NASCAR XFINITY Series at Homestead Odds, Picks: The Matchup Bet To Make for the Contender Boats 250 (Saturday, Feb. 27)
Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images. Pictured: Austin Cindric, driver of the #22 PPG Ford
- The NASCAR XFINITY Season continues with Saturday's Contender Boats 250 (4:30 p.m. ET) at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
- Based on live NASCAR odds, Tyler Reddick and Noah Gragson are the favorites to win this afternoon's race.
- Based on edges in equipment and on pit road, PJ Walsh details a plus-money driver matchup bet he's making for the NASCAR Contender Boats 250.
Following races on Daytona International Speedway’s 2.5-mile oval and road course layout, the NASCAR XFINITY Series visits Homestead-Miami Speedway for today’s Contender Boats 250 (4:30 p.m. ET, FS1).
Homestead is a very fun 1.5-mile track that offers plenty of tire falloff and multiple grooves of racing. This combination results in plenty of side-by-side action while allowing the faster cars to pass more easily than at one-groove tracks.
At this point, I have little interest in future bets for today’s race (but follow me on Twitter in case I ultimately change my mind).
On the other hand, there is one plus-money driver matchup that has caught my eye for the Contender Boats 250.
NASCAR XFINITY Series at Homestead Pick
*Odds as of Saturday at 7 a.m. ET and via Westgate SuperBook
Austin Cindric (+130) over Tyler Reddick
As my Twitter bio implies, I love Reddick’s talent, especially at this racetrack, so I’m not betting Cindric based on skill alone.
But I believe Reddick is overpriced for today’s race, which is trickling down to matchups as well.
While Tyler has seen plenty of success at this track in his career, including two XFINITY Series wins, those victories were with powerhouse teams JR Motorsports in 2018 and Richard Childress Racing in 2019.
This year Reddick is driving for Our Motorsports, which is an up-and-coming team, but not yet on the same level of the top organizations.
Interestingly, Reddick is listed as the driver of RSS Racing’s No. 23 car (instead of his normal Our Motorsports ride) for today’s race, but FOX Sports’ Bob Pockrass suggests this is simply some points juggling to ensure Reddick makes the field.
Conversely, Cindric drives for Team Penske, which brings extremely fast cars to the track each week.
Austin won six races and the XFINITY Series championship in 2020, and has carried over that speed to this season with a win on the Daytona oval to kick off the year and a runner-up finish on the road course last weekend.
And it’s not like Homestead is a bad track for Cindric, either.
The XFINITY Series ran a weekend doubleheader at Homestead last June, and the No. 22 Ford posted the second- and third-best driver ratings in those events.
On top of the speed Cindric showed last season, he’s in the best position possible to succeed again this afternoon.
He’ll start on pole, which means he’ll take the green flag at the front of the field, and he’ll also have a great pit stall.
Conversely, Reddick will start the race back in 38th, and I don’t think he’ll have much trouble picking his way to the front of the field, but as I mentioned above, I’m bullish on Cindric having the faster car.
In addition, Reddick has a brutal pit stall compared to Cindric, and here’s why that matters:
Notice how Cindric (the No. 22 car) has an opening in front and the No. 99 of Stefan Parsons behind.
No matter what happens in the race, Cindric will have a clear path out of his stall without needing to worry about navigating around a car that is pulling in or out directly in front of him.
Additionally, it’s reasonable to assume that Parsons, who is very unlikely to be a race contender, won’t be pitting at the same time as Cindric, meaning the No. 22 should have an opening behind his stall as well for an easy in and easy out each stop.
Reddick (the No. 23) is wedged between Daniel Hemric (No. 18) and A.J. Allmendinger (No. 16), both of whom should be among the fastest cars in today’s race as well.
This means Reddick will likely be pitting at the same time as those two cars and will have to dodge both of them while getting into and out of his stall, which can slow down his time on pit road.
Cindric should have no such issues.
I expect that Cindric will have a faster car than Reddick, but even if he doesn’t, a late caution and trip down pit road could get the No. 22 out ahead of the No. 23 and steal this matchup for us.
I have no problem betting this down to +115.