on winning drivers at odds way higher than the traditional -110 offered on various sides when betting on football or basketball.
Buckle up and get ready to improve your NASCAR betting game!
How NASCAR odds work
Unlike most major sports in North America, there are no point spreads to consider when looking at NASCAR odds. Bettors will mainly stick with win bets using moneylines provided by oddsmakers.
How to read NASCAR odds
When looking at NASCAR race odds, all drivers, with very few exceptions, will have a "+" next to their odds. This indicates that a bettor will receive odds above even money when they hit a wager on that driver. For example, if Kyle Busch is favored to win a race at +500, that means a bettor would receive $50 in profit for every $10 they invest, or $60 in total, if Busch is successful.
If a driver has a "-" next to their odds, that means a bettor will receive a return of below even-money on their winning wagers. For instance, -150 odds means a bettor would have to risk $15 to make a $10 profit ($25 total return).
Tips on how to win with NASCAR odds
A good strategy for NASCAR betting is to focus on two or three drivers that you think will do well in an upcoming race. There are plenty of things that can go wrong for even the best drivers on a given raceday, like pit road penalties, crashes or mechanical breakdowns, so it’s not a great idea to put all your eggs in one basket.
However, if you’re betting three or more drivers to win a given race, be sure to protect your profit margin. For instance, if you wager $10 each on Kyle Busch at +300, Chase Elliott at +800 and Brad Keselowski at +1000 to win a given race and Busch is victorious, your profit is a mere $10 – hardly worth the risk.
Picking a Winner
Sites like driveraverages.com and racing-reference.info are excellent resources when making NASCAR predictions. They offer invaluable data on how drivers have fared in the past at certain tracks, measuring things like wins, Top 5s and laps led. Initial NASCAR race odds are often determined by prior performances at that particular circuit. BetAmerica Extra also features expert picks for every NASCAR race all season long.
NASCAR betting lines will typically fluctuate depending on practice speeds and qualifying speeds. NASCAR.com usually offers charts on how the cars fared in short and long-run practices. Drivers that place near the top in both short and long-run speed are often very dangerous on raceday.
Qualifying, which lasts for no more than two laps, is not the greatest barometer of how a car will fare over a 400-mile or 500-mile race, but it does determine starting position for the races. Starting on the pole is a boon, as the leader gets all-important "clean air" to their car and can avoid traffic and potential accidents. Drivers that start toward the back have more work to do to gain track position and are more likely to get into wrecks.
NASCAR race odds don’t contain too many prop bets, but there are some intriguing wagers to consider beyond the traditional "win bets." For instance, bettors can select which manufacturer will win a given race (Ford, Chevrolet or Toyota), with moneyline odds set accordingly.
Betting to win the championship is by far the most popular NASCAR futures market. The season is long – 36 races to be exact – and stretches from mid-February to mid-November. As a result, NASCAR championship odds will vary only slightly from week-to-week until the playoffs begin (final 10 races). The championship race, which will be held in Phoenix in 2020, will offer only four drivers a chance to win the hardware (determined by best finishing position).
If you’re not sure who will win a given race but are certain that one driver will not fare well, look no further than the head-to-head matchups market to get your bet down.
head-to-head matchups are just as they sound – select one driver to finish ahead of the other. Your chosen driver need not win the race, nor even finish in the Top 20, so long as the opposing driver does worse. Moneyline odds can range anywhere from +150 to -150, depending on the two drivers in question.
In group betting, bettors are asked which driver will record the best finish of a given set of drivers – usually five or more. Favorites are typically assigned even-money odds or lower.
Place bets work much like place and show bets in horse racing. You can select a driver to finish in the Top 3 or Top 5 in a given race, but at odds significantly reduced from their win odds. For instance, if Denny Hamlin is +600 to win a race, his odds to finish Top 3 could fall to about +150.