NASCAR Sprint Cup SeriesSunday, March 17 – 1:00 p.m. EDT
Food City 500
Bristol Motor Speedway - Bristol, TN
The NASCAR circuit heads to Bristol for the first short-track race of the season on Sunday. Bristol Motor Speedway is a .533-mile, oval track with a seating capacity of more than 160,000 people. The bankings measure a hefty 36° on turns, and there is 16° banking on the straightaways, which are exactly 650 feet (0.12 miles).
Odds to Win Race(For the latest Odds, connect to Sportsbook.com)
|Dale Earnhardt Jr.||12-to-1|
|Martin Truex Jr.||25-to-1|
|Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||60-to-1|
|FIELD (Any other driver)||100-to-1|
Drivers to WatchJeff Gordon (12/1) - You can never count Gordon out when it comes to short-track racing, especially at Bristol where he's taken home five checkered flags, 16 top-5's and has an average finish of 11.9 in 40 starts. These big numbers include 3rd-place finishes in two of his past three starts at this track. If you are only betting one driver this weekend, place that wager on Gordon.
Brad Keselowski (7/1) - He has won two of the past three races at Bristol, which came from great starting spots of eighth and fifth. He also started second at this track last fall, but finished a disappointing 30th. So far this season, Keselowski has been outstanding, finishing fourth at both Daytona and Phoenix before coming in third from the pole position at Las Vegas last week. His odds are pretty low, but for all the chalk that this race has to offer, the defending champ Keselowski has as much value as any of the favorites.
Matt Kenseth (12/1) - Last week's winner in Las Vegas also finished 7th in the prior week at Phoenix. Kenseth has also had great success at Bristol with 17 top-10's in 26 starts (65.4%) including 10 top-5's and a pair of victories in 2005 and 2006. Last August's disappointing 25th-place showing ended a string of six straight top-10's where he placed 10th, 5th, 10th, 4th, 6th and runner-up in last year's Food City 500. At 12-to-1, Kenseth is worthy of a small wager.
Brian Vickers (30/1) - The best darkhorse candidate for Sunday has to be Vickers, who will be driving Mark Martin's car. Vickers led for 125 laps in last year's Food City 500 and finished in fifth place. Then he did even better in the August race at Bristol with a 4th-place showing. And in his most recent short-track start at Martinsville last October, Vickers raced to an 8th-place finish at the Tums Fast Relief 500 on the .526-mile track. His 30-to-1 odds are quite favorable and warrant a one-unit wager.
Kurt Busch (75/1) - As longshots go, Busch has some serious value at 75-to-1. After all, he's won five times at Bristol in his career and placed in the top-10 in 13 of his 24 starts, leading for 840 laps at this track. And although his most recent Bristol victory came way back in 2006, four of his top-10's occurred in his past seven starts, including a 3rd-place finish in the 2010 spring race. Busch has also shown an improvement in each race this season, finishing 28th in Daytona, 27th at Phoenix and 20th last week in Las Vegas.