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Categorized | NASCAR

2018 Quaker State 400 Odds, Picks and Predictions: Favorites and Bad Bets for the Quaker State 400

2018 Quaker State 400 Odds, Picks and Predictions – Favorites and Bad Bets for the Quaker State 400: After a wreck-filled trip to Daytona International Speedway, the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads to Kentucky Speedway this weekend for Saturday night’s Quaker State 400. The race will be the just the sixth Cup Series event at the track, but it will be the seventh race of the year at a mile-and-a-half track.

While there isn’t an extensive history for Kentucky itself, we only need to look to the another races at the 1.5-mile ovals this year to have an idea of who to back this weekend. More than any other type of track on the schedule, there tends to be a strong correlation between how drivers perform from one 1.5-mile track to the next.

With that in mind, it should be no surprise that a few familiar names top the list of betting favorites this weekend. Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. lead my list of drivers to back, and they have combined to win 13 of the 18 races this year, including all six races at mile-and-a-half tracks.

2018 Quaker State 400 Odds, Picks and Predictions: Favorites and Bad Bets for the Quaker State 400

Favorites to Bet

Kevin Harvick (2/1)

He has been the most dominant performer at the mile-and-a-half ovals this year, winning three times and finishing third or better in five of the six races. Harvick has also led a series-best 600 laps in those starts, and that’s despite missing a majority of the Charlotte race because of a cut tire. His record at Kentucky isn’t as impressive, but he did lead 128 laps here in 2016. Based on the speed he has shown this year, especially at the 1.5-mile ovals, I don’t expect Harvick to slow down Saturday.

Kyle Busch (7/2)

Nobody has been more consistent at the 1.5-mile tracks this year than Busch. In six races, he leads all drivers with a 3.7 average finish, winning three times and leading the second-most laps. Busch has also been excellent at Kentucky throughout his career. He is a two-time winner at the track, and his 5.1 average finish and 549 laps led are both tops in the series. He has actually led more than 100 laps in four of the seven races at Kentucky, including last year’s race. Busch is the safest bet on the board this week.

Martin Truex Jr. (7/2)

Truex led 46 laps and finished in the top 10 at Kentucky in 2016, and last year, he dominated the field, leading a race-high 152 laps and sweeping all three stages. He still doesn’t have a win at a 1.5-mile track in 2018, but his five top-five finishes in the six races are tied for the most of any driver, and he does have three wins under his belt. Truex is pretty much a lock to be in contention for win No. 4 Saturday night and back-to-back wins at Kentucky.

Bad Bets

Clint Bowyer (15/1)

Don’t get me wrong. Bowyer is having an incredible season, and he already has a couple of wins under his belt. He has also been solid at the 1.5-mile tracks, compiling a 10.3 average finish in the six races this year. However, he has led just 21 laps in those six races, and in 451 career starts, Bowyer has managed just one win at a 1.5-mile oval, and that was a fuel mileage win. His numbers at Kentucky aren’t special either, and in seven starts, he has just one top-10 and an 18.9 average finish. Not to mention the fact that he has never led a lap at the track. He currently has the fifth-best odds to win of any driver this weekend, and his history at mile-and-a-half tracks just doesn’t justify those odds.

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