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Categorized | NASCAR

2018 Food City 500 Odds, Picks and Predictions: Favorites and Bad Bets for the Food City 500

2018 Food City 500 Odds, Picks and Predictions: Favorites and Bad Bets for the Food City 500: It’s time for some short track racing as the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads to Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend. While the half-mile track is roughly the same size as the site of the first short track race of the year, Martinsville Speedway, Bristol is a much different animal.

Thanks to the track’s high banks, drivers are able to maintain enough speed to earn Bristol the nickname “The World’s Fastest Half-Mile.” Needless to say, the track is a little unique and be a little more unpredictable than some. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t a few drivers that have figured out Bristol.

Let’s take a closer look at my top bets for Sunday’s Food City 500, and a look at some of the favorites that I’m staying away from this weekend.

2018 Food City 500 Odds, Picks and Predictions: Favorites and Bad Bets for the Food City 500

Favorites to Bet

Kyle Busch (7/2)

He went to victory lane at Bristol last summer, and Busch’s six wins at the track are the most among active drivers. He has also led more than 150 laps in three of his last five starts here, and he has led 2,116 laps at the track overall, while no other active driver has even led 1,000. No driver has been able to dominate Bristol as regularly as Busch, and if you like to go with the safest bet, he is your man this weekend.

Kyle Larson (7/1)

Larson has been making noise at Bristol since he first step foot in NASCAR, and it is only a matter of time before he wins at the track. He actually had a shot at the sweep last year, leading the most laps in the spring race and leading 70 laps more in the summer event. Larson finished in the top 10 in both races, and he has proven he has the speed to run up front and contend for wins at Bristol.

Joey Logano (12/1)

He’s off to a solid start in 2018, and Logano has been of the steadiest performers at Bristol since joining Team Penkse. In 10 starts at the track in the No. 22, he leads all drivers with six top-10 finishes. More importantly, he is the only driver with multiple wins at the track in that span. He is a great value at 12/1 this weekend.

Erik Jones (12/1)

It might seem strange to back a driver who has never won a Cup race, but Jones has already flexed his muscle at Bristol. As a rookie last season, he was running in the top five in the spring race before suffering a cut tire. In the return trip in the summer, Jones led a race-high 260 laps and finished second after a battle with Kyle Busch. Don’t overlook the sophomore this weekend.

Bad Bets

Martin Truex Jr. (6/1)

Truex is one of the best drivers in the series today, but Bristol is just not his best track. In 24 career starts, he has managed just three top-10 finishes. Even in recent years when he has been dominant, the success has translated to Bristol. Truex has only one top-10 over the last 10 races here, and he has finished 20th or worse seven times in that same span. Truex is not the favorite to back this weekend.

Jimmie Johnson (15/1)

I guess the good news is that Johnson is the defending winner of this weekend’s race, but he’s not even a shell of the driver that went to victory lane last spring. It’s been 30 races since his win, and Johnson has exactly one top-five finish in that span. This season, a ninth-place finish is his only top-10. At this point, you are betting on a longshot. Johnson is way overvalued at 15/1.

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