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AAA Texas 500 Betting News and Notes

AAA Texas 500 Betting News and Notes 1 month 1 week ago #459180

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Texas - Driver Tale of the Tape

1 - Martin Truex Jr (No. 78 Furniture Row Racing Toyota)


· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 94.1
2017 Rundown
· Seven wins, 16 top fives, 23 top 10s,
· Led 2068 laps
· Average Finish of 10.1

Texas Motor Speedway Outlook:
· Three top fives, 13 top 10s; two poles
· Average finish of 13.583, eighth-best
· Average Running Position of 12.065, fifth-best
· Driver Rating of 94.1, fifth-best
· 244 Fastest Laps Run
· 5515 Laps in the Top 15 (68.9), sixth-most
· 775 Quality Passes, ninth-most

2 - Kyle Busch (No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 101.5
2017 Rundown
· Five wins, 13 top fives, 20 top 10s,
· Led 1973 laps
· Average Finish of 11.7

Texas Motor Speedway Outlook:
· Two wins, 11 top fives, 12 top 10s; one pole
· Average finish of 11.739, fifth-best
· Average Running Position of 10.876, fourth-best
· Driver Rating of 101.5, third-best
· 420 Fastest Laps Run
· 5631 Laps in the Top 15 (73.5), fifth-most
· 824 Quality Passes, eighth-most

3 - Brad Keselowski (No. 2 Team Penske Ford)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 88.1
2017 Rundown
· Three wins, 14 top fives, 19 top 10s,
Led 777 laps
· Average Finish of 12.7

Texas Motor Speedway Outlook:
· Four top fives, seven top 10s; one pole
· Average finish of 15.667, 10th-best
Average Running Position of 15.050, 13th-best
· Driver Rating of 88.1, ninth-best
· 313 Fastest Laps Run
· 3337 Laps in the Top 15 (55.8 ), 13th-most
· 481 Quality Passes, 14th-most

4 - Kevin Harvick (No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 91.4
2017 Rundown
· One win, 11 top fives, 20 top 10s,
· Led 812 laps
· Average Finish of 11.8

Texas Motor Speedway Outlook:
· Seven top fives, 17 top 10s; one pole
· Average finish of 11.200, fourth-best
· Average Running Position of 13.294, seventh-best
· Driver Rating of 91.4, seventh-best
· 218 Fastest Laps Run
· 5630 Laps in the Top 15 (67.6), seventh-most
· 924 Quality Passes, third-most

5 - Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 107.3
2017 Rundown
· Three wins, four top fives, 11 top 10s,
· Led 217 laps
· Average Finish of 15.5

Texas Motor Speedway Outlook:
· Seven wins, 15 top fives, 21 top 10s; one pole
· Average finish of 8.160, second-best
· Average Running Position of 10.268, third-best
· Driver Rating of 107.3, series-best
· 697 Fastest Laps Run
· 6513 Laps in the Top 15 (78.2), third-most
· 943 Quality Passes, second-most

6 - Ryan Blaney (No. 21 Wood Brothers Racing Ford)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 70.8
2017 Rundown
· One win, four top fives, 13 top 10s,
· Led 290 laps
· Average Finish of 17.2

Texas Motor Speedway Outlook:
· Average finish of 27.600, 31st-best
· Average Running Position of 23.616, 26th-best
· Driver Rating of 70.8, 18th-best
· 74 Fastest Laps Run
· 623 Laps in the Top 15 (38.2), 17th-most
· 92 Quality Passes, 27th-most

7 - Denny Hamlin (No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 88.8
2017 Rundown
· Two wins, 14 top fives, 20 top 10s,
· Led 452 laps
· Average Finish of 11.3

Texas Motor Speedway Outlook:
· Two wins, five top fives, 11 top 10s
· Average finish of 12.565, sixth-best
· Average Running Position of 13.898, eighth-best
· Driver Rating of 88.8, eighth-best
· 188 Fastest Laps Run
· 4978 Laps in the Top 15 (64.9), eighth-most
· 924 Quality Passes, fourth-most

8 - Chase Elliott (No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet)

· Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 98.3
2017 Rundown
· Ten top fives, 18 top 10s,
· Led 525 laps
· Average Finish of 12.6

Texas Motor Speedway Outlook:
· Two top fives, three top 10s
· Average finish of 6.000, series-best
· Average Running Position of 9.562, second-best
· Driver Rating of 98.3, fourth-best
· 35 Fastest Laps Run
· 822 Laps in the Top 15 (85.5), series-most
· 138 Quality Passes, 23rd-most
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AAA Texas 500 Betting News and Notes 1 month 1 week ago #459181

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AAA Texas 500 Preview
By Micah Roberts
VegasInsider.com

I can't believe the 2017 season is almost over. Just three races to go!

