Martin Truex Jr. is favored at PointsBet SportsBook to win Sunday’s Cup race at Martinsville Speedway (2 p.m. ET, NBC and Peacock). It is the seventh time this season he has been a favorite to win a Cup race.
Truex was also favored at Martinsville this spring with odds of +525 and Richmond Raceway in September with a line of +440. Those are two of Truex’s four wins this season, which is part of the reason that his odds were lowered +425 for the Sunday’s Xfinity 500. Truex has three Martinsville wins in his last four starts.
One way to view American odds is to move the decimal point two positions to the left. That will let a bettor know what they will make on a $1 bet. The return on investment for +425 odds is $4.25. For bettors more comfortable with fractional odds, a line of +300 is the same as 3/1.
Denny Hamlin is ranked second this week with a line of +625. Hamlin has five wins on this bullring with the most recent coming in spring 2015. Last year, he failed to crack the top 10 in two Martinsville races, but rebounded to fifth this spring.
Larson has only two top fives in 13 Martinsville starts, but for most bettors his stats reset this year with his move into the No. 5. Larson finished fifth in the spring Martinsville race. This is the longest line for Larson on an unrestricted oval since he was also posted at +700 for the fall Richmond race.
Elliott is the defending winner of this race last year. He finished second this spring behind Truex. Sitting second in the driver championship standings with a 34-point advantage to the cutline, Elliott needs to insure that he has a solid finish. He is ranked second in regard to his championship odds with a line of +300 to Larson’s +140 .
After sustaining crash damage and failing to finish last week’s race at Kansas Speedway, Ryan Blaney is embroiled in a tight battle for fourth in the driver standings. Blaney finished second in both Martinsville races last year, but failed to crack the top 10 this spring. He is ranked fifth with a line of +725.
Kyle Busch is the only other driver with odds lower than 10/1. From 2015-18, Martinsville was one of Busch’s best tracks with two wins and an eight-race streak of top fives. In the last four races, his best result was a ninth in last year’s Xfinity 500.
Brad Keselowski is another driver fighting to be part of the Championship 4 at Phoenix Raceway. He challenged for the lead in each of the last two races this season and has a strong recent record at Martinsville. Before sustaining crash damage this spring, Keselowski had two wins, nine top fives, and a ninth in his previous 10 Martinsville starts. At +1000, he is ranked seventh along with teammate Joey Logano.
One of this week’s top dark horses could be Matt DiBenedetto. He has not yet earned a Martinsville top five in 13 starts, but he was in the top 10 in both races last year and was 12th this spring. If he can pull off the Cinderella win on the Wood Brothers’ home track, that will be worth +12500.
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Dan Beaver handicaps NASCAR races for NBC Sports Edge.