NASCAR betting: Aaron's 499 at Talladega preview

May 2, 2013 |
NASCAR betting: Aaron's 499 at Talladega preview
"The Big One" can burn your bets at Talladega in a matter of seconds.
Photo By - USA Today Sports
"The Big One" can burn your bets at Talladega in a matter of seconds.
Photo By - USA Today Sports
NASCAR betting at Talladega can be as simple as selecting a car that survives to see the last lap. The 2.66-mile Superspeedway is notorious for “The Big One”, a field-clearing wreck that can swallow up race favorites in a matter of seconds.

The oddsmakers have their favorites for this weekend’s Aaron's 499 at Talladega but in all honesty, the race is really a roll of the dice for NASCAR bettors. That means bigger value for anyone who can correctly pick the winner.

Favorite: Kyle Busch/Matt Kenseth (+1,000)

No other racetrack presents this much value for the overall favorites, which are basically a formality at Talladega. Busch had lady luck on his side last year, finishing third and second respectively in the two races at Talladega and won the Aaron’s 499 back in 2008. He’s had trouble his last two times out this season, finishing 38th and 24th after starting those races in the Top 8.

Kenseth is the most recent winner at Talladega, taking the checkered at the Good Sam Roadside Assistance 500 last fall. He was a beast in restrictor-plate races last year, winning two and finishing third in two others, and owns an average finish of 18.0 at Talladega. Crew chief Jason Ratcliff is still on the headset for the No. 20 team, for now, pending an appeal of engine penalties from two weeks ago.

Live dog: Kevin Harvick (+1,200)

Harvick is not among the favorites but is locked with eight other drivers priced at 12-1. At any other track, +1,200 would indicate an underdog. But this isn’t any other track. Harvick is coming off a win at Richmond last Saturday and knows how to survive Talladega, completing 98.54 percent of his total career laps there, including a win in 2010.

Long shot: Joey Logano (+3,000)

Logano may not have the experience at Talladega like some of his competition. But in a small sample size, the No. 22 Ford has shown some consistency at the Superspeedway, which is something even the most seasoned drivers struggle to do. In eight races, he’s placed inside the Top 10 four times, including a third and fifth-place showing, and has completed 99.87 percent of his total laps. Logano has finished inside the Top 5 in three of his last five races, placing third at Richmond last weekend.

Key stat: Richard Childress Racing owns the most Sprint Cup Series wins at Talladega with 12 overall. Hendrick Motorsports is a close second with 11.

Notable quotable:

“Someone described racing on the superspeedways of being a combination of a science project and the luck of a casino, and it’s exactly that way. You do everything in your power to take care of the science or technology side, do everything you can to build the fastest car you’ve got. But if you don’t have the luck to go with it, even if you don’t have any drama with getting the car touched – nothing happens to the car – if you’re just in the wrong spot at the wrong time at the end, it can take you out of whatever opportunity you had.” – Tony Stewart told SpeedTV about racing at Talladega.

Odds to win the Aaron’s 499 at Talladega (Courtesy of JustBet):

Kyle Busch 10-1
Matt Kenseth 10-1
Jimmie Johnson 12-1
Jeff Gordon 12-1
Kasey Kahne 12-1
Tony Stewart 12-1
Kevin Harvick 12-1
Clint Bowyer 12-1
Brad Keselowski 12-1
Dale Earnhardt Jr. 12-1
Carl Edwards 15-1
Greg Biffle 15-1
Jamie McMurray 20-1
Martin Truex Jr. 25-1
Joey Logano 30-1
Kurt Busch 30-1
Ryan Newman 35-1
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. 35-1
Danica Patrick 35-1
Juan Montoya 35-1
Michael Waltrip 40-1
Jeff Burton 40-1
Paul Menard 40-1
Aric Almirola 50-1
Marcos Ambrose 50-1
Regan Smith 75-1
Trevor Bayne 75-1
Elliott Sadler 75-1
David Ragan 100-1
Casey Mears 100-1
Bobby Labonte 100-1
Dave Blaney 100-1
David Gilliland 100-1
Field (Any Other Driver) 15-1

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