Daytona, FL – The granddaddy of them all, the Daytona 500, is finally here. 40+ drivers are averaging speeds over 190 mph competing for NASCAR’s top prize. Every 3rd Sunday in February means it’s time to play another fun-filled season of NASCAR DFS and laying big odds for big payouts on driver’s week in and week out. No matter how you did in 2019, the slate is wiped clean, and you can learn from last year’s mistakes. So, let’s jump into this week’s picks.
Sunday, February 16
2:30 p.m.: Daytona 500. (Fox)
- Ryan Blaney (DK: $9,300) – Blaney will start from the rear after going to the backup car, which means that is plenty of place differential points in most leagues with a suitable vehicle.
- David Ragan (DK: $5,200) – This could be Ragan’s final Daytona 500 as a cup driver, and he wants to make his last one memorable. Throughout his career, Ragan has run well at Daytona, including 1 win, 3 Top 5, 5 Top 10, and 13 Top 20 finishes. People also forget he was leading the 2011 Daytona 500 in the final laps when he was black-flagged for changing lanes before he got to the starting line. He qualified 30th as well as ran 16th fastest in practice 3 and 7th in final practice.
- Ty Dillon (DK: $5,700 – Dillon qualified 24th for the 500 and is one of those drivers who consistently finds the top of the leaderboard. In eight career starts at Daytona, he has 1 Top 5, 3 Top 10, and 4 Top 20 finishes, including finishing 6th in last year’s 500. I predict that the trend continues with a lot of place differential points to be racked up.
Daytona 500 Matchup Picks via 5Dimes
- Ty Dillon (+110) over Austin Dillon
- Alex Bowman (+110) over Ryan Blaney
- Ryan Preece (-120) over John Hunter Nemechek
Outright Winners (odds Via 5dimes)
Kyle Larson +3300 –
Over his last four races at Daytona Larson has either qualified in the middle or back of the pack to start the race, but that hasn’t stopped him from moving up in the field. In 2020 Larson qualified 8th– the best starting position of his career at this track. He knows how to stay out of trouble recently at Daytona, and with considerable odds with a big payout, he is worth the bet to win it all.
|Daytona 500 Year||Start||Finish|
Jimmie Johnson +2750 –
This is Jimmie Johnson’s final Daytona 500, and he hasn’t found the winners circle since June 4, 2017. Johnson will be running up front in Row 3 and poised to stay there. Johnson has some disappointing 500 finishes the past couple years but finished 9th in the 2019 Daytona 500 and 3rd in a rain-shortened 2019 Coke Zero Sugar 400.
Kyle Busch +1320 –
The legendary Kyle Busch is 0-14 in Daytona 500- a stat he plans to change this Sunday. Busch stated this week that he aspires to “check that last box” in his career. He finished 2nd last year in the Daytona 500, the best finish in his career. Busch qualified 28th, which is right where he wants. Last year he qualified 31st and found his way to the top five. This history will also bode well for DFS players. Overall the track has not been kind to Busch, but that will change on Sunday.
|Daytona 500 Year||Start||Finish|
Kevin Harvick +1300 –
This is strictly a trend pick for me. The average winning Daytona 500 starting spot the last six races is 9.6. I’m going to round up to 10th, and Kevin Harvick is sitting at +1300. I think that is insane value for a top tier driver. Harvick did win the Daytona 500 back in 2007 but has not fared well recently at Daytona with an average finishing spot of 26th in the last six races there. So buyer beware.
Good Luck everyone on your bets and always bet responsibly
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