NASCAR Preview: 2020 Coca-Cola 600 Odds, Picks and Info

It’s another quick turnaround from Wednesday’s race at Darlington to the traditional Memorial Day race weekend and the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. As if to make things spicy, the driver that wrecked Chase Elliott on Wednesday night at Darlington is coming in as the favorite.

Kyle Busch comes in at +350 with teammate Martin Truex Jr following close behind at +470.

You can read up on the 2020 Toyota 500 at Darlington in my last article. I fared pretty well with three of my drivers finishing in the top-ten.


Toyota 500 at Darlington Raceway | EXTENDED HIGHLIGHTS | 5/20/20 | Motorsports on NBC


The two Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) drivers have racked up wins in four of the last six races at Charlotte with Truex winning three of those. Busch finished second, after wrecking Elliott, Wednesday night at Darlington while Truex finished tenth.

Darlington may be factored into the way oddsmakers are looking at the 600, but it’s a good bet they’re leaning on past trends at the track. If you do that, the Busch and Truex can’t be argued with.

Here’s how the top-five favorites round out for the Coca-Cola 600 (complete odds below):

Kyle Busch                          +350

Martin Truex Jr.                   +470

Joey Logano                       +700

Kevin Harvick                      +800

Chase Elliott                        +950

2020 Coca-Cola 600 Info

Date: May 24th, 2020

Track: Charlotte Motor Speedway, Charlotte, North Carolina

Type: 1.5-mile superspeedway

Banking: Turns: 24°, Straights: 5°

Race Distance: 400 laps

Defending Track Winner: Martin Truex Jr.

TV/Radio: Fox / MRN

Start Time: 6:00 PM Eastern

The race will once again be held without fans in the stands and will switch from FOX to Fox Sports One/FS1.

Best Bets for the 2020 Coca-Cola 600

Kyle Busch +350

If you’ve read any of my articles this season you may know that I’ve not been real keen on Kyle Busch.

It has nothing to do with attitude or wrecking other drivers. It’s been more about the lack of results the No. 18 team has posted this season following winning the Championship last year.

Busch has won at Charlotte, and he drove from the back to the front several times in both races at Darlington. But, last Wednesday under the lights, JGR drivers started to come on strong.

The 600 transfers from early evening to night time racing and Kyle Busch should be one of the cars fighting for the win.


Kevin Harvick +800

Kevin Harvick was one of my picks this past Wednesday, and I’m sticking with him this weekend.

Harvick already has a win on the season and has finished every race so far this season with a top-ten run. He also has three Cup Series wins at Charlotte.

One note on that, all of those wins came when he piloted a Chevrolet, but he’s been strong in his Stewart – Haas Racing Ford. Look for Harvick to be a factor.

Chase Elliott +950

This may be a revenge pick simply because I love “feuds” in NASCAR.

Kyle Busch wrecked Elliott towards the end of Wednesday’s race as Elliott was making a move for the win. Busch did apologize, and there has not been much trash talk coming out of the Elliott camp. So the feud may be more alive on sports talk radio.

Now, push all of that aside. Elliott enters the race at +950 with four top-ten Cup Series finishes at Charlotte. It’s not been his best track, but he’s never seemed to have as strong of cars as he does this season.

Others I like to Win the Coca-Cola 600

Denny Hamlin and Brad Keselowski: Denny Hamlin won last Wednesday at Darlington and has been strong all season long. You just can’t ignore him. The same goes for Brad Keselowski. You can’t count either of these drivers out this weekend at Charlotte for the Coca-Cola 600.

2020 Coca-Cola 600 Odds

Kyle Busch                           +350

Martin Truex Jr.                    +470

Joey Logano                        +700

Kevin Harvick                       +800

Chase Elliott                        +950

Denny Hamlin                      +1,100

Alex Bowman                      +1,300

Brad Keselowski                 +1,300

Jimmie Johnson                 +1,600

Clint Bowyer                       +2,500

Kurt Busch                          +2,800

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.           +2,800

Ryan Blaney                      +2,800

Aric Almirola                      +3,200

Austin Dillon                      +3,200

Erik Jones                         +3,600

William Byron                    +4,200

Matt Kenseth                     +4,500

Ryan Newman                  +4,500

Chris Buescher                 +5,000

Matt Di Benedetto             +5,000

Tyler Reddick                     +6,900

Cole Custer                       +12,500

Christopher Bell                +15,000

John H. Nemechek           +15,000

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.          +15,000

Daniel Suarez                   +20000

Darrell Wallace Jr.            +25000

About the Author

Kent Whitaker is an award-winning author, culinary writer and sports writer. Whitaker's books range from BBQ, Grilling, Tailgating and additional culinary titles to WWII history books, books about NASCAR and racing and titles for kids.

Whitaker, known as “the Deck Chef,” has a culinary, history and journalism background. He credits this for his cookbook writing style. “My books are people based. I interview, gather recipes from real people and sources – and combine the recipes with back-stories. My cookbooks are slices of culinary history.”

Whitaker can also be found on TV, Radio, Print, and as a celebrity spokesperson. He has appeared on radio and TV including Food Network. He’s the Emeril Live Barbecue Contest winner and columnist for the National Barbecue News.

Whitaker has covered NASCAR, IndyCar, ARCA Racing, The NFL, SEC Football, Professional Golf and more. His books include:

·      Great American Grilling – Ultimate Backyard Barbecue and Tailgating

·      The Gulf Coast Seafood Cookbook

·      Smoke in the Mountains - The Art of Appalachian Barbecue

·      Checkered Flag Cooking - Tailgating Stock Car Racing

·      The Hometown Cookbook Series; The Tennessee Hometown Cookbook, as well as Georgia, Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana, South Carolina, West Virginia, Alabama, and Florida.

·      The USS Alabama - The History of the Mighty A

·      Talladega Superspeedway

·      Bullets and Bread - Feeding the Greats and Grunts of WWII

·      Big Mo's Tennis Ball Hunt

·       Why Are the Mountains Smokey?

Kent has worked with several brands as spokesperson. Companies include Check Mark, ALPO, TimberTech, Vermont Castings, Pabst Blue Ribbon, E.H. Campbell Trading, Big Show Foods, and others. Whitaker, and his wife Allyson, hosted a NASCAR and racing themed show on ESPN Radio for several years. That show has morphed into a weekly short format tailgate show heard on over 50 affiliates nationwide.

Kent is also a member of the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary and severed on the National Staff as an AUXCHEF/AUX Food Service Specialist and National Branch Chief.

Kent and his wife Allyson live in Tennessee and have one ARMY Strong son, Macee. You can visit him online at and Twitter/Instagram @thekentwhitaker.