Monday, October 31, 2016

Jimmie Johnson wins for ninth time at Martinsville

Jimmie Johnson is set well to win his seventh Sprint Cup title.

Martinsville Goody's Fast relief 500 Results


Martinsville Race Facts:
* Jimmie Johnson (C) won the 68th Annual Goody's Fast Relief 500, his 79th victory in 540 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
* This is his fourth victory and 15th top-10 finish in 2016.
* This is his ninth victory and 24th top-10 finish in 30 races at Martinsville Speedway.
* Brad Keselowski (second) posted his eighth top-10 finish in 14 races at Martinsville Speedway. It is his 22nd top-10 finish in 2016.
* Denny Hamlin (C) (third) posted his 17th top-10 finish in 22 races at Martinsville Speedway.
* Chase Elliott (12th) was the highest finishing rookie.
* Jimmie Johnson (C) leads the point standings by 5 points over Denny Hamlin (C).

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Final Martinsville Betting Notes & Driver Ratings

Kyle Busch goes for season sweep.
Kyle Larson produced the fastest lap during Saturday’s final practice session at Martinsville Speedway in preparation for Sunday’s Goody’s Fast Relief 500.

Larson gained the top speed of 96.08 mph on his fourth of 61 laps turned on the half-mile paper clip layout, but what was more impressive was he had the best 10-consecutive lap average during long-run race simulations.

Read More Here.....Final Betting Notes


Final Martinsville Driver Ratings - LVRJ

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

NASCAR Sprint Cup Notes: Martinsville Goody's Fast Relief 500

Denny Hamlin is a 5/1 co-favorite to win at Martinsville Sunday.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Next Race: Goody’s Fast Relief 500
The Place: Martinsville Speedway
The Date: Sunday, Oct. 30
The Time: 1 p.m. ET
TV: NBCSN, 12:30 p.m. ET
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Distance: 263 miles (500 laps)

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series

Six-Time Can Change Nickname To Seven-Time

Known as “Six-time” for his six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championships, Jimmie Johnson is four races away from potentially tying NASCAR Hall of Famers Dale Earnhardt and Richard Petty with a record seventh premier series title.

Johnson continues his quest for crown No. 7 in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Round of 8 opener – Sunday’s Goody’s Fast Relief 500 at Martinsville Speedway.

Johnson leads all full-time active drivers with eight wins at Martinsville. Jeff Gordon, who is racing in Sunday’s event boasts nine.

In 29 career starts at Martinsville, Johnson owns eight wins, 18 top fives, 23 top 10s and an average finish of 7.5. His average running position (8.0) and driver rating 117.8 rank second among active drivers at the .526-mile track.

The Californian is the last driver to win consecutive races at Martinsville (fall 2012/spring 2013).

Busch Goes For Martinsville Sweep

Kyle Busch will attempt to clock the competition at Martinsville when he goes for a season sweep of “The Paperclip.”

The No. 18 Toyota wheelman earned his first career victory at the .526-mile track in April and will try to become the first driver to sweep a venue this season. More importantly, he’ll try to earn a spot in the Championship 4 as he pursues his second consecutive NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship.

Busch led 352 of 500 laps in the April race and registered a driver rating of 148.2 on his way to Victory Lane.

For his career, Busch claims one win, 10 top fives, 11 top 10s and a 14.5 average finish in 22 starts at Martinsville.

Pride Of Virginia: Hamlin Hopes To Add Another Win In Home State

Chesterfield, Virginia’s Denny Hamlin hopes to capture his sixth victory at Martinsville Speedway this weekend and the ninth in his hometown state (he also owns three victories at Richmond).

After beating Kurt Busch to the stripe by .006 seconds (appx. two feet) in last Sunday’s Hellman’s 500 at Talladega Superspeedway to earn the final spot in the Round of 8, Hamlin can make the Championship 4 with a win at Martinsville.

In 21 starts at “NASCAR’s Wrigley Field,” Hamlin claims five wins, 11 top fives and 16 top 10s. His 9.5 average finish, 9.7 average running position and 108.1 driver rating all rank third-best among active drivers at Martinsville.

