The 2020 Quaker State 400 Betting Preview, Odds, Props and Predictions

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Quaker State 400 NASCAR

On Sunday, July 12th, NASCAR will be live from the Kentucky Speedway in Sparta, Kentucky, for the Quaker State 400. This will be the 17th race of the season and a different challenge for the drivers than what they faced last week at Indianapolis.

Kevin Harvick has opened up a commanding lead in the standings and enters into this weekend’s race as the betting favorite. He’s followed by Denny Hamlin, Chase Elliott, Kyle Busch and Brad Keselowski at most NASCAR betting sites.

Race Profile

The first Cup Series race at Kentucky was in 2011. Since then, this 1.5 mile long track has become a popular speedway among drivers and fans for the racing action. Sunday’s Quaker State 400 breaks down as follows:

  • Total Miles: 400.5 miles
  • Total Laps: 267 laps
  • Stage 1: First 80 laps
  • Stage 2: Second 80 laps
  • Final Stage: Remaining 107 laps

The Quaker State 400 is set to begin at 2:30 PM ET and will air live on FS1.

What to Watch for at Kentucky

With all of the action heading into this mid-July weekend, the following racing storylines are worth keeping an eye on at Kentucky:

  • Can Kyle Busch get his first win of 2020 at a track he’s won at twice before?
  • Will Harvick or Hamlin dominate this race?
  • Is this the week Team Penske gets back into the winner’s circle?
  • Can Kurt Busch defend his title from last year?
  • Will Martin Truex Jr. win this race for the third time in the last four years?

Previous Quaker State 400 Winners

The inaugural race at Kentucky Superspeedway was won by Kyle Busch in 2011. Since then, Brad Keselowski has gone on to win the race three times, which is the most among drivers. Kurt Busch is the defending champ having won this race last year. The following is a list of previous winners:

  • Kyle Busch in 2011, 2015
  • Brad Keselowski in 2012, 2014, 2016
  • Matt Kenseth in 2013
  • Martin Truex Jr. in 2017, 2018
  • Kurt Busch in 2019

As you can see, only five drivers have ever won this race. Truex Jr. is the only driver to win this race in consecutive seasons. All five previous winners will take the field this Sunday. Only Joe Gibbs Racing and Team Penske have won this race before and have cars in the field on Sunday.

NASCAR Quaker State 400 Betting Odds

The following NASCAR betting odds are courtesy of BetOnline:

  • Kevin Harvick (+450)
  • Denny Hamlin (+550)
  • Chase Elliott (+600)
  • Kyle Busch (+650)
  • Brad Keselowski (+800)
  • Martin Truex Jr (+800)
  • Joey Logano (+900)
  • Ryan Blaney (+1100)
  • Alex Bowman (+1600)
  • Jimmie Johnson(+2500)
  • Kurt Busch (+2500)
  • Aric Almirola (+2800)
  • Erik Jones (+3300)
  • William Byron (+3300)
  • Clint Bowyer (+4000)
  • Christopher Bell(+5000)
  • Matt Kenseth (+5000)
  • Matt DiBenedetto (+6600)
  • Tyler Reddick (+6600)
  • Austin Dillon (+12500)
  • Justin Allgaier (+15000)
  • Cole Custer (+20000)
  • Ryan Newman (+20000)
  • Darrell Wallace Jr (+25000)

Betting Favorites for the Quaker State 400

According to most NASCAR betting sites, the following drivers are considered the odds on favorites to win the Quaker State 400 from Kentucky:

Driver Wins Top 5 Top 10 Avg Start Avg Finish DNF
Kevin Harvick 0 1 6 9.0 10.8 0
Denny Hamlin 0 4 4 12.9 14.9 2
Chase Elliott 0 1 1 14.0 15.5 0
Kyle Busch 2 7 8 6.2 4.7 0
Brad Keselowski 3 4 6 4.9 12.3 1

Kevin Harvick (+450)

Kevin Harvick is not only ahead of second place Chase Elliott in the standings by a commanding 85 point lead, but he’s also tied for the lead in the Cup Series with four. Even more impressive, Harvick has won two of the last three races in a row: first Pocono race and Indy’s race last weekend.

Harvick has four straight Top 10s and three Top 2’s over the last few weeks. He’s in championship form and has become the favorite each weekend.

At Kentucky, Harvick has yet to win in nine races. However, he does have six Top 10s and a 10.8 average finish which is 4th best among active drivers. Last year, Harvick finished 22nd at Kentucky, which broke a streak of six straight Top 10 finishes.

