NASCAR Betting Guide: Drydene 400
Martin Truex Jr. and Denny Hamlin are sucking up a whole lotta win equity for Sunday's Drydene 400 in Dover. And it's easy to see why.
Truex has won three of the five oval races using the 750-horsepower package in place this week. He led 100 laps in the other two. Hamlin doesn't have a win yet, but his worst average running position across the five races is fourth.
They're stupid good. As a result, they're both near the top of the odds board with Truex +350 to win at FanDuel Sportsbook and Hamlin at +550. Kyle Larson is nestled between the two at +400.
My win simulations think both are deserving of those short marks. Truex is at 18.2% with Hamlin at 14.3%, and only one other driver has double-digit win odds. Unfortunately, with implied marks of 22.2% and 15.4%, respectively, we can't quite get to them at those short numbers.
So, we can't bet the favorites, but they are there for a reason. That means if we want to bet an outright this week, we'd better be getting a very fair number. I think we do have that with a pair of teammates in the second tier. Let's go through them and then outline other places we can find value at FanDuel Sportsbook.
Joey Logano to Win (+1400)
Be sure to shop around on Joey Logano. You can get him at +1600 at other books, so make sure you're getting the best number available to you. But even at +1400, Logano is being undervalued.
Truex and Hamlin have been the dominant forces in the 750 package this year, leading the most laps and having the best aggregate average running position. The guy ranking third in both metrics (4.6 aggregate average running position and 259 laps led) is Logano. He won in Bristol, was runner-up in Phoenix, and finished third in Richmond. That doesn't seem like someone who should be so far behind the top options.
Logano's long odds are likely due to the fact that he has never won in Dover. He has, though, had a top-five average running position twice in the past five races here, both of which came in a lower-downforce package similar to this weekend's race. With how good his form is, we shouldn't be surprised if Logano breaks through soon.
My win simulations rank Logano behind just Truex and Hamlin at 10.1%. His implied odds at +1400 are 6.7%, and they're 5.9% at +1600. You can get wiggle room via betting him to podium at +400 (20.0% implied versus 27.2% in the sims) or to win group two (+370), but an outright bet on Logano is firmly in play despite the strength of Truex and Hamlin.
Ryan Blaney to Win (+2000)
The disclaimer on Ryan Blaney is the same as with Logano: shop around. Blaney's hanging at +2200 in multiple locations. But he's another guy who grades out well even at the shorter number.
Blaney ranks fifth in aggregate average running position in the 750 package, trailing Hamlin, Truex, Logano, and William Byron (+1600). He had top-five marks in both Phoenix and Martinsville, including 157 laps led in that Martinsville race. He just hasn't had the top-end finishes to show for it.
Blaney -- like Logano -- isn't at his best at Dover. He's never had a top-five finish here. He did, though, have a top-five average running position in last year's second race of the double-header, and he has had a top-10 average running position in four of the past six races here.
Track history is seeming to matter a bit less for Blaney. Before last week, he had never finished better than 13th at Darlington, and his best average running position was 14th. He topped both with an eighth-place mark in both the finish and average running position column. He has also historically struggled at Richmond, and Richmond and Darlington make up 40% of our sample on 750 tracks this year. Blaney has still been solid.
My win sims have Blaney getting the checkered flag 6.4% of the time versus 4.8% implied at +2000. He's not as much of a value as his teammate, Logano, but that's still a good enough edge to bet it.
Tyler Reddick to Podium (+1600)
Technically, my win simulations show value on Tyler Reddick to win. He's at 2.5% there versus 2.0% implied at FanDuel (+5000) and 1.5% at Fox Bet (+6600). If you want a longshot, he's your guy.
But from an edge perspective, the biggest gap between the sims and the implied odds is in his podium number.
The implied odds of a podium at +1600 are 5.9%. My sims have Reddick getting there 8.8% of the time. This was a bit surprising to me as Dover isn't one of the checklist tracks you turn to when thinking of Reddick. The data on him is good, though.
A big mark in Reddick's favor is last year's playoff race at Bristol, the most recent concrete race on the schedule. There, Reddick started 17th but had a 10th-place average running position and finished 4th. That demonstrated his upside. Reddick won at Dover in the Xfinity Series back in 2015 (his age-19 season) and added a win and a runner-up at Bristol in the Xfinity Series. We've seen dirt racers like Larson and Christopher Bell (+2800) run well on concrete, so it shouldn't surprise us that Reddick pops, as well.
Reddick's someone we can bet in multiple markets. This podium bet is the best in my simulations, but there's also a slight edge in his top-10 odds (38.0% versus 36.4% implied at Fox Bet). You can also bet him at -112 versus Kurt Busch at FanDuel, but we've got a different route for betting against Busch over at Fox Bet, as well.
Matt DiBenedetto Over Kurt Busch (+100)
Busch has had some issues in the 750 package this year. As a result, he's starting back in 28th. However, bookmakers still seem to like him. If you've got access, betting Matt DiBenedetto to top him head-to-head at +100 (available at Fox Bet) seems to be the best route to fading Busch.
In the five oval races using the 750-horsepower package this year, Busch's best average running position is 14th. DiBenedetto has tied or beaten that mark twice in five races. The two had the exact same average running position in Phoenix, Bristol, and Martinsville, but DiBenedetto dusted Busch in both Richmond and Darlington.
As a result, DiBenedetto's projected average running position in my model (14.8) is almost four spots better than Busch's (18.5). DiBenedetto will start 10 spots higher in the order, which doesn't hurt matters, either.
Basically, my model is much higher on DiBenedetto, but we can get him at even money to beat Busch straight up. We should take an edge like that any time we can get it.