The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series returns after a one-week hiatus and heads to the West Coast for the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway with three drivers sharing the top spot as the odds-on favorite to top the podium.
Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. are each listed at +450 at Sportsbook followed by Clint Bowyer at +650, Kurt Busch at +850, Denny Hamlin at +1100, A.J. Allmendinger and Joey Logano at +1200, Brad Keselowski at +1600 and Ryan Blaney at +2200 to round out the top 10.
The Three Faves all in the thick of the Championship Hunt
Kevin Harvick may have the lead for wins on the season with five but he still trails Kyle Busch in the Monster Energy Cup standings. Harvick is coming off a second-place finish behind teammate Clint Bowyer at the FireKeepers Casino 400 and hasn’t taken a checkered flag in three Cup races, which is his longest drought of the season. However, I would be remiss not to mention that Harvick won this race last year.
Meanwhile, Kyle Busch may lead the standings but he fell short of the podium in Michigan and hasn’t won at this track since 2015. No. 18 has a healthy lead in the standings by not being a crash risk like in years past as evidenced by his top-10 finishes in all but two races this season.
As for Martin Truex Jr., the reigning Monster Energy NASCAR Cup champion has yet to put his stamp on this season as he’s only won two races and is coming off a middle-of-the-pack showing in Michigan when he finished 18th.
If you have to pick between the three, go with Harvick given that he won this race last year and has done well as a favorite, winning five of nine races as chalk. If you’re looking for better value, it may be worth taking a stab at another driver with decent odds and track record at Sonoma.
Hamlin Could Be in Line for His First Win of the Season
Denny Hamlin has found himself in the second tier of drivers on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup circuit, winning the occasional race and peaking in 2009 with nine wins. But since then, he’s regressed and hasn’t topped two wins in a season and has nine wins total from 2010 onward.
This could be the week that No. 11 breaks through as he has six top-five finishes this season and is the only driver on the circuit to finish in the top five in each of the last two years at this track. At +1100, he may be the best value on the board when you consider how well he’s fared in Sonoma recently.