5 Best Bets at Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series at Dover

5 Best Bets at Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series at Dover

The first round of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs is in the rear view mirror and four drivers were eliminated from the title picture after last week’s dramatic race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval.

However, just because Jimmie Johnson, Denny Hamlin, Erik Jones and Austin Dillon are no longer eligible to win the title, they will still be on track competing for wins the rest of the season.

It’s one of the many interesting nuances to the NASCAR playoff system and adds a unique layer to this week’s Gander Outdoors 400 at Dover International Speedway.

That quartet of drivers now has the burden of worrying about points racing and a championship lifted, which means focusing on winning the race is their only goal.

Meanwhile, the 12 remaining drivers in the title picture start Round 2 looking for a win to automatically advance to the next round, while balancing the idea of not throwing away too many points for fear of dropping out.

It should make for a fascinating day at the track known as the “Monster Mile,” a mile long concrete track that has a reputation for fast racing as well as wear and tear on machinery.

Drivers that success at Dover need a combination of skill behind the wheel to go along with a car that both handles well and will last the entire 400-mile distance, not always an easy recipe to create.

Here are five drivers worthy of consideration to bet on Sunday:

  1. Jimmie Johnson

    The all-time Dover race winner is none other than Johnson who missed winning by an eyelash last week at Charlotte and advancing to the next round of the playoffs.

    But Johnson has won a record 11 times at Dover, and in fact his last Cup win came at the track back in June of last year.

    Don’t let that drought fool you. Johnson will be potent on Sunday and came into the weekend on streak of four straight top-10 Dover finishes including the 2017 victory.

    The bitter taste of last week’s turn of events might just add some extra motivation to the seven-time champion’s effort as well. Bet Johnson to win at +2000 with 888Sport.

  2. Martin Truex Jr.

    The Charlotte finish that saw Truex just a few hundred feet away from victory until Johnson made contact going for then win didn’t sit well with Truex Jr. The usually even-tempered driver showed his displeasure by spinning Johnson out after the checkered flag flew.

    So there’s some added incentive for the defending series champion this week at Dover too. The New Jersey native considers is a home game and Dover is the site of his first career Cup win. He also won in 2016 and has not finished outside the top-five at Dover in the last four races.

    Back Truex to win at +375 with 888Sport.

  3. Kyle Larson

    Larson led 42 laps last week in Charlotte but was one of the many drivers involved in a huge accident that severely damaged his car. He finished just high enough to advance in the playoffs and comes to Dover with new life.

    Larson considers the one-mile track one of his favorites on the circuit and in nine career starts he’s finished worst than 11th only once. That string includes a pair of second place performances.

    Bet Larson to win at +800 with SugarHouse.

  4. Kyle Busch

    There aren’t many tracks on the schedule where Busch should not be considered a favorite, and he comes into Round 2 of the playoffs still holding on to the No. 1 seed.

    While there are some gaudy finishes on his recent Dover resume, including a 35th at NASCAR’s first visit to the track in May, they don’t tell the whole story. Busch has had some bad luck to be caught in late accidents knocking him out of races including the earlier one this season.

    He won at Dover last year and like Larson considers the track a favorite with characteristics that play into his strengths. Take Busch to win at +275 with 888Sport.

  5. Kevin Harvick

    One of Harvick’s seven wins so far this season came in the May Dover race. It was his second win in the last six races held at the track.

    Last week was a very atypical outing for Harvick, who didn’t have the best day on the Charlotte road course but in reality did not need it since he was locked into the next round simply by starting the race.

    Expect things to return to normal for Harvick and company at Dover. He’s right behind Kyle Busch on the playoff grid and a quick win in the second round takes the pressure off to perform at the next two tracks on the schedule (Talladega and Kansas), both with reputations where the unknown has happened in recent years.

    Bet Harvick to win at +275 with SugarHouse.

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