After a long NASCAR bye-week, the GEICO 500 will be held this weekend at the beloved Talladega Superspeedway. When it comes to sports betting, NASCAR can be a tough nut to crack and unfortunately, a restrictor plate race at Talladega is notoriously unpredictable. That being said, figuring out the smartest place to put your money can make the race much more exciting. With the Vegas odds released, let’s take a look at what drivers stand the best chance to earn you some extra cash.

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Vegas Odds

  1. Joey Logano: 8/1
  2. Brad Keselowski: 8/1
  3. Kevin Harvick: 10/1
  4. Clint Bowyer: 10/1
  5. Denny Hamlin: 10/1
  6. Kyle Busch: 10/1
  7. Aric Almirola: 14/1
  8. Ryan Blaney: 14/1
  9. Chase Elliott: 14/1
  10. Ricky Stenhouse Jr: 18/1
  11. Kurt Busch: 18/1
  12. Martin Truex Jr: 18/1

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Average Restrictor Finishes

  1. Ricky Stenhouse Jr: 14.96
  2. Clint Bowyer: 15.89
  3. Kevin Harvick: 16.50
  4. Kurt Busch: 16.68
  5. Joey Logano: 17.05
  6. Austin Dillon: 17.17
  7. Denny Hamlin: 17.30
  8. Bubba Wallace: 17.33
  9. Jimmie Johnson: 17.55
  10. Ty Dillon: 18.55
  11. Aric Almirola: 18.70
  12. Brad Keselowski: 19.08



Safest Pick: Joey Logano

  • Talladega Odds: 8/1
  • Restrictor Plate Average Finish: 17.05
  • Season Top-10 Finishes: 6

It may not be the most exciting pick but simply put, it’s the safest pick for a reason. 2018 NASCAR Champion Joey Logano already has a win this year as well as six top-10 finishes. Based on Team Penske’s performance this early in the season, it’s hard to imagine Logano not earning more wins this year. Thankfully for Logano, this weekend is at a track he has already found victory lane three times. The only driver to earn more wins at Talladega is his teammate Brad Keselowski, further proof Penske knows what they are doing at this restrictor plate track. If you’re looking for the best chance to earn some money this weekend, put your faith in Team Penske and more specifically, Joey Logano.


Hedging Your Bet: Brad Keselowski

  • Talladega Odds: 8/1
  • Restrictor Plate Average Finish: 19.08
  • Season Top-10 Finishes: 5

Brad Keselowski is one of only 5 drivers to get a win this season and more impressively, one of only 3 drivers to already earn multiple wins this season. If his own ability to get a win this year – as well as Team Penske – isn’t enough to place your money’s confidence in Keselowski this weekend, he has won 5 times at Talladega, the most of any current driver. Obviously, the payout at 8/1 odds isn’t much to write home about but there’s a reason Vegas favors these Penske drivers so much at this track. Either of these drivers clearly have a great chance of winning this race.


Big Risk, Bigger Reward: Ty Dillon

  • Talladega Odds: 80/1
  • Restrictor Plate Average Finish: 18.55
  • Season Top-10 Finishes: 1

Plenty of NASCAR fans believe restrictor plate tracks require the least amount of skill and is much more about being in the right place at the right time. This is where Ty Dillon can truly shine. Ty Dillon only has one top-10 finish this season which was at Daytona, another restrictor plate track. Not only does he have the 9th highest average finishes at restrictor plate tracks with 18.55 but more importantly, the second-highest average finishes at Talladega with 13.50. In nearly any other race I would never recommend betting on Ty Dillon but with 80/1 odds at his best track; this pick is worth of a few dollars for a possible huge payout.


Dog Pick: Austin Dillon

  • Talladega Odds: 40/1
  • Restrictor Plate Average Finish: 17.17
  • Season Top-10 Finishes: 2

Austin Dillon had a rough start to the 2019 NASCAR season. As I mentioned in a previous article however, I believe Austin Dillon is actually a good driver on a bad team. Since his team has stopped making poor mistakes, he has progressively gotten better over the past 5 races, earning two solid top-10 finishes. I think it’s only a matter of time that Austin Dillon earns a win this year and a restrictor plate this weekend could be the perfect opportunity. AD is ranked 6th for average finishes at restrictor plates, with three top-5’s and a win. In 2016, he finished 3rd and 9th at both Talladega races, proving he knows what he’s doing at a restrictor plate track. At 40/1 odds, Austin Dillon could prove to be a big payoff underdog pick this weekend.


Inflated Odds: Kyle Busch

  • Talladega Odds: 10/1
  • Restrictor Plate Average Finish: 19.64
  • Season Top-10 Finishes: 9

When it comes to NASCAR, betting against Kyle Busch is usually a bad idea. That being said, this weekend at Talladega may be one of the few times I actually recommend it. It’s almost hard to imagine Kyle Busch not competing for a win, considering he has finished in the top-10 of every single race this season and has already earned 3 wins. Regardless, he is ranked 15th for average finishes at restrictor plate tracks and only has a 20.70 average finish at Talladega. Kyle Busch is arguably one of the most talented NASCAR drivers but when it comes to his worst style of racing at his worst track by performance, 10/1 odds seem like a bad bet.


Worst Pick: Martin Truex Jr.

  • Talladega Odds: 18/1
  • Restrictor Plate Average Finish: 21.73
  • Season Top-10 Finishes: 6

I’m not sure if it’s because he finally got his first short track win at Richmond this year but Martin Truex’s odds at Talladega this weekend seems a bit high. Sure, Truex already has six top-10 finishes in his first year with Joe Gibbs Racing but he has never won a race at a restrictor plate track. In fact, out of his 28 races at Talladega, his average finish for this track is 21.32. Which is his second worst performing track, only better than the other restrictor plate track, Daytona. Martin Truex Jr. has proven his glory days are not behind him and surely has plenty of hype after his recent win but he does not deserve the same odds as Kurt Busch and Ricky Stenhouse Jr, two good drivers at Talladega. I would steer clear of this restrictor-winless driver for betting at Talladega.

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