Las Vegan Kyle Busch was the first driver to punch his ticket into the Championship 4 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Nov. 19 after winning at Martinsville Speedway on Sunday, the first of three races in the Round of 8. Now he can simply relax the next two races at Texas and Phoenix.

“I think the biggest thing we can do is to allow ourselves to look at the next two weeks and try to keep on winning and allowing the anxiety level of these guys to keep amplifying each and every stage and each and every race and to keep them on their toes as to whether they are going to advance or not," said Busch.

Anxiety? I love it. Kyle Busch is trying to mentally impair his opponents to a state of exhaustion by the time Homestead comes along. Jedi mind tricks by hogging trophies down the stretch.

"If they all have to race for points and race for positions, that’s just going to make it harder for them," Busch continued. "Anytime anyone automatically punches their ticket through, that gives them a breather and an opportunity to work on Homestead and what you need to focus on for that race. We’ll just keep racing hard and try and keep winning the next two weeks even though the pressure is off and see what we can do at Homestead.”

Three spots are still available and the other seven eligible drivers can punch their own ticket into the Championship 4 by winning at Texas on Sunday or Phoenix next week. It's likely that one of the Round of 8 drivers will win both of those races, so the final spot or two will have to point themselves in.

Here's a look at how the standings are heading into Texas:

1) Kyle Busch - He's already clinched, but he might get greedy and grab some more wins beginning with Texas taking away an automatic berth. He's won at Texas twice over his career and has 11 top-five finishes in 23 starts. This dude is getting stronger as the season goes, but he approaches this 1.5-mile track a little different than the others.

“You do now just because of the repave," Busch said of this being the second race since the repave. "Texas is a really fast mile-and-a-half racetrack. Charlotte has been fast the last few years and Texas has always kind of been that way. You’ve got to be able to move around a little bit and run the middle, run the top and show some ability to go all over the racetrack. Hoping that the track has worn in a bit more since the spring, and I’m curious to see how it’s going to be this weekend.”

2) Martin Truex Jr. (+69 points ahead of the cutoff point) - He's won the past four races on 1.5-mile tracks and six of the nine this season. He's the massive favorite to do it again this week. However, he was eighth in the April Texas race which is tied for his worst finish on these type of tracks. He has only three top-fives at Texas in 24 starts.

3) Brad Keselowski (+29) - He won the first race on a 1.5-mile track this season at Atlanta -- actually he vultured the win when Kevin Harvick got penalized -- but he's had only two top-fives on them in the next eight and none in the last five. He's never won at Texas in 18 starts. These are the tracks he's been complaining about a Toyota disadvantage and he's right to the extent only that his team is way behind. How have Ryan Blaney and Harvick been able to compete on 1.5s lately in a Ford?

4) Kevin Harvick (+3) - He's had top-five finishes in two of the past three races on 1.5-mile tracks. His best chance to make the Championship 4 is next week at Phoenix where he's won a track record eight times. However, he's never won there in a Ford which he drives this season.

5) Jimmie Johnson (-3) - I could see the seven-time champ point himself in, but I don't see him winning even though he's won at Texas a record seven times, including the April race. His performance on 1.5s has fallen way off since the beginning of the season when they raced. Truex got better and Joe Gibbs Racing got better while Johnson may have actually gotten worse somehow. His decline has been a mystery, but how can you not root for Johnson to win his eighth title, breaking a tie with Dale Earnhardt and Richard Petty. History is always nice to witness.

6) Denny Hamlin (-6) - This dude was sniffing a win a championship berth and went all out on his home track of Martinsville last week and did everything possible to get the win. He came close, but also took out Chase Elliott along the way which gives us a nice storyline for the next two weeks with paybacks. He's had top-five finishes in his last five starts on 1.5-mile tracks during the JGR progression with the new Camry body. He could point himself in, but he's not counting on it..

