The seventh race of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season gets underway this Sunday in Virginia with 400 laps around the 0.75-mile oval at Richmond Raceway. Therefore, let’s hit on some of our expert NASCAR picks this week and go over a few options for the outright market, positional selections and best NASCAR bets and predictions for the Toyota Owners 400 on Sunday, April 3.
Expert NASCAR Picks & Predictions: Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond
NASCAR Betting Odds This Week
Times are changing, or at least, they’re adjusting. Following victories by Chase Briscoe, William Byron, and Ross Chastain in three-straight victories, books are adjusting their baseline odds. At DraftKings Sportsbook, Chase Elliott sits atop the outright board at +850, meanwhile, Elliott is the favorite at BetMGM at +800. The prohibitive favorite opening above +500, at a non-drafting oval or road course, is territory the NASCAR betting scene hasn’t witnessed for a while.
Besides the outright opening with higher odds, more drivers are situated near the top as well. Currently, 14 drivers have odds, on BetMGM and DraftKings Sportsbook, of 20/1 or lower. The simple fact is, compared to last year, more drivers have become “live” in the sense of possessing winning potential.
This is especially true as NASCAR races at Richmond this Sunday. Last year, in the era of the high horsepower/ low downforce package, it felt like only a handful of drivers could be counted on as legitimate winners. Unless a driver’s owner was Joe Gibbs, Rick Hendrick, or Roger Penske; any other driver felt like they needed a series of unforeseen circumstances to unfold for any chance at a win. Now, Trackhouse Racing has entered the fold as a weekly threat, and Stewart-Haas has rebounded with Chase Briscoe as its new potential forerunner. This doesn’t even include Tyler Reddick who continues to run strong week-in and week-out for Richard Childress.
Best NASCAR Pick To Win: Joey Logano (+1000)
With all of that said about the mid-tier cars and teams, it’s worth noting that Penske is producing fast cars week after week. Joey Logano has failed to have a car that ranked worse than 11th in green-flag speed in any race this year, including the second-fastest car back at the Los Angeles Coliseum. Since leaving Daytona, Ryan Blaney has ranked fourth, fourth, second, first, and fifth in green-flag speed rankings. Meanwhile, rookie Austin Cindric has been a bit more haphazard as his car has either been top 10 or ranked 22nd or worse.
Noting Logano’s speed, he makes sense as a driver who should be able to capitalize on a seemingly strong Richmond history of late, in the Gen-Six car, and compete for a victory on Sunday. If last year’s vehicle was comparable to the Gen-Seven car, then betters should double down on the likes of Martin Truex Jr., Denny Hamlin, and Kyle Busch to show up and give Joe Gibbs his fourth victory in six Richmond races. However, last year’s results have not carried over into 2022 for Joe Gibbs Racing thus far. Hamlin has yet to register a top 10 finish, and Truex has five top-15 finishes but has led just 17 laps in total through six races.
In terms of speed, the trio of Hamlin, Blaney, and Truex are averaging green flag speed rankings in the teens while Blaney and Logano are both sitting around sixth, placing them atop the speed charts of all active drivers. With this speed in mind, betters should look at Logano’s aforementioned recent history at Richmond and see his four top-five finishes in his past five starts. Blaney’s recent past at Richmond is not nearly as encouraging with his best finishes coming last year with results of 11th and 10th. However, in this year’s closest corollary to Richmond so far (Phoenix), Blaney led the most laps (143), held the best average running position in the field (4.5), and ended his day in fourth.
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Groups, NASCAR Picks & Parlays, Best Bets
The following is an interesting list of group picks, positional selections, best NASCAR bets and predictions currently offered by BetMGM for Sunday’s race:
- Daniel Suarez, top-three finish +900
- Chase Briscoe, top 10 finish -190
- Austin Dillon and Tyler Reddick both to finish in the top 10, +180
- William Byron and Tyler Reddick both to finish in the top five, +525
- Joey Logano to finish in the top three, Chase Elliott to finish in the top five, and Austin Dillon to finish in the top 10, +2000
- Featured Matchup: Joey Logano -120 over Denny Hamlin
- Race Matchup: Austin Cindric -100 over Erik Jones
- Top Ford Car: Joey Logano +260
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