Harvick’s odds for Top 10 (-385), Top 5 (+100) and Top 3 (+145) have some appeal. His 66.7% Top 10 finish rate makes him a good bet to finish high this weekend. I like his Top 5 odds as well considering just how well he’s been running this season.

Denny Hamlin (+550)

If there’s one driver who’s been equally as impressive as Kevin Harvick, it’s Denny Hamlin. He’s tied with Harvick for the most wins this season, but sits 5th in the standings due to a few poor finishes like last weekend in Indy.

Things would be very different this week if Hamlin held on to win at Indy last Sunday. He was in the lead and pulling away from Harvick by a few seconds, but ended up crashing due to a flat tire. The crash resulted in a 28th finish and snapped a four race streak of finishing in the Top 4.

With that said, Hamlin still has two wins in the last five races. However, like Harvick, Hamlin hasn’t won at Kentucky in nine tries. He does have four Top 5s, four Top 10s, and a 14.9 average finish. Hamlin finished 5th last year in this race and 4th in 2017. Yet, he hasn’t been a real threat to win.

Hamlin’s odds for Top 10 (-295) are based on his success this season. He’s only finished Top 10 at Kentucky on four occasions in nine races. However, two of those came in the last three races when he finished in the Top 5 both times.

With the way Hamlin’s running, I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets a Top 5 (+120). However, a Top 3 (+175) might be too much to ask for.

Chase Elliott (+600)

Chase Elliott comes into this weekend sitting 2nd in the driver standings behind Harvick. He jumped from 4th to 2nd after an 11th place finish at Indy last weekend. Elliott only has one win on the year, but he is tied for the second most Top 5s with seven.

I’m actually a bit surprised that Elliott is ranked this high considering his past at Kentucky. In four career starts, he only has one Top 5 and one Top 10. That came in 2017 when he finished 3rd overall. He’s never led a lap at Kentucky and finished 15th here last year.

I don’t like Elliott as a betting option for Top 5 (+140) and Top 3 (+210). I think his ceiling is a Top 10 (-240). Until he can prove consistency at this track, it’s hard to pick him as a viable contender for the checkered flag. There are better options to take this weekend.

Kyle Busch (+650)

Last weekend, Kyle Busch finished 6th at Indy and moved up one spot in the driver standings to 10th overall. Busch’s season has been a dud so far and he’s currently 12th in Playoff Points with zero stage wins or checkered flags.

If you are wondering why he’s still listed high in the odds, it’s because of his past success at this track. Busch has two wins just like his teammate Truex, but he has dominated this race more than any other driver.

Currently, Busch leads all drivers in Top 5s (7), Top 10s (8), laps led (621) which is nearly 100 more than the next driver, and he has the best average finish at 4.7.

Busch’s Top 10 odds are -385 like Harvick and I think it’s pretty much a guarantee that happens. He’s finished in the Top 10 in all, but one Kentucky race. In fact, he’s finished in the Top 5 (+100) in all, but two races. I like his Top 5 odds as well.

Lastly, Busch’s Top 3 odds (+145) could be appealing as well if you don’t think he will win. Normally, I would be all over Busch to win a race like this, but his slump this year has me concerned. With that said, I still feel that the #18 car will be one of the best on Sunday.

Brad Keselowski (+800)

Keselowski comes into this race sitting 3rd in the standings having moved up two spots after finishing 4th last weekend at Indy. Keselowski also sits 3rd in Playoff Points largely due to his two wins, 11 Top 10s and three stage wins.

Speaking of Top 10s (+210), Keselowski has six of them in nine races at Kentucky. Furthermore he has four Top 5s and a 12.3 average finish which is 7th best. As mentioned in the beginning of the article, Keselowski has the most wins at Kentucky with three.

His last win came in 2016. Since then, he has an average finish of 20.1. Last year he finished 20th overall. I think Keselowski has the potential for a Top 10 and Top 5 (+150).

However, I don’t feel as confident with the #2 car finishing in the Top 3. But, that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have the potential to. I just can’t decide if he will or if his Team Penske teammate Joey Logano will.

The Best Quaker State 400 Betting Value

The following NASCAR drivers offer betting value for the Quaker State 400 due to their current betting odds, their past success at the Kentucky Speedway, and their 2020 season so far:

Driver Wins Top 5 Top 10 Avg Start Avg Finish DNF
Martin Truex Jr 2 2 5 9.7 11.1 0
Kurt Busch 1 2 6 10.8 10.8 1
Erik Jones 0 1 3 12.3 5.3 0
Matt Kenseth 1 3 6 13.8 8.4 0

Martin Truex Jr (+800)

Since winning in Martinsville six races ago, Truex has stumbled on the track and fallen from 4th to 7th in the standings. He has just two Top 10s in the last five races and finished 38th last weekend at Indy due to an early crash.

