Best Bets for Pocono      


The Cup Series will travel to the Pocono Mountains this weekend to compete at the “Tricky Triangle.” There have been 12 drivers in Victory Lane this year, so the seats in the 2024 Cup Series Playoffs are quickly being filled. There are a lot of good drivers who have not won a race yet this season and a trip to Pocono could be the track where we seen the 13th winner in the Cup Series. It will be fun to see how it all plays out. The Great American Gateway 400 can be seen Sunday at 2:30 p.m. ET on USA Network.

I really thought we had a winner last week with Shane van Gisbergen, Christopher Bell and Tyler Reddick. SVG had the fastest car in Stage 1 and it looked like he was going to dominate the race until Chase Briscoe put SVG into the wall. Bell had fresh tires at the end of the race and he was quickly making his way to the front and then he was taken out when Martin Truex Jr. spun in front of Bell. Our last chance was with the No. 45 car. He was running down Alex Bowman for the lead as time expired, but Reddick over-drove the car and got into the wall. Our luck was not good at Chicago. Hopefully it turns around at Pocono.



* The odds are from DraftKings Sportsbook. The odds could change between the time of this article and the time you place your bet.



I know many of you will look below at my betting card and wonder why we should even waste our time betting to win so little money. I bet on NASCAR for fun. My goal each week is not to hit the jackpot and win a lot of money. I just like to watch the race, know I have some skin in the game and return a profit each week. If that is your goal too, use my picks below.

If your strategy is to have a big return on your investment each week, do not use my picks. The two best drivers in this race are Denny Hamlin and Kyle Larson. The stats prove that and the sportsbooks know it too. In order to have a large return, you need to bet all of your bankroll on Hamlin and Larson to win or fade them and take a chance with a driver with longer odds reaching Victory Lane. Here is how I would spread out my bets if I were to take a chance with drivers with longer odds and fade Hamlin and Larson…



KYLE LARSON (+500): We do not know much about the race this weekend since Pocono is such a unique track, but it is almost a lock that the No. 5 car will show up with speed. Larson has the best average green flag speed on the large intermediate tracks this year and he has the best average green flag speed in the two races at Pocono in the Gen-7 car. Larson had a great chance to win this race last year until Denny Hamlin put the No. 5 car into the wall. I will bet that Larson gets his revenge with a win Sunday at the Tricky Triangle.

CHRISTOPHER BELL (+650): Bell has been too good lately to fade. I know that most of his success has come at the shorter tracks, but No. 20 car has the fourth-fastest green flag speed on the large intermediate tracks this year. The races at Pocono often turn into fuel-strategy races and that puts the race in the hands of the crew chief. Adam Stevens has been hitting on all cylinders with the way he has been calling races over the last two months. This bet is as much on Stevens as it is on Bell Sunday.

MARTIN TRUEX JR. (+800): It is hard to believe that Truex has not won a race this year. The No. 19 team has a clear path to the playoffs through points, but I am sure Truex would like to win a race to take away any doubt that his team may have. Truex has two wins at Pocono on his resume and he finished third in this race last year. The No. 19 car should run up front Sunday with a good chance to win at Pocono.

WILLIAM BYRON (+850): Byron had a fast car at Pocono last year. He won the pole, led the most laps, but poor pit strategy caused him to finish 14th. Byron has never won at Pocono, but he has the third-best Driver Ranking and the second-best average running position in the Gen-7 car at the track. Byron has the speed and the talent to win Sunday. He just needs some better luck.

BRAD KESELOWSKI (+160): I really like Keselowski as a long-shot bet this week. He has the best driver rating in the races using the intermediate aero package. That has a lot to do with his win at Darlington and his second-place finishes at Texas and Charlotte. The No. 6 team found some speed at the larger tracks and Keselowski has a history of running well at Pocono when he has a fast car. I also like his chances if the race Sunday comes down to pit strategy. Crew Chief Matt McCall has proved that he is not afraid to take a chance with pit strategy to get Keselowski the track position he needs to win a race.


** I will not be posting updated Best Bets this weekend, but you can ask me on Twitter or in the Member’s Forum s there are any other drivers I like after qualifying.


Good luck Sunday!

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