Hamlin is the winningest Virginian in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series history with 29 victories. The list of drivers from the Old Dominion State includes NASCAR Hall of Famers Joe Weatherly, Curtis Turner, Glen Wood and Wendell Scott, as well as former NASCAR iron man Ricky Rudd.

Martinsville Spoilers

With only eight drivers left in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, the number of competitors who can spoil a bid for the Chase-eligible drivers gets larger. Still, the remaining Chase drivers have accounted for 54.8 percent of the wins among active drivers at Martinsville Speedway (Jimmie Johnson, 9 wins; Denny Hamlin, 5 wins; Kurt Busch, 2 wins and Kevin Harvick, 1 win). Among active full-time drivers, the win percentage increases to 77.2 percent. The non-Chase drivers starting in Sunday’s Goody’s Fast Relief 500, who have won at Martinsville are Jeff Gordon (9 wins), Tony Stewart (3) and Ryan Newman (1).

And Then There Were 8
: Combined Wins, Average Finishes And Driver Ratings Of Chase Drivers At Round Of 8 Tracks

Below are the combined wins, average finish and driver ratings at the three Round of 8 tracks – Martinsville Speedway, Texas Motor Speedway and Phoenix International Raceway:

Jimmie Johnson – 18 wins, 7.9 avg. finish, 112.5 driver rating
Kevin Harvick – Nine wins, 12.9 avg. finish, 98.6 driver rating
Denny Hamlin – Eight wins, 10.9 avg. finish, 97.9 driver rating
Carl Edwards – Five wins, 13.8 avg. finish, 93.2 driver rating
Kyle Busch – Four wins, 13.3 avg. finish, 100.0 driver rating
Kurt Busch – Four wins, 16.8 avg. finish, 89.1 driver rating
Matt Kenseth – Three wins, 13.7 avg. finish, 93.3 driver rating
Joey Logano – One win, 15.4 avg. finish, 86.5 driver rating

Gordon’s Last Ride?
Sunday’s Goody’s Fast Relief 500 at Martinsville Speedway is likely Jeff Gordon’s last NASCAR race ever.

If it is Gordon’s last race, there is a good chance he goes out with a strong finish, if not a victory. The four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion is the defending winner at Martinsville and has more wins (nine), top fives (29), top 10s (37) and laps led (3,779) there than he does at any other track. Another top-five finish would tie him with Richard Petty for the track record in that category, while a top-10 finish would break his tie with Petty for the track record in that statistic. If Gordon racks up another 72 laps led at Martinsville, he will surpass Petty for first in laps led there.

Gordon leads active drivers at Martinsville in not only wins, top fives and top 10s, but also average finish (6.8) and driver rating (119.5).

If Gordon leads 64 laps on Sunday, he will become only the sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver all-time to lead 25,000 or more laps, joining NASCAR Hall of Famers Petty, Cale Yarborough, Bobby Allison, Dale Earnhardt and David Pearson.

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Etc.

At The Paperclip, It’s Good To Be Up Front – The Coors Light Pole is the most proficient starting spot in the field at Martinsville, producing more wins (21) than any other starting position. Only seven of the 135 races (5.2%) at the southern Virginia track have been won from a starting position outside the top 20 – two of these occurred in 2015 (Denny Hamlin, spring; Jeff Gordon, fall). Ninety-seven of the 135 races (71.9%) have been won from a top-10 starting position. Chaser Kurt Busch holds the Martinsville record for lowest starting position by a race winner – 36th in fall of 2002….

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Patriots loved by Las Vegas bettors: Sports Books getting beat

How high do you make spread for Patriots with Tom Brady?
Las Vegas sports books had mixed results during NFL Week 7 action Sunday where the underdogs ruled the day going 8-4-1 ATS while seven of them winning outright. Some books showed a small win, or were break even while others ended up small losers on the day. The one game most bet shops were unified with was taking a big loss when the Patriots (-7.5) won at Pittsburgh, 27-16.

"We came out on the short end today,' said Westgate SuperBook VP Jay Kornegay. "It was kind of odd the way things unfolded. A lot of the games were fairly balanced and we didn't have any real big decisions, but the few we did have we lost with. We lost with the Browns and Raiders and the really big one was us needing the Steelers."

