|3-time All-Star race winner Jimmie Johnson is 5/1 this week|
If it weren't for Busch's terrible All-Star race history, he would have been closer to a 4-to-1 favorite due to his dominance on big-horsepower tracks this season. Busch won last month at Charlotte's sister track, Texas Motor Speedway, a high-banked 1.5-mile oval that closely resembles Charlotte. Busch also won at Fontana's two-mile track, which is wider and flatter than Charlotte, but allows drivers to generate the same type of power.
On the negative side for Busch are four DNFs in seven career All-Star events. In the three races he actually finished, he ended up in the top five twice. One of those DNFs was a battle he and his brother, Kurt, got into that ruined both of their days. They didn't speak to each other until Thanksgiving – six months later – after their grandmother intervened.
The younger Busch is going to be tough to beat Saturday night, but the most likely candidate to do so is teammate Matt Kenseth, who is listed at 6-to-1 odds. Kenseth has three first-place finishes on the season, all of which came at tracks that require big power, much like Busch's victories. Kenseth won at the 1.5-mile tracks at Las Vegas and Kansas, and then took the checkers last week on Darlington's 1.336-mile layout.
Kenseth, the 2004 All-Star race winner, has a 6.3 average finish in 12 career All-Star races, the best average among all active drivers, just ahead of Johnson's 6.6 average. Kenseth is also a two-time point-race winner at Charlotte, the latest victory coming in 2011. Incidentally, Kenseth became eligible for his first All-Star race after winning his first career race as a rookie in the 2000 Coca-Cola 600.
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