2019 NASCAR All-Star Race Preview, Betting Odds, and Prediction
by Kent Whitaker Scores & Statson
The 2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series All-Star race is this weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The event has been held annually since 1985 and has often been termed “boring” due to long green-flag runs. But, NASCAR changed things up with stages, forced pitstops and additional tweaks that yielded one of the most exciting All-Star races in a long time.
This year the favored two drivers are the ones who seem to have topped the odds list heading into every race weekend. Kyle Busch is at +450 with Brad Keselowski close behind at +550. To understand the odds for the 2019 All-Star event you only have to look at how “all-stars” are named.
The field is made up of all active race winners from 2018 as well as winners in the 2019 season to date. Additionally, all NASCAR Cup Series Champions that raced a full schedule last season and former All-Star race winners that are still active. Now, do the math… that’s not too many people.
So, additional slots are filled by active drivers that can race their way in during a qualifying race. Not only does this build the field, it gets every active team some track time under the lights and in front of a National TV audience. Talk about a nice way to keep car sponsors and advertisers happy!
Here’s how the favored driver break down with manufacture. You may notice that Chevrolet is not getting too much love from oddsmakers. For now, it’s Toyota and Ford drivers riding the top of the list according to oddsmakers at intertops.
Kyle Busch +450 Toyota
Brad Keselowski +550 Ford
Kevin Harvick +600 Ford
Joey Logano +700 Ford
Chase Elliott +700 Chevrolet
The Chevrolet camp has one representative in the form Chase Elliott who rolls in at +400 with Joey Logano. The last time Chevy won the All-Star race was in 2014 when Jamie McMurray took home the honors and he’s since retired.
Past All-Star Winners
Speaking of retired All-Star race winners, Carl Edwards won the event in 2011 and he’s been out of racing for several seasons while Tony Stewart retired as a driver to focus on being a team owner. When Kurt Busch won the race he was piloting a Dodge and that manufacture dropped out of NASCAR after the 2012 season.
2009 Tony Stewart Chevrolet
2010 Kurt Busch Dodge
2011 Carl Edwards Ford
2012 Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet
2013 Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet
2014 Jamie McMurray Chevrolet
2015 Denny Hamlin Toyota
2016 Joey Logano Ford
2017 Kyle Busch Toyota
2018 Kevin Harvick Ford
2019 NASCAR All-Star Prediction
The list above makes it pretty clear when picking drivers for winning a repeat All-Star race. Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick, and Joey Logano are givens. They will be up front. Now, factor in the power that Chevrolet has shown over the last few weeks. That brings in drivers such as Elliott and possible Austin Dillon… if he can stay clean.
The deciding factor will be which car, as in brand, has short run power and which of their drivers can work together. When you look at the race in those terms than the two teams that jump to the top are Stewart – Haas Racing and Team Penske. And, those are both Ford associated teams.
Stewart – Haas has Harvick, Clint Bowyer, and Aric Almirola locked into the event. The fourth SHR driver is Daniel Suarez and he can possibly race his way into the main event. Then there are the three Team Penske drivers. Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano, and Ryan Blaney are all locked in. That means there will be a whole bunch of Ford’s running near the front.
It will take some effort, and no mistakes in the pits, to help propel Toyota and Chevrolet to the checkered flag. Toyota’s best shot may be in the form of Martin Truex Jr if Kyle Busch has another off weekend. As for Chevrolet – you can’t put any other Chevy driver in the field in front of Elliott. He has a win this season, had a string of wins last season, and has been on verge of heading to Victory lane a few times over the course of the last few races… at least he’s been in the hunt.
The other Chevrolet driver that has been showing signs of life in 2019 is Elliotts teammate Alex Bowman who is piloting the No. 88 car since Dale Earnhardt Jr retired. But, Bowman is not locked into the main event. But if he can race his way in then he has a chance to win the 2019 NASCAR All-Star Race even though he’s not listed in the odds… yet. He may be listed as a favorite following the qualifiers.