The Patriots have now covered three straight in dominating fashion since Tom Brady returned in Week 5. Their excellence is becoming a thorn in the books side.

"The Patriots are now 6-1 against-the-spread," said Station Casinos sports book director Jason McCormick. "And the players cash every week with them."

The other team that has the bookmakers scratching their heads through the first seven weeks is the Browns, who lost 31-17 at Cincinnati (-11.5).

Read More Here....Vegasinsider.com

Tenth Grandfather Clock Waiting for Retired Jeff Gordon?

Jeff Gordon is 12/1 to win at Martinsville.
Jeff Gordon on returning to Martinsville
“You kind of like to leave a place with a win and I definitely don’t want to mess that up, but it’s also a track that I like and feel confident at. I don’t see why we couldn’t go there and contend for a win. We won there last year and I don’t think a lot has changed. The question is, ‘Were we the best car there?’ To me, I think we’d have to be a little bit better than we were last year to be in that position.”

Jeff Gordon is scheduled to be available to members of the media on Friday, Oct. 28, at 1:30 p.m. local time in the media center at Martinsville Speedway.

GORDON’S FINAL RACE 2.0: Sunday will mark four-time champion Gordon’s final scheduled NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start. Gordon will be driving the blue-and-silver No. 88 Nationwide Chevrolet SS this weekend. His career began on Nov. 15, 1992, at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Richard Petty’s final start. From 1992 through 2015, Gordon made 797 consecutive starts and racked up 93 wins, 325 top-five and 475 top-10 finishes in addition to his four championships. This weekend’s race at Martinsville Speedway will be his eighth race filling in for Dale Earnhardt Jr. in 2016. Earnhardt is out for the remainder of the season as he continues to recover from a concussion.

AT MARTINSVILLE: On Nov. 1, 2015, Gordon led the final 22 laps at Martinsville Speedway en route to his ninth win at the Virginia short track and his 93rd career Cup victory. The defending race winner leads all active Cup drivers in wins (nine, third on the all-time list), poles (seven, second on the all-time list), top-five finishes (29), and laps led (3,779, second on the all-time list). He is tied with Richard Petty for the most top-10 Cup finishes of all time with 37, and holds the all-time record for lead-lap finishes (38) and for the least DNFs, having been running at the finish in every single one of his 46 races at the half-mile paperclip.

GORDON AT CHEVY STAGE: Gordon is scheduled to visit the Team Chevy stage at Martinsville on Sunday at 10:30 a.m. for a Q&A session.

EARNHARDT HELPS ANNOUNCE MARTINSVILLE LIGHTS: Earnhardt traveled to Martinsville Speedway on Wednesday, Oct. 12, for his second Victory Tour appearance and assisted the track in announcing that the half-mile facility will be installing lights. “Light Up Martinsville” is a $5 million project, providing Martinsville Speedway with the first LED lights among major motorsports facilities. Installation will begin shortly following this year’s Goody’s Fast Relief 500 on Oct. 30 and is expected to be completed by January 2017. Click here for a photo gallery from the event.

EARNHARDT TRACK APPEARANCES: Fans will have an opportunity to see Earnhardt on Sunday. The 42-year-old will be participating in a Q&A session on behalf of Martinsville Speedway at 10:45 a.m. ET in the Plaza as part of the speedway's Green Flag Experience.

TELEVISION, TAKE TWO: After making his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series broadcasting debut on NBCSN last Sunday at Talladega, Earnhardt will again join the NASCAR on NBC group in the booth during a portion of this Sunday’s race in Martinsville. Earlier this year, he made his first foray into the broadcast booth at the NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Michigan International Speedway in June. Check out the social recap from his time in the booth at Talladega.

