NASCAR Ambetter Health 400 2023 drivers, predictions and best bets: Ross can be the boss
After a wild race, with repercussions, at Phoenix a week ago, it’s time for the NASCAR Cup Series to head to Atlanta Motor Speedway. The recently redesigned Atlanta at that. If we want wild, crazy, on-track action, the new Atlanta is where it’s at. The two races at the track last year were as unpredictable as hoped for. With the unpredictability, just how are we viewing the betting strategy and picks for the Ambetter Health 400? There’s plenty of that coming up.
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Atlanta NASCAR betting strategy
We got two different races at the new Atlanta Motor Speedway last year. In the March race, a 500-mile affair, there was quite a bit of chaos, much like a typical super-speedway tracks such as Daytona or Talladega. However, in the summer race there, a 400-miler, it was a much more straightforward intermediate-style race with it being tougher to pass and drivers that started up front finishing up front.
So what’s in store for Sunday’s race? It’s a bit hard to tell, but initial read is that it is likely to be more similar to July rather than March. The races so far this year have been much more in line with that style and the July race was 400 miles like this one, rather than 500 miles in March. Most of the chaos happened in the last 30 or so laps of the March race. Also, the weather is forecast to be cool, which should increase the grip the cars have and thus make them getting loose and wrecking slightly less likely to happen.
Odds listed from DraftKings Sportsbook unless otherwise noted.
Outright winner picks for Ambetter Health 400
Ross Chastain +1200
Ross Chastain finished P2 in both Atlanta races last year. Considering they were two completely different races, that’s impressive. The Trackhouse Racing cars have been fast in the drafting style of races over the last year or so, which should help him be at or near the front of the pack for much of the race. He also has the advantage of being in a Chevy, which has won 7 of the last 8 restrictor-plate races.
Bubba Wallace +2000
Bubba Wallace is perhaps the best Toyota plate racer at this point, and these odds are still a nice pay off for a driver of his ilk at these tracks. The other thing to consider with Wallace is that he has arguably been the fastest Toyota at intermediate tracks this year. So regardless of how this track will race, whether a plate race breaks out or a fairly standard intermediate happens, he should have the skills to be a factor late in the race.
Daniel Suarez +2500
Granted, it’s a small sample size, but Daniel Suarez finished P6 or better in both Atlanta races a year ago, which as we’ve stated were two different styles of race. Suarez has been just as fast as his teammate Chastain since the second half of last year and always seems to be a sneaky play at these plate tracks for DFS, so why not take advantage of the 25/1 return we’re getting here?
Corey Lajoie +5000
We always need a longshot bet, right? Lajoie serves just that purpose for us. However, there is more upside than just a dart throw at long odds. Lajoie nearly won this race in July and has consistently said that he has these types of races circled on his calendar for his best chance of winning and making the NASCAR playoffs. So if he heads into these races with his highest confidence and often has his best races at these races, why not back that confidence at a nice return?
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Top prop picks for Ambetter Health 400
Martin Truex Jr. top-10 finish +115 (FanDuel Sportsbook)
It’s tempting to want the odds on Martin Truex Jr. to win outright but why not take plus-odds to simply finish in the top-10? He ran well at Atlanta a year ago and with us anticipating more of a July-style race, it’s looking better for him to land in the top 10. He was in the top 10 for most of both races in 2022, so we should be expecting that again this year given the speed he comes in with.
Corey Lajoie top-10 finish +500 (FanDuel Sportsbook)
Hedge alert. If we don’t want the sweat of Lajoie having to win it all to hit a 50/1 return, let’s take him to finish 10x further back for 10x less return. Sounds fair right? If he finishes in the top 10, a 5-1 return is still a really nice ROI, especially a track that’s now considered a plate track. He’s been a threat for a top 10 in the last several plate races so the history is there for this bet to make sense.
Justin Haley top-10 finish +340 (FanDuel Sportsbook)
Every time Justin Haley is on track at a plate race he’s a threat to win. That makes getting 3.4x return a serious bonus for him this race. The Kaulig Racing cars have been lightning quick at all formats of tracks this year which means he should be covered for whatever type of race breaks out.
Ty Gibbs top-10 finish +600 (FanDuel Sportsbook)
Ty Gibbs has had success at this style of track, and specifically this one, in the Xfinity Series. Now he’s starting to find the speed in his JGR Toyota. We like other Toyotas this week with Truex and Wallace in play, so we’ll add Gibbs for a top-10 at one of the best returns on the board.
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