While it never hurts to be very familiar with NASCAR betting and the sport in general, sometimes even the experts have a hard time predicting the winners of every race. That’s when the term ‘ignorance is bliss’ can really pay off when profiting on auto racing wagering.
Of course you’re not going to have long term success just picking a winning driver out of a hat each week, there are certain strategies to follow that will make you a better NASCAR bettor over time.
Not Having a Favorite Driver
It may sound weird but not following NASCAR on a regular basis could be one of the best assets in becoming a more successful auto racing bettors. Many people fall into a trap wagering with their heart and not their head.
It can definitely be fun and entertaining to bet on a favorite driver (or golfer, or team) but if you’re going to be wagering for profit it’s best not to be personally invested one way or the other.
Know the Track
While the car and the driver are obviously important aspects of a NASCAR race, it could be argued that the track is the most important feature to factor into your betting strategy. Not all courses are created equal in auto racing.
To be more specific, Michigan International Speedway is a 2.0 mile course, while Martinsville is a ½ mile track. That would be like playing a football game in Pittsburgh on a 100-yard field, but then Green Bay being just 60 yards. Some teams are built for success on one compared to the other.
There’s also a difference in track shapes such as oval, tri-oval, quad-oval, and the jagged road courses. There are also flat tracks, steep tracks, and other varying layouts that may not seem to make a difference but they definitely do.
The reason it’s important to understand track type is because some driver’s just fare better in different racing styles. A guy can win five straight restrictor plate races, but to bet on him to win a sixth straight but this time on a short track is probably a wasted wager. Chase Elliott for example has an average finish in the top 3 at Watkins Glen (restrictor plate) but 14th at Bristol (short track).
If a driver has fared well a majority of times at a specific track,the odds are that it will continue outside of a wreck or some sort of mechanical failure. Whether it be familiarity, being their ‘home track’ or other factors some drivers just perform better in certain places – much like golfers have their favorite courses.
NASCAR Not as Top Heavy Anymore
One thing every sport strives for is parity, so that you don’t alienate a certain group of fans. For many years in NASCAR it seemed like Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, or Kyle Busch were winning every race. Now a new crop of young drivers have developed and technology has made it so that it’s not just the richest racing teams winning week in and week out.
There were 10 different winners in the first 10 races of the 2022 season which is a glorious thing. This is why it’s more important than ever to understand track type and driver history.
Play the Odds
Even knowing every statistic possible for a certain driver and track many times it is still a crapshoot on who will come out on top each week. That is why it’s important to play the odds in your wagers. If Chase Elliott at +300 and Joey Logano at +1200 have similar track histories, then Logano would be the better player even though Elliott likely has a better chance of winning. You only need one Logano win over a four race span to make up for four straight Elliott wins if that makes sense.
It also never hurts to play multiple drivers every week sprinkling in some favorites and longer odds. One driver cashing in at +400 or higher at minimum breaks even four other bets of the same value.