DEER EARNHARDT JR.: In case you missed it, Mountain Dew unveiled a new TV commercial featuring Earnhardt last week. The spot has Earnhardt lending his voice to a talking deer head mounted on the wall of a convenience store, pranking customers as they visit the beverage coolers. Mountain Dew is also currently running a sweepstakes to give DEW Nation a chance to take it outside win a Montana getaway and other prizes through purchase of a specially-marked camo DEW. Enter to win before the sweepstakes ends on Oct. 31 by texting “WILDCALLING” to 50563 or enter at MountainDew.com/TakeItOutside. No purchase necessary to enter the sweepstakes. Each entry has a chance to win the grand prize - a trip for two to The Ranch at Rock Creek in Montana - plus 1 of 10,000 instant win prizes.

 
 

2016 Season

  • 7 starts
  • 0 wins
  • 0 pole positions
  • 0 top-five finishes
  • 1 top-10 finish
  • 7 laps led
 
 

Career

  • 804 starts
  • 93 wins
  • 81 pole positions
  • 325 top-five finishes
  • 476 top-10 finishes
  • 24,936 laps led
 
 

Track Career 

  • 46 starts
  • 9 wins
  • 7 pole positions
  • 29 top-five finishes
  • 37 top-10 finishes
  • 3,779 laps led
 

Ninth Martinsville win, Miami invite in store for Jimmie Johnson?

Jimmie Johnson is 5/1 co-favorite to win at Martinsville.
Jimmie Johnson on racing at Martinsville
“Martinsville has been such a great racetrack for us in the past but the last few trips there we have been an OK car – not a dominant car. We would like to become a dominant car again and use that to cash our ticket to Homestead-Miami early in this round. We’ve had a lot of success there because Martinsville is one of those consistent tracks that doesn’t change too much. I know my Lowe’s team is working hard in the shop this week on our Chevy – it’s an important race for sure.”

Jimmie Johnson will be in the media center at Martinsville Speedway at 10:15am local time on Friday, Oct. 28.

ROUND OF 8: Jimmie Johnson is now in the Round of 8 in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup and is seeded second in the point standings. Johnson’s performance at Martinsville Speedway, Texas Motor Speedway and Phoenix International Raceway will determine if he will be in the final four at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Nov. 22 and will be able to compete for his seventh championship.

ROUND PERFORMANCE: The Round of 8 tracks have been kind to the driver of the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet in the past. At Martinsville, Johnson has eight wins, 18 top-five and 23 top-10 finishes; at Texas Motor Speedway Johnson has six wins, 14 top-five and 20 top-10 finishes; and at Phoenix, Johnson has four wins, 15 top-five and 19 top-10 finishes.

MASTERING THE PAPERCLIP: Forty-nine different Sprint Cup drivers have won at Martinsville Speedway, led by Richard Petty with 15 victories. Johnson has the second-most wins among active drivers with eight victories. He is second to teammate Gordon, who has nine wins. He is also the most recent driver to win consecutive races (fall 2012 and spring 2013) at Martinsville.

RACKING UP STATS : Johnson has many accolades at Martinsville Speedway. According to NASCAR’s loop data, Johnson has the second-best driver rating of 117.8 among active drivers. Across his eight wins at the paperclip-shaped track, Johnson has led a total of 2,746 laps.

NBC SUPERSTORE APPERANCE: When in Los Angeles in September, Johnson dropped by NBC Studios and filmed a cameo for NBC’s popular show “Superstore.” The primetime show is a hilarious workplace comedy featuring a unique family of employees at a supersized megastore. The show featuring Johnson’s appearance will air Nov. 3 at 8 p.m. ET.

BLAZE AND THE MONSTER MACHINES: Nickelodeon’s popular animated preschool and STEM-based series “Blaze and the Monster Machines” will feature Johnson in an upcoming race car-themed episode, along with Hendrick Motorsports teammates Kahne and Elliott. Johnson is featured as “Dash,” a car that is fun, friendly, fast and the ultimate racing buddy for Blaze. The episode titled“The Hundred Mile Race” will air on Nick Jr. Nov. 4 at 1:30 p.m. ET.

