Brief NASCAR History
On March 8, 1936, many drivers brought their cars to Daytona Beach, Florida, to have a race to determine the best driver and the fastest cars. They quickly found that the sand of Daytona Beach would slow the heavier cars, but lighter cars (Fords) drove more smoothly through the beach sand and ended up taking the top six spots in the race. By 1947, William France, Sr. saw the potential of auto racing and started a season series for stock car racing. As the governing body met to name the series, they ended up with the “National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing,” more commonly known as NASCAR. The following year, a more formal series started by France, Sr., was broken out into divisions. Over the next 10 years, stock car racing went through many modifications as the popularity and potential continued to grow.
Today’s divisions include the Cup Series Xfinity Series for developing younger drivers to prepare them for the Cup Series and the Camping World Truck Series.
Introduction to NASCAR Betting
NASCAR betting may seem easier as it is simply picking a winner. As in team sports, where you pick between two teams, you have basically a 50/50 shot at winning your bet. There are generally 43 drivers (sometimes fewer) in a race in NASCAR, making the odds scenario different as there are 43 potential winners. However, the favorite can vary each week depending on the driver and how well they typically finish on that track.
It’s no secret NASCAR has become extremely popular in recent years, and not just because access has grown. More jurisdictions have legalized gambling, and wagering on auto racing can be so lucrative.
You might pay -300 on a big moneyline favorite to win in other sports such as football or basketball, but lowest odds we often see in NASCAR are in the +250 range.
What the NASCAR spreads mean is that, while wagering on a heavy favorite in major sports may take $300 to win $100 (-300), in auto racing, that $100 wager would net a profit of $250 (+250). That doesn’t mean that betting on NASCAR is easy by any means, but there are ways of improving your chances of winning.
How to Bet on NASCAR
The two biggest areas of knowledge in NASCAR betting are trends and locations. NASCAR races are very unpredictable as any driver has the potential to win every week based on strategies, crashes, weather, etc., but if teams have had their cars set up correctly and the drivers have done their jobs, the winning and losing trends will typically continue.
Tracks are the most important things to consider when betting on auto racing. Certain drivers fare better on tracks than others, based on their racing styles and experience. Many other factors come into play, such as if the track is close to home, whether the driver races better on concrete or asphalt, but usually, the driver has success because of the course type.
Some NASCAR Betting Strategies
The two biggest resources to use in NASCAR betting are trends and location. Obviously, anything can happen in a given race, but if teams have their cars dialed in and faring well in recent events, that run of success generally continues.
Location is the most important thing to consider for betting on auto racing, as certain drivers just finish better at specific tracks.
Perhaps that’s their hometown racecourse, maybe it’s the weather or how the concrete/asphalt reacts with the tires. Usually, it’s the course type.
Course Type Strategies
NASCAR drivers have preferences in the types of courses they prefer to race on, just as baseball players may perform better in a certain ballpark. Tracks vary in shape, length, and type, including:
- Short Tracks:These are usually a mile or less and require power, skill, and a more aggressive driving style to perform well.
- Intermediate:These tracks are typically 1.5 miles and are most common. Many drivers feel most comfortable in racing these speedways with good passing and competition.
- Superspeedways:These tracks are longer, wider, and faster. These races require much more strategy regarding fuel efficiency, tire wear, and pit-stop timing. These drivers will race at top speeds for long periods with an added level of risk.
- Road Courses:These tracks are typically more winding, slower, and require a different skill-set with driving the cars as there are a lot of turns (both left and right), varying levels in the track elevations, etc.
Some drivers are great on whatever track they race on. Dale Earnhardt, Sr., Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson are a few of the sport’s legends that excelled on all courses.
Overview To Betting On NASCAR
Most of the time, there are two competing teams, which is why you’ll have just as much luck flipping a coin determining a winner as you would pouring over statistics and trends. In NASCAR races though, there are usually 43 cars competing (sometimes fewer), which makes selecting the eventual winner a harder proposition.
Your odds aren’t 42-1 in every NASCAR race, because certain drivers are just better and the top-notch teams have way more resources than some of the lesser outfits. With wrecks, equipment failure and other variables, there’s still plenty of chances for a huge underdog to win any given race.
Hedging Between Young and Old
There’s definitely something to say about experience on the NASCAR circuit, as some drivers have 30, 40 or more starts on a specific track over their careers. There aren’t going to be a whole lot of things that Denny Hamlin or Kevin Harvick haven’t seen in any given race.
At the same time, the 40+-year-old Hamlin and mid 20’s Chase Elliott both had four top-10 finishes at Daytona, dating to February, 2019.
Basically, some strategies can be built in NASCAR betting. When they hit, it can be very lucrative.