NASCAR Pennzoil 400 2023 Drivers, Predictions and Best Bets: Kyle Busch could be the one to beat in Vegas

Kyle Busch drives the #18 M&M's Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing
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Matt Selz


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NASCAR handicapper for Pickswise, looking to give you winners throughout the season!

The gambling capital of the world, and one that will be the capital of the F1 world later this year, is host to NASCAR this weekend. It’s a triple-header race weekend for NASCAR, but the main event is the Cup Series’ Pennzoil 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Following surprises at Daytona and Fontana, who will win the Pennzoil 400 and what does betting strategy look like for Vegas?

Pennzoil 400 Track Info and Betting Strategy

First thing’s first: Las Vegas Motor Speedway is a relatively standard 1.5-mile track with progressive banking in the corners. The max banking of 20 degrees in the corners is on the steeper side for intermediate tracks of this length. It produces very good side-by-side racing, though, and given the banking and the condition of the pavement this is one of the faster 1.5-mile tracks. All of this means that track position has been key here in the past for drivers to have good days. If we look at the last 10 races at Vegas, including both races a year, only 3 times has a driver won from outside the top-10 starting spots and twice it was P13. In terms of how we’re looking at past results for this race, we’re focusing on the combined stats at all the high-speed, low-wear, intermediates a from last year. This race a year ago was just the second “standard” race in this package and a lot of teams were still figuring a lot of stuff out. 

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Las Vegas NASCAR Cup Race Predictions, Odds, And Top Bets

Odds listed come from DraftKings Sportsbook

Outright Winner Bets

Kyle Busch +600

Busch has been remarkably fast all season on 3 different track types, including the Clash. He is coming off a win last weekend at Auto Club. Now Busch is running all 3 races this weekend at his home track which should give him plenty of time on track to get a feel for how it’s racing this particular weekend. There’s the fact that the 8-car team had a very fast car in total speed ratings on intermediates lat year, as well.

Martin Truex Jr. +1200

Las Vegas has been a very good track for him in the past several races. Truex has finished P8 or better in 10 of the last 11 trips here. At high-speed intermediate tracks last year, Truex ranked third in the Cup Series in total speed rating — which takes into account Green Flag Speed, Late-Run Speed and Early-Run Speed. Consistency is the start of winning and Truex has has the speed to win early this year, as well.

Alex Bowman +2000

Bowman has been fast. He was also fast at similar tracks to Vegas — and Vegas itself — last year. In fact in one of the races here last year he climbed through the field twice after various issues throughout the race. If he can avoid those issues this time around, there’s little doubt that the 48-car team doesn’t show up with top-flight speed with a shot to win on Sunday.

Daniel Suarez +2500

This line started at 50/1 on DraftKings and moved quickly to where it sits now. That should tell you what folks think of his chances this weekend at Vegas; and rightfully so. He has been really fast at these types of tracks since getting into the 99-car with TrackHouse Racing. That includes last weekend at Auto Club. Teammate Ross Chastain has also been remarkably fast as well and is going off at +800, so why wouldn’t we take the bigger return on practically the same car?

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Prop Bets

Bubba Wallace Top-5 Finish +400

The Toyotas were incredibly fast in the second half of last year on intermediate tracks and that includes Wallace. His total speed rating at Kansas and Vegas in the Fall placed him second in the field, not to mention he was fast at Vegas in bot traces last year but didn’t get the results he should have. There’s a chance this bet gets longer if he has a so-so qualifying, as well, but he should still have the ability and setup to make a run through the field.

Group B Winner – Denny Hamlin +250

This group has Hamlin along with Chase Elliott, Ryan Blaney and William Byron and among those, the best driver is Hamlin. His average finish at high-speed intermediates last year was 4.4 and he had the best car here in the Spring race before issues arose. It’s hard to look past a driver who was the best at this distance and not take him at favorable odds, as well.

Martin Truex Jr. Top-5 Finish +140

This is a bit of a hedge bet. If we like him to compete for the win and be at or near the front all day, why not take this one, too? We’re getting positive money on the line for a guy who has been consistently good at this track and distance over the last several years. That’s too much to look past.

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At Pickswise we offer free NASCAR picks including analysis and NASCAR betting advice from expert NASCAR handicappers.

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