 

2016 Season

  • 2nd in standings
  • 32 starts
  • 3 wins
  • 1 pole position
  • 9 top-five finishes
  • 14 top-10 finishes
  • 629 laps led
 
 

Career

  • 539 starts
  • 78 wins
  • 35 pole positions
  • 216 top-five finishes
  • 328 top-10 finishes
  • 18,338 laps led
 
 

Track Career 

  • 29 starts
  • 8 wins
  • 3 pole positions
  • 18 top-five finishes
  • 23 top-10 finishes
  • 2,746 laps led
 

Kyle Busch goes for Martinsville sweep

Kyle Busch is 5/1 co-favorite this week at Martinsville.
HUNTERSVILLE, North Carolina (Oct. 24, 2016) –Halloween is here and, as has been typical for Kyle Busch the No. 18 M&M’S Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR), the colorful candy maker will go racing with a special Halloween scheme Sunday afternoon at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway to celebrate Halloween the following day.

The spooky-looking M&M’S scheme will race Sunday at a place that used to challenge Busch earlier in his career and early on in his now almost nine-year tenure with JGR. In fact, Busch finished outside the top-10 in three out of his first four races with JGR in 2008 and 2009. By contrast, Busch has scored four top-five finishes in his last seven starts there, with his worst finish being 15th.

At the pinnacle of recent Martinsville success for Busch and the M&M’s team is the defending Sprint Cup champion’s first career win at the paperclip-shaped oval this past in April. Not only did he bring home his first Martinsville clock, he did it in dominating fashion, leading five times for a race-high 352 laps en route to victory lane.

With just four races left in the season, and with the series kicking off the Round of 8 of the 2016 Chase for the Sprint Cup playoffs at Martinsville this weekend, Busch knows a repeat performance from April could go a long way in his efforts to repeating as Sprint Cup champion for the M&M’S team. If Busch were to win Sunday at Martinsville, or at any of the following two events, he would guarantee a spot as one of the four drivers advancing to the winner-take-all finale Nov. 20 at Homestead-Miami Speedway that will decide this year’s Sprint Cup champion.

All season long, Busch and his M&M’S Halloween team have not been ones to back down from a challenge. He was able to slip through the first two playoff rounds, most recently avoiding major trouble at Sunday’s Round of 12 elimination race at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway. Now that he’s made it to the final eight, Busch feels he has just as good a shot as anyone to vie for his second Sprint Cup title.

So as the season heads into the homestretch, Busch and the M&M’S Halloween team know that when it comes to being championship eligible at Homestead, they’ll take the confidence built during the last several years at Martinsville. Since he has already conquered the .526-mile short track in southern Virginia once this year, Martinsville is not so spooky to Busch anymore.

KYLE BUSCH, Driver of the No. 18 M&M’S Halloween Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing:

How do you feel about the race this week at Martinsville?

“We’ve run well the last couple of times at Martinsville and we’re definitely pumped about getting back there. I’m hoping we can have a really good car there again this time around like we did last time. We led a lot of laps and we were really fast. Hoping that some of those things we were able to push through there at Martinsville we’ll be able to do this time around with our M&M’s Halloween Camry.”

Are you looking forward to the next round?
“I look forward to the next round – we’ve got Martinsville, we’ve got Texas and we’ve got Phoenix. Those are all three really strong tracks for us. Honestly, I don’t know that there are tracks on the schedule that are weak points for us unless, obviously, there are crapshoot type races like Talladega or Daytona. We lived through Talladega last weekend, so we get to move on.”

What is the key to you getting a win at Martinsville?
“It’s a tough racetrack and, any time you come in the pits and make an adjustment on your car, you certainly hope it goes the right way, or you make enough of it, or you don’t make too much of an adjustment. The last run can be tricky, too, because you can be coming off a 50-lap run on right-side tires and take four and you’ve only got 30 (laps) to go, or you could have 80 to go and you know you have to manage that run all the way to the end.”

Your racecar is sporting the special M&M’s Halloween paint scheme this week. What was your favorite Halloween costume that you wore as a kid?
“Actually, one year I went as a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. I think that was my favorite costume as a kid. I was Michelangelo and I even had the fake nunchuk. One year, I was a football player and, one year, I even dressed up as Jeff Gordon since he was my favorite racecar driver when I was a kid.”

Growing up in Las Vegas, what do you remember about Halloween and trick-or-treating?