“Our number one goal continues to be to win," said Hamlin. "At this point, that’s our only guaranteed shot of making it into the Championship Four at Miami. We have had success in the past at Texas, and hopefully we can repeat that this weekend.”

7) Ryan Blaney (-8) - He's a good long shot possibility this week due to finishing third at Kansas two weeks ago and leading a race-high 148 laps in the April Texas race. It's easy to say he's got plenty of more chances in his career to go after a championship, but I actually think that him making the Championship 4 would add a little new spice to the mix. And he's been really good on 1.5s this season, including third-place at Kansas which was the last race ona 1.5.

8) Chase Elliott (-26) - He has to win to get in, but he's yet to win in his career so why now? It stinks for him he got taken out, but that's short track playoff racing and you better do all you can to keep drivers off your bumper. It's obvious he's become the biggest fan favorite (minus Dale Jr) when the Martinsville stands cheer him and boo Denny Hamlin, a native Virginian, after the race. The promising facts for Elliott to win this week is that He's had a top-five finish in the past four races on 1.5-mile tracks, including Oct. 8 at Charlotte -- Texas sister track -- where he finished second.

Top-5 Finish Prediction:

1) #18 Kyle Busch (5/1)
2) #78 Martin Truex Jr. (3/1)
3) #11 Denny Hamlin (15/1)
4) #4 Kevin Harvick (9/1)
5) #24 Chase Elliott (12/1)
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AAA Texas 500 Betting News and Notes 1 month 1 week ago #459182

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AAA Texas 500 Betting Predictions
By Adam Burke
Bangthebook.com

There are only three races left in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season. This week’s AAA Texas 500 is the second race in the Round of 8 Cup Championship Playoffs at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth. Toyota drivers have won six of the seven playoff races to date and two of them are at the top of the odds board once again this week.

Let’s actually narrow the focus a little bit more. Six of the seven playoff races have been won by Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Busch. It seems to be pretty clear that Joe Gibbs Racing runs NASCAR nowadays and Truex, a member of the Furniture Row Racing satellite team for JGR, and Busch are incredibly hard to stop. This week’s race comes on the 1.5-mile oval in Texas, which means that it is tailor-made for these two guys to be at or near the front of the pack once again.

Eight drivers are still in the running for the championship. The nice thing is that the playing field is leveled once four are left standing heading into Homestead-Miami Speedway, otherwise this could become a runaway. Martin Truex Jr. leads with 4,117 points. Kyle Busch is next with 4,100 points. Brad Keselowski, the only other driver with a playoff win, is third with 4,079 points. Kevin Harvick is fourth with 4,053 points. Jimmie Johnson is just below the cut line with 4,050 points. Ryan Blaney is sixth with 4,047 points. Denny Hamlin is seventh with 4,045 points and Chase Elliott needs a win with 4,027 points.

Truex won at Chicagoland, Charlotte, and Kansas, which are the three 1.5-mile tracks that we have seen in the playoffs so far. Busch won at New Hampshire, Dover, and Martinsville. Keselowski survived the race at Talladega that took out large chunks of the field, including Truex and Busch, otherwise, those two drivers may be looking at a clean sweep in the playoffs.

It’s hard to bet against Martin Truex Jr. this week. He is the race favorite at +250 per 5Dimes Sportsbook. Truex does not have a win at Texas, despite all of his success on 1.5-mile tracks. He finished eighth in the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 back in the spring. In fact, Truex only has three top-five finishes at Texas, with one coming in this race last year when he finished third. Truex was second back in 2013 and third in 2007. Texas hasn’t been that great of a venue for him, but he has seven wins this season. He entered the season with six career wins. Don’t count him out on any track, especially one that suits his strengths.

Kyle Busch is +450 this week and the second favorite. Busch does not have a win in this race, but he does have two career victories in the spring race. The most recent came last year, when the race was delayed by rain and not finished until nearly 3 a.m. local time. He finished 15th in the spring race earlier this year. Four of the last five fall trips to Texas have resulted in top-five finishes, but none of them have resulted in a win. Busch actually didn’t get his first win until Pocono this season. He has four more since then and has won five of the last 13 races. Bettors seem to be getting a decent number on him this week.

