- Kevin Harvick has registered wins in two of the last four races
- Harvick won eight times in 2018 but hadn’t won a single race in 2019 before this stretch
- Kyle Busch has finished in the Top 10 in all but three races this season
It’s been an interesting season for Kevin Harvick. After failing to pick up a win in any of his first 20 starts this season, he has now won two of the last four Monster Energy Cup races. His NASCAR Championship odds have shortened from +600 to +400 as a result.
Is Harvick a good bet to win it all at this point?
Odds to Win 2019 Monster Energy Cup Championship
|Driver||Points Standings||Championship Odds at MyBookie*|
|Kyle Busch||892 (1st)||+300|
|Kevin Harvick||822 (3rd)||+400|
|Martin Truex Jr.||805 (5th)||+400|
|Brad Keselowski||754 (6th)||+800|
|Joey Logano||872 (2nd)||+800|
*Odds taken 08/15/19.
Harvick Finally Gets The Wins
What was so odd about Harvick’s slow start to the 2019 campaign is that it followed a highly successful 2018. He registered eight wins last year and many felt he’d approach that number once again in 2019. However, he didn’t get to wave the checkered flag until four weeks ago.
Harvick finally broke through at New Hampshire, starting 14th but ending up as the race winner. Then he also won last week at Michigan, starting second and eventually winning even though he only led for 22 laps. The wins propel him into the conversation for the Monster Energy Cup as the rest of his season has been strong.
Harvick Has Had A Good Year
Although much has been made about the fact that it took Harvick so long to earn a win, the fact of the matter is that he’s had a strong campaign otherwise. He’s now finished in the top 7 in four straight weeks and has finished in the top 19 in 15 of his starts this season.
It’s also worth noting that, while he only has two wins, he’s had a number of other close calls. He placed fourth in Atlanta, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Richmond and Dover. It’s not as if he was far off the pace and then finally got on track. He’s been close all year and just finally sealed the deal.
There Is Downside Risk
As we’ve seen with many of the top drivers in contention, there’s downside risk with Harvick, too. Martin Truex Jr. had a stretch where he finished 10th or worse in six of nine races, Joey Logano has finished 13th or worse in five of eight, and Harvick finished 10th or worse in seven of 11.
Right now, Harvick is back on track and he’s hot, but will he be able to keep this up?
Kyle Busch Is The Best Bet
I still have a hard time betting any other driver than Busch to win it all. He’s been the most consistent driver all year long and the payout on the other drivers is not significantly better. If Harvick was at +800 or +1000, I’d consider him. It’s not that he’s that far off but Busch has been a cut above.
Even in a slump where Busch hasn’t won in nine straight races, he’s placed in the Top 9 six times. His outliers aren’t that bad either as the three misses were 11th, 14th and 22nd. His worst two finishes on the year are a 22nd and a 30th; outside of that, he’s been in the Top 10 every other week saved for the 11th and 14th.
Could things change? Of course. As of now, though, he’s the best bet as he’s been the best driver all season long.
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