“It was always cold in Las Vegas during Halloween, even though it can be really hot most of the year. I guess the biggest memory was going out to everyone’s house and trick-or-treating and hanging out with friends as a group. Sometimes, people wouldn’t be home, so they had a bucket out and you would reach in and grab whatever you wanted out of the bucket. It was all about how much candy you could collect, not necessarily about how much you would eat when you got home.”

- True Speed Communication for M&M’s Racing/Joe Gibbs Racing

Matt Kenseth close to first Martinsville win

Matt Kenseth is 8/1 to win at Martinsville. 
Matt Kenseth / No. 20 Dollar General Toyota Preview
Goody’s Fast Relief 500 at Martinsville Speedway

No. 20 Dollar General Toyota News and Notes:


JOE GIBBS RACING AT MARTINSVILLE: Joe Gibbs Racing has 110 Sprint Cup Series starts at Martinsville Speedway earning a total of nine wins, 37 top-five, 58 top-ten finishes, and eight poles. The organization also has led for a total of 3,910 laps and has an average finish of 13.2 at the 0.526-mile short track.
KENSETH BY THE NUMBERS: In 33 Sprint Cup Series starts at Martinsville, Kenseth has completed 16,344 of 16,534 laps (98.9 percent). Kenseth has led for a total of 465 laps and has earned five top-five and 12 top-ten finishes at the half-mile track. A runner-up finish is Kenseth’s career best finish at Martinsville, which he earned in April 2002 and October 2013.
DOLLAR GENERAL PARTNER SUPPORT: Dollar General would like to thank vendor partners Charmin, Cheez-It, Coca-Cola, Dairy Pure, Eckrich, Eveready, First Quality, Gain, Glad, Goody’s, Hanes, IAMS, Kellogg’s, Listerine, Motrin, Powerade, Pringles, Reese’s, Rexall, Scrubbing Bubbles, TruMoo, and Zyrtec for their support of the DG Racing program.
RACE INFO: The Goody’s Fast Relief 500 at Martinsville Speedway (0.526-mile) begins at 1:00 p.m. ET on Sunday, October 30th. The race will be broadcast live on NBCSN, Sirius XM Channel 90 and MRN Radio.

From the Cockpit:
Matt Kenseth:
“I look forward to going to Martinsville because it’s been a pretty good race track for us since I came over to JGR (Joe Gibbs Racing). It’s a place where I feel like we’ve been in the mix a fair amount and we’ve kind of been a threat to have a shot at winning even though we don’t have all the results there that we wanted, but I feel that it’s been a place that has been pretty good for us. The entire track is so unique because it’s the smallest track we go to and it doesn’t have any banking, so it’s just completely different than anywhere else that we go. Martinsville is really the only true slow and slick short track where you actually have to manage tires and it makes it unique. We ran really well at Martinsville in the spring and I thought we had a shot to win but we just caught a caution late when we were running second, and we restarted on old tires on the outside groove and I just could never get back to the bottom lane. It was a disappointing finish but overall, it was very encouraging and one of my better runs there.”

From the Pit Box:
Jason Ratcliff
: “Martinsville has become one of Matt’s (Kenseth) best tracks in recent years and it’s a place that I’ve also started to look forward to. I feel that as a group JGR (Joe Gibbs Racing) also typically runs pretty well at Martinsville. I thought that we ran very well in the spring race, and I think that in this next round of the Chase, I feel that Martinsville is the one that we’re looking at as one that we feel we may have the best shot at. We just were stuck in the wrong lane for the final restart this past spring at Martinsville, otherwise, I really feel that we would have finished in the top three or four. It’s always a little different coming back to Martinsville in the fall since the track can be very sensitive on how it takes rubber and that of course can affect what you need in the later laps of the race. We’ll be keeping an eye on the weather for this weekend and then try to plan accordingly, but I think that our notes from the spring race will be a good starting spot for us to work from.”

