- Denny Hamlin is the favorite this week after yet another top-three finish at Richmond Raceway last week
- Joey Logano is on the hunt for his second win after a strong third-place result last week
- We’ve got you covered with all the odds and trends ahead of Sunday afternoon’s race at Talladega Superspeedway
NASCAR again races with a Sunday afternoon race after last week’s exciting Toyota Owners 400 with the running of the Geico 500 on Sunday, April 25th, 2021. Denny Hamlin is a +650 favorite to take home the checkered flag in the Geico 500 odds.
However, the 40-year-old faces very stiff competition in his attempt to break through this 2021 season. Past winner Ryan Blaney is a +1000 bet, while Joey Logano sports an intriguing +900 odds. Even Chase Elliott comes in with an enticing +1100 odds for the Sunday race.
NASCAR Geico 500 Odds
|Driver||Odds to Win at DraftKings||Odds to Finish Top Three||Odds to Finish Top 10|
|Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||+2000||+550||+130|
|Martin Truex Jr.||+2200||+600||+145|
Odds as of April 22nd
Denny Hamlin Tries to Break Through
NASCAR drivers run on a 2.66-mile paved track when the flag drops for Sunday afternoon’s race at 3:00 PM EST. That track has been good to Denny Hamlin, who won the Talladega race in his last trip to the superspeedway, along with a fourth-place finish last season. Hamlin finished second in last week’s Toyota Owners 400. Sometimes the most dominating car does not win, and Hamlin knows that well.
Most times the most dominant car doesn’t win.
Remember 2008? Denny Hamlin led 381 laps at Richmond and finished 24th. That same night Dale Earnhardt Jr and Kyle Busch tangled after Hamlin cut down a tire.
— SleeplessScotty33 (@ScottyStyles33) April 18, 2021
Hamlin has performed exceedingly well at Talladega. He has four top-five finishes in his last five races on the superspeedway culminating in last Fall’s triumph. The Joe Gibbs Racing driver led a total of 44 laps on the tri-oval last year.
Also, Hamlin will be starting from the pole position on Sunday afternoon thanks to NASCAR metrics. He has taken advantage of favorable starting positions this season, finishing fifth or better in seven of the previous eight races he has started among the first five rows. The driver has done everything but win this season.
Geico 500 Recent Winners
|Year||Race Winner||Pole Position||Most Laps Led|
|2020||Ryan Blaney – Team Penske||Martin Truex Jr. – Joe Gibbs Racing||Ryan Blaney – Team Penske|
|2019||Chase Elliott – Hendrick Motorsports||Austin Dillon – Richard Childress Racing||Chase Elliott – Hendrick Motorsports|
|2018||Joey Logano – Team Penske||Kevin Harvick – Stewart-Haas Racing||Joey Logano – Team Penske|
|2017||Ricky Stenhouse Jr. – Roush Fenway Racing||Kyle Busch – Joe Gibbs Racing||Ricky Stenhouse Jr. – Roush Fenway Racing|
Chase Elliott Keeps Trying to Find the Checkered Flag
Sports bettors should still be mindful of Chase Elliott in this weekend’s race. The Hendrick Motorsports driver won this Talladega race two years ago and led the most laps. Elliott is again listed in the top-five NASCAR Cup Series odds, but the 25-year-old has struggled mightily at times in the first nine races. He has just three top-five finishes and no wins in 2021. He is now the victim of one very unexpected stat.
Larson: Las Vegas
Chase Elliott is the only winless Hendrick motorsports driver.
— SleeplessScotty33 (@ScottyStyles33) April 18, 2021
Elliott was visibly angered after last week’s race at Richmond where he finished 12th after starting third. He fell to as low as 17th after Stage 1 and could never quite stay in the top ten. The Hendrick Motorsports driver traditionally fares better at Talladega. Elliott crashed out of the Spring race but finished fifth in the Fall version after leading 41 laps. There is something about the tri-oval that excites the No. 9 Chevy driver, and a better starting position should mean more fortuitous results this time around.
Joey Logano Poised to Keep Things Rolling at Talladega?
The Team Penske driver won four weeks ago on the Bristol dirt track and since then has been on a roll. Logano finished sixth at Martinsville after being on the pole. Then at Richmond, Logano almost caught Denny Hamlin for second place at the end of the race, settling for a top-three finish. The Team Penske driver led 49 laps and now is third in the Cup Series standings. Logano will start in the front row with Hamlin on Sunday afternoon.
Denny Hamlin to start on the pole for Sunday's Cup Series race at Talladega. Joey Logano starts second, followed by Martin Truex Jr., William Byron and Alex Bowman. pic.twitter.com/InOot2geW3
— Jordan Bianchi (@Jordan_Bianchi) April 21, 2021
When Logano won in 2018, he qualified ninth and managed to force his way to a win. Most people forget that Logano qualified in the top ten in the previous two Spring races in 2019 and 2020. Only some grip and lift issues befell him in those two races.
The Fall race saw Logano right at or near the front, but an unfortunate crash at lap 188 forced multiple overtimes and an end to his day. The Team Penske driver has the driving acumen to potentially even win, but taking a top-three finish is the safer bet. Logano has great value in the Geico 500 odds to finish top three at +275.
The Picks: Denny Hamlin to win (+650); Joey Logano to finish Top Three (+275)
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