America’s foremost auto racing circuit is NASCAR, which competes on tracks around the country in cars made to resemble those driven on the street. Founded in 1948, NASCAR was long a niche sport popular mainly in the South before star drivers like Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt helped it go national in the 1990s.
NASCAR’s top circuit, the Cup Series, now competes everywhere from rural South Carolina to the streets of downtown Chicago, and it will offer a variety of NASCAR betting odds when legal sports betting launches in North Carolina.
NASCAR’s 2023 Cup Series schedule includes 36 points races spanning 25 tracks in 20 U.S. states. The first 26 races constitute the regular season, while the final 10 determine the series champion.
The 2023 campaign opened with Kyle Larson the NASCAR championship betting favorite at +360, followed by Chase Elliott at +500. But late in the season, William Byron and Denny Hamlin emerged as +350 co-favorites for the title.
Byron leads all drivers in victories, while Hamlin rode a playoff hot streak into championship contention. Larson was close behind at +450, while Elliott was out of the running—he missed six races after breaking his leg in a snowboard accident, missing the NASCAR Playoffs as a result.
Ryan Blaney (+500), Martin Truex Jr. (+600) and Chris Buescher (+750) are other top title contenders.
In states that allow mobile wagering, over 90% of bets are placed online, and there's every indication that North Carolina will follow suit. Top online North Carolina sportsbook apps will offer NASCAR championship odds as well as a full menu of online betting options for each week’s race.
You can bet on one driver to win outright, or go with other options like a top-three, top-five or top-10 finish. Head-to-head driver matchups and group betting will also be available online, as will props like winning car manufacturer or top-finishing driver for each team.
The bigger the race, the more online wagering options sports bettors will find.
While NASCAR’s national division consists of three series—the Cup Series, Xfinity Series and Craftsman Truck Series—the overwhelming majority of NASCAR betting odds in North Carolina will involve the Cup Series.
Within that 36-race Cup Series schedule, some races stand out more than others, akin to major championships in golf. Those events like the Daytona 500 will typically offer a broader array of NASCAR betting odds than other races, though bettors will find staples like outright winner every week.
The “Super Bowl of NASCAR” is the sport’s season-opening points race. Contested since 1959, the Daytona 500 is held on a big, fast 2.5-mile oval track that’s known for 190 mph speeds, and it produces the occasional surprise winner.
This is the annual spring race at Talladega, a 2.66-mile behemoth of a racetrack that can make even Daytona look tame. Talladega’s high banks generate tremendous speeds, drivers race in five-wide packs, and the winner feels joy and relief in equal measure.
The 600 is a Memorial Day weekend tradition in Charlotte since 1960. A crown jewel of the sport, the modern 600 runs from late afternoon into evening, forcing drivers to adjust to changing track conditions as well as the distance of NASCAR’s longest race.
The annual fall race in Charlotte was switched in 2018 to a “ROVAL” which incorporates the infield road course in addition to the four corners of the oval track. The result is a race with lots of action, all of it magnified by the event’s placement deep in the NASCAR Playoffs.
Track the latest Bank of America ROVAL 400 odds for 2023's race!
For the title contenders in NASCAR’s top series, it all comes down to this. NASCAR’s playoff whittles the postseason field down to four final drivers, and the highest finisher among that group on the 1-mile oval takes home the championship.
The top 16 drivers at the end of the regular season qualify for the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs, which over the season’s final 10 events progressively reduces the field down to a “Championship 4." Winning races is prioritized—winning automatically gets drivers into the playoff, and automatically qualifies them for the next round.
Without a race victory, drivers are left to survive on points gained from their finishing positions, which means one wreck or breakdown can destroy their title hopes. Every three playoff events, the field is reduced, and those who get eliminated are racing only for pride the rest of the way.
The NASCAR Cup Series Race Championship will be held on Nov. 5, 2023, at the Phoenix Raceway in Avondale, Ariz.
William Byron and Ryan Blaney have already qualified for the Round of 8, thanks to race wins in the Round of 12. Here's the top eight in championship standings, with position relative to the cut line:
|Position||Driver||Total Points |
|1||William Byron||3136 (41)||+0|
|2||Ryan Blaney||3078 (14)||+0|
|3||Denny Hamlin||3108 (32)||+50|
|4||Christopher Bell||3080 (16)||+22|
|5||Chris Buescher||3077 (21)||+19|
|6||Martin Truex Jr.||3075 (36)||+17|
|7||Kyle Larson||3073 (24)||+15|
|8||Brad Keselowski||3060 (12)||+2|
Drivers have to be able to win races to win the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs—that’s the way this format is set up. Joey Logano won two of the final four events to claim the 2022 title, while Kyle Larson won four of the last five races to earn the 2021 crown. Just running well isn’t good enough.
Sports bettors when making NASCAR championship picks should look for drivers who have proven they can win races at the most important time of the year.
The best active driver without a championship, Denny Hamlin is peaking at the right time and has been in the thick of race contention for four consecutive weeks, with one victory over that span. The veteran driver exudes confidence and owns an excellent career record on the playoff tracks that remain.