About Dollar General:
Dollar General Corporation has been delivering value to shoppers for over 75 years. Dollar General helps shoppers Save time. Save money. Every day!® by offering products that are frequently used and replenished, such as food, snacks, health and beauty aids, cleaning supplies, basic apparel, housewares and seasonal items at low everyday prices in convenient neighborhood locations. Dollar General operated 13,000 stores in 43 states as of August 13, 2016. In addition to high quality private brands, Dollar General sells products from America’s most-trusted manufacturers such as Clorox, Energizer, Procter & Gamble, Hanes, Coca-Cola, Mars, Unilever, Nestle, Kimberly-Clark, Kellogg’s, General Mills, and PepsiCo. For more information on Dollar General, please visit www.dollargeneral.com.

- Joe Gibbs Racing

Martinsville Betting Preview: 2016 Goody's Fast Relief 500

Kevin Harvick is the 5/2 favorite to win Sprint Cup.
And now we're down to the Elite 8.

NASCAR's version of the playoffs has been whittled down the field of 16 down to just eight drivers after six races and we can call the Round of 8 that starts Sunday at Martinsville Speedway the semifinals of sorts. The eight eligible drivers to win the Sprint Cup will have three races to impress the most before the championship field of four drivers is set for an all-or-nothing season finale No. 20 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

The best way to advance for the eight drivers is to simply win one of the next three races, or else accumulate the most points. If there are three different Chase drivers to win each of the races, only one driver will advance on points. Two of the heavyweight contenders to win it all, Martin Truex Jr and Brad Keselowski, both had engine failures at Talladega last week and have been eliminated.

Let's take a look at the eight Sprint Cup contenders, their updated Championship odds from the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook and how they might fare this week at Martinsville and then at Texas and Phoenix the following two weeks.

Joey Logano 6/1: He should have nightmares recurring from last season when his championship hopes were dashed immediately at Martinsville when Matt Kenseth repaid a debt and wrecked him while leading. Logano had won three straight races and looked like the favorite to win it all up until that point. His only win between the three tracks came at Texas. I don't like him to advance.

Jimmie Johnson 4/1: No driver has more Chase wins than the six-time champ. This round also suits his likes well: eight wins at Martinsville, six at Texas and four at Phoenix. Look for his best chance at winning to happen at Texas just because the last race on a high-banked 1.5-mile track was Charlotte (Oct. 9) where he led 155 laps and won. I've got him advancing.

Kevin Harvick 5/2: You have to make him the top favorite to advance just because he's won eight times at Phoenix, including six of the last eight there. He's never won at Texas and has a 2011 win at Martinsville. It would be a surprise if he wasn't racing for the title at Homestead.

Matt Kenseth 7/1: Martinsville has never been his strongest track (0 wins), but he was runner-up in 2013, sixth in both 2014 races and fourth last spring. He's got the luxury of having great Gibbs set-ups there now, like Hamlin and Kyle. At Texas, he's one of the elite with two wins and a 9.5 average finish in 27 starts. He's also won at Phoenix, a place where I think he'll be battling teammate Carl Edwards for a chance to advance. My best is guess is that he won't advance.

Carl Edwards 7/1: He's never won at Martinsville in 24 starts, but he does have three Texas wins and two Phoenix wins. In the March Phoenix race he led 65 laps, but was runner-up to Harvick. I believe his ultimate fate will come down to Phoenix and possibly needing a win to advance.

Odds to win 2016 Goody's Fast Relief 500 at Martinsville

Kyle Busch led 352 of 500 laps in April's Martinsville race.
WESTGATE LAS VEGAS SUPERBOOK
ODDS TO WINGOODY'S FAST RELIEF 500
MARTINSVILLE SPEEDWAY
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 30, 2016 - 1:16 PM ET


