The 2023 NASCAR Cup Series season is upon us, and Daytona 500 odds are available for the first official race of the new campaign.
NASCAR is unusual among most sports, as its biggest race of the season is also the first. Joe Gibbs Racing driver Denny Hamlin, who has won the Daytona 500 three times, is among four co-favorites listed at +1200.
If you’re feeling a void with no football to bet on this Sunday, check out Daytona 500 odds and different ways to bet on the Great American Race. The 2023 Daytona 500 will be broadcast by FOX beginning at 2:30 p.m. ET.
Odds To Win Daytona 500
Ryan Blaney, Kyle Larson, and Chase Elliott all joined Hamlin as co-favorites to win the Daytona 500 at DraftKings.
|Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||+3000|
|Martin Truex Jr.||+3000|
Daytona 500 Betting Favorites
Let’s examine their track history at Daytona International Speedway to see who might carry an advantage into Sunday’s Big Race.
Ryan Blaney (+1200 odds)
Blaney has made 15 starts at Daytona when you combine the 500 and the track’s annual summer race. His lone Cup victory at this superspeedway came in August 2021 in the Coke Zero 400.
Blaney, entering his eighth Cup season driving for Penske Racing, also posted a pair of top-5 finishes in the Daytona 500 in two of the past three years. He’s got two career runner-up finishes in the Great American Race (2017 and 2020).
Kyle Larson (+1200 odds)
Larson’s had a fairly rough ride as a Cup driver at Daytona. He started first in his last three races at DIS but produced a trio of DNFs (Did Not Finish) due to two wrecks and an engine failure. The Hendrick Motorsports driver has no wins or top-fives in 17 career Cup starts at Daytona.
Chase Elliott (+1200 odds)
Elliott is the preseason betting favorite to win the 2023 Cup Championship (more on this below), but like HMS teammate Larson, he’s still in search of his first career victory at Daytona.
The good news is Elliott has been at his best here in recent years. He’s notched four top-10s in his last five starts, including a pair of consecutive runner-up finishes to start that streak in 2020 and 2021.
Look Down Daytona 500 Oddsboard for Value
Superspeedway racing takes place at Daytona and Talladega during each NASCAR season. It’s a different animal compared to the short tracks, road courses, and intermediate tracks that comprise the Cup schedule.
Adjustments are made to the engines to limit the speeds of cars at these tracks, as NASCAR tries to prevent airborne wrecks that were more prevalent in the past. That said, it still happens, as evidenced by last year’s wreck in the Daytona 500 involving Harrison Burton.
Harrison Burton gets upside down at Daytona. He's okay. pic.twitter.com/oVi4UrJd1Q
— FOX: NASCAR (@NASCARONFOX) February 20, 2022
The key to success at Daytona involves working with teammates to create aerodynamic drafting advantages. Competitors will push each other in this type of pack racing, which is still prone to produce spectacular multi-car accidents at Daytona that can eliminate top contenders.
That’s why trying to handicap (divine?) a winner can be so difficult in the Daytona 500. Rookie Austin Cindric won last year’s Daytona 500 in just his second career Cup start there at odds as high as +3000.
True longshot Michael McDowell, at +10000, won the 2021 Daytona 500 after this late wreck that began between then-Penske teammates Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano.
Take a look at the accident that brought out the caution flag at the end of the #DAYTONA500. pic.twitter.com/M7AUZJ1c1C
— NASCAR (@NASCAR) February 15, 2021
Other Ways to Bet on Daytona 500
There are better ways to wager on the Daytona 500 given the vagaries of superspeedway racing. Instead of trying to pick one driver out of 40 to survive the often unpredictable madness, let’s start with a driver matchup bet.
Chase Elliott (-120) vs. Kyle Larson (+100)
We referenced Larson’s recent — and for the most part, it’s been career — struggles at Daytona. He’s failed to finish in eight of 17 career starts at DIS. He started his career with Chip Ganassi and wrecked in three of his first four Daytona races. Larson’s riding a current three-race DNF streak at Daytona with team owner Rick Hendrick.
In this matchup bet, you’ll just need his teammate to finish higher than Larson. That’s now happened six consecutive times for Elliott at Daytona. Lay some small juice here and take Elliott over Larson. You can bet $120 to win $100.
Winning Car Manufacturer
You’ve got three options here with odds via FanDuel:
Before you get too excited about the juicier odds on a Toyota winning this year’s Daytona 500, there will only be seven entrants for the manufacturer — and that’s if Travis Pastrana can qualify for the event.
Still, and as referenced in the intro, Hamlin is one of the co-favorites to win, competing in Joe Gibbs Racing’s No. 11 Toyota. So, you’ve got that going for you.
Fun fact: Hamlin’s new JGR teammate, Christopher Bell, won his first career Cup race at Daytona in 2021 — but that came on the track’s reconfigured road course.
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Odds to Win 2023 NASCAR Cup Championship
Elliott is the +550 betting favorite to capture this year’s NASCAR Cup Championship. That gives the Hendrick driver a 15.38% implied probability of winning it.
|Driver||2023 Cup Futures at DraftKings|
|Martin Truex Jr.||+1200|
|Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||+5000|
Elliott led the Cup standings for much of last season before Penske Racing driver Joey Logano captured the title. Logano heads into the new season with more attractive +1100 odds to repeat as champion. It would be his third career Cup championship if Logano can pull it off.
One of the challenges with these futures bets involves waiting so long until they are decided. NASCAR’s season is a long and winding road that features 36 points-paying Cup races and two exhibitions.
After the season begins with this week’s Daytona 500, the 2023 NASCAR Cup Championship won’t be decided until November at Phoenix Raceway. Pack some patience if you’re going along for that ride.