Coca-Cola 600 Predictions, Odds & Picks (Cup Series)

coca-cola-600-predictions,-odds-&-picks-(cup-series)

The Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway is NASCAR’s longest race, one that requires drivers to save both themselves and their equipment for the final 100 miles. The race starts under daylight, moves through the darkness and ends at night.

It is important to keep up with the changing conditions on track. Sunday’s race will be contested over 400 laps (600 miles), with three stage breaks (instead of the usual two) after 100, 200 and 300 laps, making the Coke 600 the most valuable points race on the Cup Series calendar. Kyle Larson is the current winner.

Kyle Larson is the only driver who can match Jeff Gordon’s double

. Kyle Larson has already something in common to one of his predecessors from Hendrick Motorsports.

Last year, Larson became the first NASCAR Cup Series driver since Jeff Gordon to win the Coca-Cola 600 and the series championship in the same year. Gordon accomplished the feat in both 1997 and 1998.

Justifiably, Larson is one of the favorites to win this year’s 600, and if he does so, he’ll join an exclusive club. Six drivers are able to go back-to-back at NASCAR’s longest race. They include Buddy Baker, Darrell Waltrip and Neil Bonnett. Gordon Johnson is the other.

Johnson holds the record with three straight victories in NASCAR’s longest race (2003-2005).

Larson sees strong similarities between this and the previous season. Larson has already won this year’s race. Last season, his second victory came in the Coke 600, and then the floodgates opened.

Larson went on to win 10 times and secured the championship with a victory at Phoenix, but he faces adversity in trying to duplicate his Charlotte triumph. Larson posted the fastest qualifying lap on Saturday, but he crashed into the Turn 2 wall. His team had to repair the car.

But starting from the rear in a 600-mile race shouldn’t be an insurmountable impediment. Larson should overcome this “speed bump” to find Victory Lane, we like that.

As a bonus, Larson’s starting position lengthened his odds to +700 at DraftKings Sportsbook. This is good news for all those who want to be the champion.

Strength on Intermediate Speedways Bodes Well for Kyle Busch’s Chances

Last week at Texas Motor Speedway, Kyle Busch led the first 47 laps of the NASCAR All-Star Race before a freak accident ended his evening.

But that race showed Busch’s ability to run 1.5-mile downforce tracks. Earlier this season, Busch finished fourth at Las Vegas after leading 49 laps and third at Kansas after leading 18 laps.

Charlotte has been a favorite track of Busch, so we expect him to be strong contender for Sunday’s win.

Busch is an excellent diagnostician in the field of handling his No. 18 Toyota, and he and crew chief Ben Beshore shouldn’t be befuddled by changing track conditions. A victory is possible, but a third-place finish is highly desirable. Busch qualified fourth, and based on his race management skills alone, he’s worth considering as a co-favorite at +650 via DraftKings.

Martin Truex Jr. Hopes to Rediscover Top Form at a Track He Once Dominated

It seems like ages ago that Martin Truex Jr. led 392 of 400 laps in the Coca-Cola 600 and won the race by 2. 572 seconds.

In reality, it was just six years ago to the day that Truex dominated the 500-mile marathon. Truex is still unable to make the most of the Next Gen car, even though he’s had several good runs in this season.

It’s our feeling that Truex’s status as co-favorite for this year’s Coke 600 is based more on past performance than current reality.

Accordingly, we would recommend avoiding Truex (+650 DraftKings) when making your betting decision, even though he’s a three-time winner at Charlotte.

Truex qualified 14th, with no indication he’s ready to challenge for the win. There are much better bets on the board–pole-winner Denny Hamlin (+800) or second-place qualifier Kurt Busch (+1600), for two glaring examples.

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How to Watch Coca-Cola 600

Coca-Cola 600 Information Race Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR Cup Series race Location Charlotte Motor Speedway Time Sunday, May 29, 6 p.m. ET How to Watch FOX

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