Like with his teammate Kyle Busch, Truex has also had a season filled with more bad than good. Although he has one win, he only has two Top 5s and eight Top 10s in 16 races so far.

At Kentucky, Truex has two wins which came in 2017 and 2018. He’s never finished worse than 19th which he did last year and in 2014. He has two Top 5s, five Top 10s, and an 11.1 average finish, which is 6th best among drivers.

Truex needs a solid run this weekend to regain some momentum. I believe he will be a Top 10 (-295) car and possibly crack the Top 5 (+120), but I don’t see him being a Top 3 (+175) car.

Kurt Busch (+2500)

Kurt Busch is the defending champion of this race. He edged out his brother last year to win this race and has a chance at doing it again in 2020. Busch has three Top 6 finishes in the last four races. In nine starts, he has one win, two Top 5s, six Top 10s, and a 10.8 average finish, which is 5th best among drivers.

Busch sits 11th in the standings, swapping spots with his brother after a 13th place result at Indy last weekend. He has only one Top 10 in the last five races. He had eight Top 10s in the previous 11 races and three Top 5s.

Kurt Busch has the potential to be a Top 5 (+300) car, but not a Top 3 (+500). I believe the best value with the elder Busch brother is finishing in the Top 10 (-125), which he has done in four of the last five Kentucky races.

Erik Jones (+3300)

Like with teammates Denny Hamlin and Martin Truex Jr., Erik Jones had tire issues at Indy last weekend and ended up crashing out halfway through the race. He finished 33rd and fell to 17th in the standings, which is one spot below the cutoff line.

Jones has alternated between Top 5 and bottom 30 finishes over the last four races. He’s also crashed out of two of the last four races. Since being as high as 13th after the restart, Jones has steadily fallen down in the standings.

At Kentucky, Jones has been strong in his short career. In three starts, he has three Top 7 results with a 3rd place finish last year. His 5.3 average is second best among drivers and only behind teammate Kyle Busch’s 4.7 average finish.

I believe Jones’ offers value with his Top 10 (-106), Top 5 (+350) and Top 3 (+600) finishes. I can see Jones being a Top 5 car on Sunday which would be a nice payout if you wager on that. The safe and value bet would be on Jones finishing in the Top 10.

For a young driver looking to get back on track, and having two teammates who have both won twice at this track in the past, I see Jones flying under the radar and cracking the Top 5 ala Joey Logano on a weekly basis.

Matt Kenseth (+5000)

I’m going to take a moment to share my excitement over Kenseth’s 2nd place result last week at Indy. In my betting preview for the Big Machine Sanitizer 400, I made the following comments about the now 28th place driver in the standings:

“Kenseth isn’t a threat to win at Indy this weekend or finish in the Top 3 (+1600) or Top 5 (+850). However, a Top 10 (+190) finish is not out of the question. In fact, I think there’s some value with this option considering Kenseth’s history at this track.”

I don’t want to repeat word for word what I said last week, but it’s eerily similar to Kenseth’s success at Kentucky. Yet, unlike at Indy, in eight starts, Kenseth has one win, three Top 5s, six Top 10s, and an 8.4 average finish which is 3rd best among drivers.

I’m not taking Kenseth to win this race and I’m not going to take him to finish Top 3 (+1000) or Top 5 (+600) although it’s possible. I believe Kenseth has value as a Top 10 (+130) play this weekend.

In his last three races on the season, Kenseth has an 8.1 average finish. He even led 12 laps last week in Indy and has finally started to look like the successful driver that he used to be.

The Top Longshot to Win the Quaker State 400

Ryan Newman (+20000) is my longshot of the week. And it’s largely due to his past success at this track. In nine starts, Newman has three Top 5s, four Top 10s, and a 14.4 average finish which is 10th best among drivers. Newman finished 9th last year at Kentucky and even led 15 laps.

This season has been rough for Newman with a crash and only has one Top 10 on the year. He finished 34th last weekend at Indy due to another crash. If you remove his four lowest finishes, Newman is a Top 15 car weekly. In 16 races, he has an 18.8 average finish.

Newman’s Top 5 (+1100) and Top 3 odds (+2500) are certainly appealing in regards to potential payoffs. However, it’s his Top 10 (+250) odds that offer the best value.

It will take a lot of things to go Newman’s way to finish in the Top 5 on Sunday, but a Top 10 finish is not farfetched. His four Top 10s at this track are tied with Denny Hamlin for the 4th most. I see value in a Top 10 wager on Newman. Keep in mind, all of his betting options are risky.

