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NASCAR Cup Odds: Three Drivers Atop Oddsboard

Chase Elliott is one of the favorites in the NASCAR Cup Odds

It has been an eventful start to the NASCAR season, with seven different winners through seven races, including two drivers collecting their first Cup Series checkered flags. At this point in the 2021 season, there are three drivers listed as favorites in the NASCAR Cup championship odds.

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Online sportsbook Bovada has updated its NASCAR Cup championship odds with reigning champion Chase Elliott, Denny Hamlin and Kevin Harvick listed as the +650 co-favorites. They’re followed by Martin Truex Jr. at +700 and Kyle Larson at +750 to round out the top five on the oddsboard.

2021 NASCAR Cup Championship Odds

Chase Elliott+650
Kevin Harvick+650
Denny Hamlin+650
Martin Truex Jr.+700
Kyle Larson+750
Joey Logano+800
Kyle Busch+800
Brad Keselowski+850
Ryan Blaney+1100
William Byron+1400
Christopher Bell+2000
Alex Bowman+2800
Aric Almirola+3300
Kurt Busch+3300
Austin Dillon+5000
Darrell Wallace Jr.+6000
Matt DiBenedetto+6600
Ryan Newman+8000
Chase Briscoe+10000
Cole Custer+10000
Erik Jones+10000
Tyler Reddick+10000
Ross Chastain+15000
Ricky Stenhouse Jr.+20000
Chris Buescher+25000

Odds as of April 1 at Bovada

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Elliott, Hamlin, Harvick: Which Driver has Best NASCAR Cup Odds Value?

I’ll start with the worst value of the three and that’s Kevin Harvick. Last season, Harvick was as consistent as they come with the most top-10s at 27 and most top-fives at 20 while racking up a NASCAR-best nine wins. Through the start of 2021, though, he has just two top-five finishes, has led only 17 laps and hasn’t had a stage win. 

Reigning Champ Slow out of the Gate

I picked Elliott from the outset of the 2020 season and he went on to win that championship. I’m much less bullish this time around. Elliott has just three top-10 finishes this season, no wins and has led just 73 laps. At this point, he needs to find some extra speed as it seems that he’s just a step behind the Toyotas and Fords.

Hamlin Providing Best Value

Hamlin was nearly as dominant as Harvick a season ago with the second-most wins (seven) and top-five finishes (18) and the most stage wins (11). He has maintained that consistency this season, landing inside the top five in six of the seven races, though victory has eluded him. Once he gets that first win, I could see the No. 11 machine in victory lane several more times shortly after.

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NASCAR Cup Odds: Value Pick

Ahead of the season, I was thinking that Kyle Busch might have a bounce-back from a down year in 2020 but things haven’t turned around in the early stages of 2021 and I wouldn’t be playing a futures bet on him now. For me, the biggest betting value is coming from Kyle Larson at +750 and fifth on the oddsboard.

Now a part of the powerhouse Hendrick Motorsports team, Larson has the gear to be a champion in a hurry. Of course, his teammate Chase Elliott achieved that feat last season. The No. 5 machine has one win and three top-five finishes this season, has tied for the most stage wins with three and has led the most laps at 379, which is 120 more than anyone else. 

I’m surprised Larson isn’t a co-favorite over the likes of a Kevin Harvick in the early stages of this season and he clearly has the best value right now.