2017 Daytona 500 PicksJosh Bailey
NASCAR kicks off another great season on Feb. 26th with the Daytona 500. Back in the driver’s seat is the ever-popular Dale Earnhardt Jr. Is Dal Jr. the favorite to take home the checkered flag at Daytona? Which driver is the smart play? Who offers the most value to win the Daytona 500? Finally, is there a long shot in the field worth considering?
2017 Daytona 500 Picks
When: Sunday, February 26, 2017
Start Time: 2:00 PM ET
Where: Daytona Beach, Florida
Stadium: Daytona International Speedway
Watch: FOX Sports
Stream: Fox Sports Go
The Odds-On Favorite Pick To Win The Daytona 500: Dale Earnhardt Jr. 5/1
Dale Jr. has 1 win and 2 Top 10 finishes in the last 4 races at Daytona. That’s not terrible. What’s more impressive, and the reason he’s the favorite, is because he’s won at Daytona 4 times. That’s the most from any race driver suiting up on Feb. 26. Could Dale Jr. take home the top prize again at Daytona? Sure, he could. But the odds of 5 to 1 are just bad. NASCAR is like golf. It’s difficult to win any event. I won’t back a driver at anything less than double-digit odds.
The Smart Bet To Win The Daytona 500: Jimmie Johnson 10/1
By winning his seventh overall NASCAR Championship in 2016, Jimmie Johnson tied Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt for the most titles ever. He could break the tie this season. It’s amazing what Johnson has done. I think he steps it up at Daytona this weekend even though he’s never been great over the track. In his last 4 races at Daytona, JJ only has 2 Top 10 finishes. He has no wins. His average finish over the track is a less than stellar 14.50 in the last 4.
That’s not great. But, this is Jimmie Johnson. He could pull the rabbit out of the hat on Feb. 26 as a 10 to 1 smart play.
The Value Bet To Win The Daytona 500: Denny Hamlin 12/1
Hamlin presents more value than JJ at 12 to 1 as opposed to 10 to 1. There are a lot of reasons to like Hamlin to grab the checkered flag this Sunday. In his last 4 races at Daytona, Hamlin has a win. He also has 3 Top 10 finishes. His average finish in his last 4 at Daytona is a terrific 6.45. He could win this. At 12 to 1 odds, he’s worth a long look.
The Long Shot Bet To Win The Daytona 500: Ryan Newman 50/1
You can’t expect the world at 50 to 1 odds. I’m not. I think Newman’s an overlay at 50 to 1. Yes, he hasn’t been great at Daytona International Speedway since he won the Daytona 500 in 2008. I get that. But, Newman has a Top 10 finish, eighth place, in 1 of his last 4 races at Daytona. Newman also starts his fourth year with Richard Childress Racing. This could be the year where driver and team come together big time. At 50 to 1, I think he’s worth a few bucks.
Odds To Win 2017 Daytona 500
|Dale Earnhardt Jr.||5/1|
|Martin Truex Jr.||10/1|