Quaker State 400 Checkered Flag

At the 1.5 mile long tracks, there are 10 drivers or so that race well at this distance. Team Penske’s trio, Joe Gibbs Racing quartet, Kevin Harvick, Kurt Busch and Matt Kenseth all have realistic shots at Top 10 finishes this weekend.

Narrowing it down further, I like Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, Brad Keselowski, Martin Truex. Jr, and Erik Jones to finish in the Top 5. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if Denny Hamlin bumps a JGR teammate and Joey Logano bumps teammate Keselowski out of the Top 5.

With that said, I think this race comes down to Harvick, Busch, and Keselowski. It’s hard counting out Harvick, but can he really win three races in a row?

I want to go with Kyle Busch, but he’s burned me at least three times this year so far. Keselowski has also burned me as well. I’ve counted him out in a race and ended up winning it. Also, I have a hard time deciding between Keselowski and Joey Logano.

Ok, this is it! If Kyle Busch doesn’t win this weekend, I’m done picking him for the rest of the year. If you have already jumped off the #18 car this season I don’t blame you. If that’s the case then go with Team Penske or Harvick.

For me, I’m going to play with fire one more time and take Kyle Busch to get his first win of the year. Watch, this will be the weekend that Truex is the dominant JGR car just to irritate me.

My Top 5 Drivers

  • Kevin Harvick
  • Kyle Busch
  • Brad Keselowski
  • Martin Truex Jr.
  • Erik Jones

Quaker State 400 Prop Bets

The following NASCAR prop bets are courtesy of DraftKings:

Car Number of Race Winner

  • Even (-200)
  • Odd (+150)

Four of my Top five drivers have racecars with even numbers: Keselowski (2), Harvick (4), Busch (18), and Jones (20). Additionally, drivers like Logano (22) and Kenseth (42) are also even numbered cars with potential.

Although there’s no value with the “even” betting option, it’s the smart play for this weekend.

Car Number of Race Winner –Even (-200)

Car Number of Race Winner

  • Over 11.5 (-125)
  • Under 11.5 (-105)

Of my Top 5 drivers, three have car numbers above 11.5: Busch, Truex and Jones. Logano and Kenseth are also over 11.5.

One strategy is that you can hedge your bets here and take the Under 11.5 with Harvick, Hamlin and Keselowski while still going with Kyle Busch to win this race.

With decent value for each betting option, I’m going to take the Over.

Car Number of Race Winner –Over 11.5 (-125)

Manufacturer of Race Winner

  • Ford (+130)
  • Toyota (+160)
  • Chevrolet (+250)

Ford is the favorite this weekend due to Kevin Harvick being the race favorite and the best driver in 2020. Ford has also won two of the nine Kentucky races due to Keselowski. Chevy is the longshot at +250 odds, but they’re the reigning champs.

Toyota has won five of the nine races with Busch, Kenseth and Truex. All four of JGR’s drivers should finish in the Top 10 with at least two of them vying for the checkered flag. I like Toyota this weekend and they offer solid value at +160 odds.

Manufacturer of Race Winner –Toyota (+160)

Team of Race Winner

  • Joe Gibbs Racing (+155)
  • Team Penske (+300)
  • Stewart-Haas Racing (+325)
  • Hendrick Motor Sports (+400)
  • Chip Ganassi Racing (+1300)
  • Any Other Team (+1800)
  • Richard Childress racing (+4000)
  • Roush Fenway Racing (+8000)
  • JTG Daughtery Racing (+12500)

The winner of this race will come from either Joe Gibbs Racing (+155), Team Penske (+300), or Stewart-Haas Racing (+325).Team Penske offers the best value with Keselowski and Logano being legitimate options this weekend. Plus, you can’t count out Ryan Blaney with how well he’s racing this year. Stewart-Haas is the longshot with Harvick, but he’s a threat to win most weekends.

However, as stated above, I’m taking Kyle Busch to win this weekend. Yet, his teammates at Joe Gibbs Racing (Hamlin, Truex, Jones) are all potential race winners. JGR is the betting option for this wager.

Team of Race Winner –Joe Gibbs Racing (+155)

Quaker State 400 Betting Recap

Betting Value:

  • Martin Truex Jr (+800)
  • Kurt Busch (+2500)
  • Erik Jones (+3300)
  • Matt Kenseth (+5000)

Winner

  • Kyle Busch (+650)

Longshot

  • Ryan Newman (+20000)
Rick Rockwell

As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at GamblingSites.org to become the self-professed "King of the Blog" in his first year with the site. ...

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