NASCAR Talladega Betting Odds & Picks: Target Longshots at 500


Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: NASCAR Cup Series driver Erik Jones

Oct 13, 2019, 12:51 PM EDT

Talladega Superspeedway will host the second race of Round 2 of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoffs. A wild Dover race featured major mishaps for three playoff contenders, as Chase Elliott, Joey Logano, and Ryan Blaney all finished 34th or worse. The eight other playoff drivers finished inside the top 13. These results should create interesting dynamics heading into Sunday’s third Superspeedway race under the 2019 rules package.

The top three drivers in points — Martin Truex Jr., Denny Hamlin, and Kyle Busch — could be points racing and running a relatively conservative race until the end. That’s because any finish on the lead lap should put these drivers in a strong position to advance to Round 3 heading into next weekend’s elimination race at Kansas.

Kevin Harvick is also likely in the same boat, sitting 42 points ahead of the elimination bubble. Kyle Larson, meanwhile, has clinched a spot in the next round and can race for stage wins and the overall victory to accumulate playoff points.

The rest of the playoff drivers are likely racing each other for the final three transfer spots. Each of them would love to clinch a spot in the next round with a win at Talladega. Only Ryan Blaney is really in a must-win situation, sitting 22 points behind the cut line for advancement.

With three or four drivers possibly playing it conservative, and some drivers in must-win mode, it could open up the door for longer value at a track that’s already known for longshot wins.

Below, I’ll take some insights from the first two Superspeedway races of the year, as well as past Superspeedway history and playoff dynamics, to find a few longshot bets offering value to win today’s 500.

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