Kevin Harvick finished fourth and had the pole position in this race back in the spring. Amazingly, Harvick doesn’t have a win at Texas. Typically, Harvick has one of the fastest cars on the race track, but his only win this season came on the road course at Sonoma. It has been a strange year for him and his team to say the least. Harvick has five straight top-10 finishes in this fall race, including a second in 2014 and a third in 2015. He’s been all around the winner’s circle but hasn’t visited in his career at Texas. With how Busch and Truex are running, this doesn’t seem like his year either.

Chase Elliott at +750 may come as a shock to some, but Elliott needs to be extremely aggressive over these last two races. He needs a win in one of them. He has four top-five finishes, including three second-place finishes, in the playoff races thus far, but he was so far behind on bonus points that he has had a lot of ground to make up. The 21-year-old does not have a Cup Series win yet, but he was fourth in this race last year and fifth in last year’s spring race. He was ninth this year. Elliott has to take some chances. The price isn’t high enough for that gamble, but he’s worth looking at in some matchups.

Jimmie Johnson has seven career wins at Texas, so some may see value in his +1350 price tag. Johnson just hasn’t been consistent enough. He only has one top-five finish since the first race at Dover and it came at Dover, when he finished third. He’s not the right bet this week.

Except for Johnson, you have to go all the way back to 2010 to find an active driver with a win in this race. That was Denny Hamlin. Tony Stewart won in 2011 and Carl Edwards won last year. Hamlin is also +1350 and has three career wins at Texas. Perhaps he’ll get a bit of help from his teammates here. Also, he’s been in the top seven in five of the seven playoff races, so he hasn’t run bad, he just hasn’t been able to run with the top guys. He might be worth a beer money bet.

There aren’t a whole lot of long shots worth a look this week. You might get a long shot in with a restrictor plate race or some other type of congested raceway, but this is a pretty cut-and-dry 1.5-mile oval. That means the equipment and the drivers play a huge part and that’s why the board looks like it does.

Coverage of the AAA Texas 500 will be on NBC Sports Network on Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m. ET.
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AAA Texas 500 Betting News and Notes 1 month 1 week ago #459358

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Texas Fantasy Racing Preview
By: Jeff Wackerlin
Racingone.com

Detailed driver notes and statistics to help set your fantasy racing lineup for Sunday's AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway.

Who's HOT at Texas

• Jimmie Johnson has won six of the last 10 races, including the first race on the newly repaved surface - which included re-profiling of Turns 1 and 2 - in the spring.
• Kevin Harvick is the only driver that has finished in the top 10 in each of the last six races.
• Chase Elliott has finished in the top 10 in his three starts.
• Martin Truex Jr. has finished in the top 10 in his last five starts and combined to lead 256 laps in the last three races.
• Kyle Busch has finished in the top five in five of his last six starts, including a win in the 2016 spring race.
• Dale Earnhardt Jr. has finished sixth or better in his last five starts.
• Joey Logano has posted a 2.7 average finish in the last three races and led 178 laps last fall.

Keep an Eye On at Texas

• Ryan Blaney won the first two stages and led 148 laps in the spring at Texas before a problem on pit road.
• Brad Keselowski has finished sixth or better in four of the last six races at Texas and has led 365 laps in that span.
• Chip Ganassi Racing teammates Kyle Larson and Jamie McMurray each have seven top 10s and an average finish of 11.2 in the nine races at 1.5-mile tracks this season.
• Denny Hamlin (12.7) and Matt Kenseth (13.1) each rank in the top 10 in average finish in the nine races at 1.5-mile tracks this season. Hamlin has finished in the top five in the last five races at 1.5-mile tracks.
• Kurt Busch, who finished 10th in the spring, is coming off his first top five of the year at a 1.5-mile track, finishing second at Kansas.

MRN.com Staff Picks

Jeff Wackerlin: Chase Elliott
Pete Pistone: Martin Truex Jr.
Robbie Mays: Chase Elliott
Tyler Burnett: Kyle Busch
John Singler: Ryan Blaney

Driver Notes - Ordered by Average Finish (Top 15) in the Last Five Races at Texas

Jimmie Johnson leads all drivers with seven wins and 1,023 laps led at Texas. Johnson's victory in the spring was his fourth in the last six races there. In the three races at 1.5-mile tracks since the playoffs started, Johnson has two top 10s and an average finish of 8.7.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. has finished sixth or better in his last five starts at Texas. He's yet to lead a lap in his last 11 starts. Earnhardt finished seventh at Kansas last month for his third top 10 in the nine races at 1.5-mile tracks this season.

