Let’s take a look at the current NASCAR odds:
- Denny Hamlin +200
- Kyle Busch +225
- Kevin Harvick +260
- Martin Truex Jr. +275
Denny Hamlin won his second Daytona 500 in February, but he still needed a victory in the last playoff qualifying event in Phoenix to make it into NASCAR’s Final Four.
Hamlin joins Kevin Harvick, Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Busch in the race for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida.
The final race of the series takes place on Sunday, Nov. 17. Defending champion Joey Logano finished fifth in the points standings and does not have a shot at a repeat title.
“This race team worked so hard this whole year,” Hamlin said of his No. 11 crew. “They deserve to be there.”
The victory also placed Hamlin (+200) atop the odds board going into the final race of the season (NASCAR Vegas odds provided by Bovada). Busch (+225) is listed second, while Harvick (+260) and Truex Jr. (+275) round out the NASCAR Final 4 odds.
What Bettors Need to Know
The NASCAR playoff system has been changed multiple times since the Chase for the Championship was announced in 2004. The 10-race playoff format, which ends in Miami, involves 16 drivers chosen primarily on wins during the regular season.
The first nine races are used as eliminations until the top four drivers are left. These drivers compete against each other while racing in the standard field of 40 cars.
- Playoff points are off the table in the final race of the year as the Championship 4 drivers enter the “winner-take-all” race tied in the standings.
- All four contenders have won on the Miami track — Harvick (2014), Truex (2017), Busch (2015), and Hamlin (2009, 2013).
- Hamlin has two wins in 14 tries in Miami, but Harvick’s average finish of 6.56 is the best at the track among the four playoff drivers.
- Miami will no longer host the final race of the season as the race date will move to late March. The final race of the season will now be held in Phoenix.
Final Four Prediction
Let’s take a look at all four finalists and try to pick the 2019 champion (Bovada NASCAR odds are listed after the driver’s name and car number):
Denny Hamlin — No. 11 Toyota +200
This is the first time the 38-year-old Hamlin has been in the Final Four since 2014. The native of Tampa, Florida, has never won a championship, but he made many trips to Victory Lane this season. Hamlin won six races to go along with 19 Top 5s and 23 Top 10s.
“I try not to put too much into it,” Hamlin said of his qualifying victory in Phoenix. “There’s still work to be done. Doesn’t guarantee a championship. Gives us a chance. Live to fight another day. That’s all you can ask for.
Kyle Busch — No. 18 Toyota +225
The 34-year-old Busch was the leading points earner in the postseason after the three qualifying race winners. The 2015 champion had an excellent regular season with four victories, 16 Top 5s and 26 Top 10s. But the driver known by multiple nicknames such as “Rowdy,” “Wild Thing,” and “The Candy Man” hasn’t won a race since June 2.
“It’s cool to have a chance to go race for a championship,” said Busch after finishing second in Phoenix. “Just keep coming up short,” added the driver who enters his fifth straight championship event.
Kevin Harvick — No. 4 Ford +260
The 33-year-old Harvick won four times in 34 starts this season, including a victory in Texas in early November to clinch a playoff spot — his fifth appearance in six years. The 2014 champion had 14 Top 5s and 25 Top 10s this season after finishing third in the NASCAR postseason in 2018.
“I think every year is different,” Harvick said. “For me, I would tell you that I don’t think we’ve run as well as we probably wanted to run week in and week out compared to the things that we expect.”
Martin Truex Jr. — No. 19 Toyota +275
The 39-year-old Truex blew away the field at Martinsville to guarantee his spot in the Final Four. The 2017 champion had seven victories, 14 Top 5s and 23 Top 10s this season after finishing second to Logano in the 2018 playoffs. Truex has a win and a second in his last two races at Homestead-Miami.
“I would say, right now, I’m having as much fun as I’ve ever had racing. So I don’t see any end in sight,” said the 16-year veteran race car driver, who’s from New Jersey.
VGB’s pick — Hamlin (+200). The 15-year veteran racer is the only one in this foursome who has never won a championship, but he is the hottest driver on the circuit right now. Throw away the accident-related results in Texas and Hamlin has been in the Top 5 in every start since September.
See below the top sportsbooks where you can wager online and choose the best one for you: