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Talladega Picks – Gordon Gets A Break, Returns To Victory Lane at Talladega

Posted by Lee-Roy Buckles on 4/21/2010 3:11:44 PM
NASCAR odds: Jeff Gordon

Online betting players know that the Aaron’s 499 at Talladega is usually a crapshoot, but it does take a certain amount of skill to get around NASCAR’s biggest track. This week’s winner is a guy who knows where Victory Lane is at this track very well, and after a number of close calls, he’ll break a 37-race winless streak..

NASCAR betting odds: Jeff Gordon
  • What: NASCAR Betting
  • When: Sunday, April 25th, 1:00 PM ET
  • Where: Talladega Superspeedway, Talladega, AL
  • Defending Champion: Brad Keselowski
  • The Storyline

    Talladega’s 2.66-mile track is a giant roulette wheel where anything can happen, as we saw in Brad Keselowski’s car-flipping win over Carl Edwards in last year’s Aaron’s 499, and again with Jamie McMurray’s surprise victory in the fall. “The Big One” is always one turn away and it’s ruined many a day (and a racecar).

    Talladega Picks – The Favorite

    Tony Stewart (+1000) and Kyle Busch (+1000) are the favorites with Jeff Gordon (+1100) and Dale Earnhardt Jr. (+1100) not far behind, and you’d probably have to go with the Hendrick duo of Gordon and Junior, who have combined for 11 wins here. Gordon had the best car at Texas before he was caught up in a wreck with Stewart, and that’s probably the third race, at least, he has lost this year, but it’s not for a lack of effort.

    Earnhardt (whose father holds the record with 10 Talladega wins) won all five of his races in a seven-race span from 2001 to 2004. Stewart and Busch have won just one race apiece here, but Busch has four DNFs in 10 Talladega races.

    Talladega Picks – The Second Tier

    The next group is led by Jimmie Johnson (+1200), Kevin Harvick (+1200), 2009 fall winner Jamie McMurray (+1500), Carl Edwards (+1500) and Kurt Busch (+1500). Johnson is a threat anywhere, and he almost stole the Texas race from Denny Hamlin before settling for second. He won the 2006 spring race, but he has almost as many DNFs (six) as top-10s (seven) in 16 Talladega races. McMurray’s only career wins have come on plate tracks, but he’s too inconsistent, although he does know how to work the draft. Edwards shouldn’t be this high as he’s never fared well on plate tracks.

    Harvick and Busch are arguably the best current drivers not to win at Talladega, but Harvick has a plate win (2007 Daytona 500) under his belt. Still, if you’re going to take a driver from this group in your sportsbook, Busch is the way to go with 12 top-10s in 18 Talladega races and only three DNFs. Sooner or later, he’ll get lucky, and you need luck here.

    Talladega Picks – The Longshots

    The young guys are showing that they can handle the draft as Brad Keselowski (+2000) and Joey Logano (+3000) each finished in the top 10 in both Talladega races last year. Keselowski won this event, although he almost sent Edwards’ No.99 car into the grandstands, and came in eighth in the fall. Logano ran third in the fall after a ninth-place finish in the spring, and he looks more comfortable in the No.20 machine.

    Talladega Prediction & Outlook

    You need to know how to draft to get around Talladega, and given his record here, Jeff Gordon may be the best among active drivers. He knows when to hang back, and when to make moves, and he’s hungry as ever if you watched him drive at Texas. Four of his six Talladega wins have come in the spring races, and this is as good a place as any for him to snap his winless streak. Jeff Gordon is the sports betting play here.

    Pick: Jeff Gordon



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