Kevin Harvick is the only driver that's finished in the top 10 in the last six races at Texas. Harvick led 77 laps from the pole in the spring to put his laps-led total at 187 in that span. Harvick, who will return in the same chassis (No. 1038) he raced at Texas in April, has finished in the top 10 in each of the last seven races at 1.5-mile tracks.

Chase Elliott is one of four drivers that have finished in the top 10 in each of the last three races at Texas. Those three races are Elliott's only Cup races to date at TMS with his two finishes in 2016 being top fives. Elliott holds the second-best average finish (2.8 ) in the last four races at 1.5-mile tracks, which includes two runner-up finishes.

Kyle Busch finished 15th in the spring in the first race on Texas’ new surface. He was forced to start 34th in that race after his car was unable to get through pre-qualifying inspection. Busch finished in the top five in his five previous starts, including a win in the 2016 spring race. The win was his second in 23 overall starts. Busch has combined to lead 453 laps in the last six races at 1.5-mile tracks this season and finished in the top 10 in four of those events.

Martin Truex Jr. has finished in the top 10 in each of the last five races at Texas. Truex led 49 laps in the spring to push his laps led total to 256 in the last three races, which leads all drivers. Truex has dominated the nine races at 1.5-mile tracks, posted 947 laps led, a 2.8 average finish and six wins.

Brad Keselowski has finished sixth or better in four of the last six races at Texas. In the 2015 fall race he led a race-high 312 laps. This season, Keselowski started the year strong at 1.5-mile tracks with four top 10s, including a win, but has only one top 10 (Chicagoland) in his last five intermediate track races.

Joey Logano has the best average finish (2.7) in the last three races at Texas. Logano, who won the 2014 spring race, led 178 laps and finished second in this event last year. Logano's third-place finish in the spring at Texas is one of five top 10s in the nine races at 1.5-mile tracks. However, he's only led seven laps and finished in the top 20 twice in the last six races at intermediate tracks.

Jamie McMurray finished seventh in the spring at Texas for his fourth top 10 in the last six races there. This season, McMurray ranks sixth in average finish (11.2) in the nine races at 1.5-mile tracks. An accident last month at Kansas snapped a streak of three consecutive top 10s at 1.5-mile tracks.

Kurt Busch finished 10th in the spring for his fourth top 10 in the last six races at Texas. Busch finished second last month at Kansas to lower his average finish to 16.1 in the nine races at 1.5-mile tracks this season.

Matt Kenseth recorded his 18th top 10 in 29 starts at Texas last year in this event. Kenseth, who has two wins at Texas with the last coming in the 2011 spring race, finished 16th in the spring in the first race on the track's new surface. Kenseth's 37th-place finish at Kansas last fall after being involved in an accident and being parked for too many crew members over the wall is his only outside the top 20 in the nine races at 1.5-mile tracks this season. Kenseth has yet to lead a lap at a 1.5-mile track this season.

Kasey Kahne finished 38th in the spring at Texas to snap a streak of two consecutive eighth-place finishes. This season, Kahne has posted a 20.8 average finish in the nine races at 1.5-mile tracks this season. However, Kahne has one top 10 and a 12.0 average finish in his two races at 1.5-mile tracks with crew chief Darian Grubb.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. has yet to finish in the top 10 in nine starts at Texas. He's also yet to finish in the top 10 at a 1.5-mile track this season.

Erik Jones has posted a 17.0 average finish in two starts at Texas. He finished 12th two years ago in this event driving the No. 20 for Matt Kenseth. This season, Jones has posted two top 10s in the nine races at 1.5-mile tracks, including a sixth at Kentucky, which is a track that was recently repaved and reconfigured.

Ryan Newman finished 10th last year in this event for just his sixth top 10 in 28 starts at Texas. Newman's lone top 10 in the nine races at 1.5-mile tracks this season came at Charlotte in May.
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