William Byron leads the circuit with six wins and has already punched his ticket to the next round. Byron is cool and unflappable; he drives for the team with the most reliable cars around—but he’s also never been this deep in the championship hunt, and no one knows how he’ll fare under pressure.
Kyle Larson hasn’t had his best season, but he keeps hanging around thanks to wins like his victory in the NASCAR Cup Series Playoff opener at Darlington. At his best, Larson can be better than anybody, and his title hopes hinge on whether that dominant driver who led 201 laps to win the spring Phoenix race shows up again.
NASCAR odds are expressed in moneyline format—the higher the number, the bigger the longshot and the larger the prospective payout.
Taking Brad Keselowski +1800 to win the championship means you’d earn $1,800 for every $100 wagered if he hoists the trophy. A minus sign, by contrast, means you’d have to bet that much to earn $100 in winnings; Ryan Blaney -110 for a top-10 finish means you’d have to bet $110 to win $100.
Outright winners, matchups, props, group betting—they’ll all use moneyline odds, which make NASCAR bets very easy to understand and place.
North Carolina sports bettors will soon be able to choose from an array of NASCAR wager types. Although outright winner picks get the most attention, bettors will also be able to wager on head to head and group bets, futures, props and live betting. Here’s a breakdown of the most popular types of NASCAR bets and how to bet in North Carolina on them.
You’re betting on one driver to finish ahead of another, regardless of what happens in the rest of the race. Head to head bets pit two drivers paired by the sportsbook; an example would be Kevin Harvick -120 vs. Austin Cindric -110. You’d earn $100 for every $110 wagered should Cindric finish ahead of Harvick.
You’re betting on one driver to win the race. Taking Kyle Busch at +1400 to win at Charlotte, for example, would pay $1,400 for every $100 wagered should Busch prevail.
Although it’s easy to learn what tracks favor which drivers, this is still a hard bet to win.
These are bets placed on events coming up in the future, and you get more favorable odds by betting in advance. The most common NASCAR futures bet is the championship. William Byron, for example, was an +800 championship bet in February, and he’s +350 now. Betting far ahead gets you more profitable odds, but the risk is that an injury or another unforeseen event scuttles your hopes.
Props are fun wagers that often don’t have much do with which driver wins the race. Who will be the top-finishing driver for each manufacturer? Who will be the top-finishing driver within a group of three or four drivers? Will the race go into overtime?
Props are numerous, and big races like the Daytona 500 can feature lots of them.
You’re betting on live events happening right now with odds shifting as the race unfolds. A pre-race favorite can suddenly become an underdog if he falls behind early, which presents an increased value possibility for the bettor confident in the favorite rallying to win.
Want to make the most of your NASCAR wagering experience once North Carolina sports betting goes live? Just follow these tips.
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Once legal sports betting launches in North Carolina, sports bettors will be able to bet on NASCAR at any of the mobile sportsbooks operating in the state. In states where sports betting is already legal, you can bet at sportsbooks like DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, Caesars, and more.
While the exact types of NASCAR bets will vary by sportsbooks, most top North Carolina betting apps will offer outright winner wagers, top-three, top-five and top-10 finish bets, head to head and group betting, futures and props.
NASCAR betting is easy—all wagers are in moneyline format, and once you understand how one works, you’ll understand them all. But easy to place doesn’t mean easy to win; a lot can happen in a race, so no bets are guaranteed winners.
Charlotte, North Carolina, hosts two NASCAR Cup Series races annually. Every Memorial Day weekend the track hosts the Coca-Cola 600, and every fall it hosts the Bank of America 400, currently contested on the “ROVAL” road-oval hybrid layout.
Yes, all of the major sportsbooks operating in the U.S. offer odds on NASCAR, though some offer a greater variety of bets than others. You may have to shop around across major sportsbooks to find the most valuable odds.
NASCAR is an acronym that stands for the "National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing." Originally, it was meant to stand for the "National Stock Car Racing Association," but the official title was changed as that name was already in use.
NASCAR races typically take around three hours, though they can last longer depending on the number of accidents and caution periods. The Daytona 500 in 2023, for example, lasted three hours and 38 minutes. The Bank of America ROVAL 400 in 2022 lasted just under three hours.
The number of drivers in a NASCAR race vary due to a number of different factors at each race. NASCAR starting fields typically consist of between 36 and 40 cars, depending on the number of teams that enter the race.
Richard Petty, known as "The King," owns the most Daytona 500 wins with seven, the most recent coming in 1981. He is one of only 12 drivers with multiple wins, though the next closest is Cale Yarborough with four career wins.
NASCAR odds are typically released beginning on Monday for the following week’s race. The outright winner odds will appear first, followed by top-three odds and top-five odds, as well as various prop bets over the following few days.
The top 16 drivers after the season’s first 26 races advance into the 10-race NASCAR Playoff. The playoff field is gradually cut down to four drivers for the finale—and the top finisher among that “Championship 4” wins the title.
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