NASCAR’s Richmond sets up well for Harvick is an independent sports news and information service. has partnerships with some of the top legal and licensed sportsbook companies in the US. When you claim a bonus offer or promotion through a link on this site, Gaming Today may receive referral compensation from the sportsbook company. Although the relationships we have with sportsbook companies may influence the order in which we place companies on the site, all reviews, recommendations, and opinions are wholly our own. They are the recommendations from our authors and contributors who are avid sports fans themselves.

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Nothing quite like a cool spring evening of NASCAR racing under the stars of the old Capital of the Confederacy on Richmond’s flat 3/4-mile layout where speeds are just fast enough to wow while also slow enough to make the drivers feel more comfortable about sending messages to their competitors.

I have several tracks I like equally, but I must say, I do think this is my favorite track in the Sprint Cup series because it is so unique and creates drama. It used to be Bristol, but that track certainly isn’t the same as the thousands of empty seats verified on Sunday.

Your best bet to finding the winner in Saturday night’s race is look back at what happened in the March 15 race at Phoenix, a track that requires a very similar set-up. Who dominated, who led the second and third most laps and then you might want to look at some recent history.

Kevin Harvick led 224 of the 312 laps and won for the fourth straight time at Phoenix. Brad Keselowski led 52 laps and finished sixth. Joey Logano led twice for 35 laps and ended up eighth while Jamie McMurray started third and finished second and led the only other lap. Kurt Busch finished fifth. That’s right, only four drivers led and Harvick led the way by a bunch, again.

Because of Phoenix and also what Harvick has been doing all season, he comes in as the easy favorite again, which is a weekly theme now on any type of track. He may have finally finished outside of the top-10 with his 38th-place finish at Bristol, but he still led a race-high six times for 184 laps. He finally got bit by some bad luck. Still, six top-two finishes in eight starts isn’t bad.

Twice over Harvick’s career, he has won at both Richmond and Phoenix in the same season. In 2006 and 2013 he swept Phoenix and then won at Richmond in each. He’s a three-time winner in 28 starts compared to Phoenix where he’s in the midst of winning the past four consecutively. Obviously his edge is a little greater at Phoenix, but he’s still rated a notch above everyone else and then it drops to Keselowski, Logano and Kurt Busch.

Last season it was Keselowski winning in the spring at Richmond and Logano in the fall. The third and final flat track used as a comparison with Richmond and Phoenix is New Hampshire’s one-mile layout and the Penske boys won both of those, too. Harvick won at all three in 2006.

Throughout each of those track’s history, there have been several guys doing the double-double between the three tracks, which is why we’re going to pay close attention to the Phoenix race. History routinely repeats itself here. If fast on one, surely they’ll be fast on the other.

Good long shots to maybe take a shot with this week are the Ganassi teammates McMurray and Kyle Larson.

Micah Roberts is a former Las Vegas race and sports book director, one of The Linemakers on , and longtime motorsports columnist and sports analyst at GamingToday. Follow Micah on Twitter @MicahRoberts7 Contact Micah at [email protected].

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