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NASCAR betting: Bojangles' Southern 500 preview

Nicknamed "Too Tough To Tame," Darlington Raceway always provides a fast and exciting race on Mother’s Day weekend. The 1.37-mile oval is the original superspeedway and has over a 60-year racing history.

Here's our Sprint Cup Series preview and odds for Saturday's race:

Favorite: Kyle Busch +500

Busch was the youngest driver to ever win at Darlington in 2008 (23 years, 8 days). He ranks fourth out of 49 drivers over the past eight seasons with an average place of 10, has two top-fives to his credit and four top-10 finishes.

Live dog: Jeff Gordon +1,200

Gordon's seven wins at this track is the most among active drivers and he ranks first out of 49 drivers with an average place of 8.3. The veteran also boasts 18 top-fives and 21-top 10s at Darlington.

Long shot: Regan Smith +15,000

Smith is fresh off a Nationwide win at Talladega and now gets to race at his self-proclaimed “favorite track.” Smith has a win at Darlington to his credit (2011) and finished 14th in the Sprint Cup event last season. Smith is the only driver who is entered in this race that scored his first career Sprint Cup victory at the track.

Key stat:

The race winner at Darlington has started from the pole 19 times, but no driver has won a race from the starting position since Dale Jarrett did it in 1997.

Notable quotable:

“You can’t really pass there. It’s so difficult. So you run your laps until you get to a pit stop and try to get your guys to have a good stop for you so you can jump a couple of guys. Pit stops become really important there, and track position and trying to stay up front.” – Kyle Busch on racing Darlington.

Odds to win the Bojangles’ Southern 500 courtesy of Bet365:


Kyle Busch +550
Jimmie Johnson +700
Matt Kenseth +750
Denny Hamlin +800
Kasey Kahne +900
Carl Edwards +1,000
Brad Keselowski +1,100
Greg Biffle +1,200
Martin Truex Jr. +1,200
Jeff Gordon +1,200
Tony Stewart +1,400
Kevin Harvick +1,600
Clint Bowyer +1,600
Dale Earnhardt Jr. +1,800
Joey Logano +2,200
Mark Martin +3,300
Ricky Stenhouse +3,300
Ryan Newman +3,500
Jamie McMurray +4,000
Kurt Busch +4,000
Marcos Ambrose +5,000
Paul Menard +5,000
Juan Montoya +5,000
Jeff Burton +6,000
Aric Almirola +10,000
Regan Smith +15,000
Danica Patrick +25,000
Bobby Labonte +30,000
David Ragan +35,000
Casey Mears +40,000
Scott Speed +50,000
David Reutimann +50,000
David Stremme +75,000
JJ Yeley +75,000
Travis Kvapil +75,000
David Gilliland +75,000
Landon Cassill +75,000
Josh Wise +100,000
Joe Nemechek +100,000
Brian Keselowski +100,000
Timmy Hill +100,000
Mike Bliss +100,000
Michael McDowell +100,000
Dave Blaney +100,000

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