Denny HAMLIN 5/1
Kyle BUSCH 5/1
Jimmie JOHNSON 5/1
Kevin HARVICK 7/1
Brad KESELOWSKI 7/1
Matt KENSETH 8/1
Joey LOGANO 8/1
Jeff GORDON 12/1
Martin TRUEX JR 12/1
Carl EDWARDS 20/1
Kyle LARSON 25/1
Kurt BUSCH 25/1
Chase ELLIOTT 25/1
Kasey KAHNE 60/1
Jamie McMURRAY 60/1
Ryan NEWMAN 80/1
AJ ALLMENDINGER 80/1
Tony STEWART 80/1
Austin DILLON 100/1
Ryan BLANEY 100/1
Paul MENARD 100/1
Aric ALMIROLA 300/1
Greg BIFFLE 300/1
Ricky STENHOUSE JR 300/1
Trevor BAYNE 500/1
Clint BOWYER 500/1
Chris BUESCHER 1000/1
Danica PATRICK 1000/1
Casey MEARS 1000/1
FIELD 1000/1

Five Non-Chase Stories at Martinsville

A.J. Allmending, second in spring, is 80/1 to win Sunday.
MARTINSVILLE, Va. (Oct. 24, 2016) – This weekend NASCAR returns to Martinsville Speedway for the Goody’s Fast Relief 500 weekend. With the a lot of focus being on the Chase for the Sprint Cup, here are five non-chase related storylines:

1. Jeff Gordon – The defending race winner finds himself back in the Martinsville lineup, subbing for the injured Dale Earnhardt Jr. Gordon, a nine-time Martinsville winner, could very well be making his last start in NASCAR’s top series and has the chance to go out on top.

2. Ford – A Ford has not won at Martinsville since Kurt Busch won driving for Roush-Fenway Racing in 2002. Recently, Brad Keselowski has finished second and Joey Logano was in a position to win last fall, before an incident with Matt Kenseth late in the race ended his day. Could this be the year that Ford returns to Victory Lane at Martinsville?

3. Non-Chasers Winning – The focus will be on the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup and which driver will be the first to clinch a spot in the Championship Round at Homestead-Miami Speedway. However, two years ago, after being eliminated from championship contention, Dale Earnhardt Jr. won, keeping a Chase driver from locking up a spot. Can it happen again? A.J. Allmendinger, Jamie McMurray, Keselowski and Gordon have finished second in the last four Martinsville races and all four are out of championship contention.

4. Jimmie Johnson – The six-time champion is an eight-time Martinsville winner, the most among full-time, active drivers. However, the driver of the No. 48 hasn’t won at Martinsville since April 2013 and averaged a 22nd place finish in his last four Martinsville starts.

5. Joey Logano – The driver of the No. 22 will look to make Martinsville Speedway history on Virginia Lottery Pole Day, by becoming the first driver to win four consecutive Sprint Cup Series poles in the track’s 69-year history.

The Goody’s Fast Relief 500 Race Weekend is this weekend.

The action starts on Friday with Virginia Lottery Pole Day and continues on Saturday with the Texas Roadhouse 200 presented by Alpha Energy Solutions NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Race.

The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series is in action Sunday with the Goody’s Fast Relief 500.

Adult ticket prices for the Goody’s Fast Relief 500 start at $55. Seats in the Bill France Tower are only $60.

Last year, Jeff Gordon took home his ninth grandfather clock trophy and was the first driver to clinch a spot in the Championship Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.

The Goody’s Fast Relief 500 is the first race in the Round of 8 of the Chase.

Tickets can be purchased by calling 1.877.RACE.TIX or online at www.martinsvillespeedway.com.

- Martinsville Speedway

Kurt Busch going for third Martinsville win, ticket to Championship Round

Kurt Busch is the 18/1 longshot in Round of 8 to win championship
KANNAPOLIS, North Carolina (Oct. 24, 2016) – Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 41 State Water Heaters Chevrolet for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), turned in a solid fourth-place finish Sunday at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway to secure his advancement into the Round of 8 in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup championship. Busch’s recent performances certainly show things are heating up at the right time as he continues his pursuit of his second championship in NASCAR’s premier series.

And, as the No. 41 Chevrolet SS this weekend wears the colors of State Water Heaters, a leading manufacturer of commercial and residential water heaters, the timing couldn’t be better for Busch and his team’s anticipated heat wave on the racetrack.

State Water Heaters, based in Ashland, Tennessee, has seven water heater manufacturing plants and hundreds of distribution centers across the United States to ensure efficient service to the company’s national customer base of homeowners, wholesalers, contractors and members of the engineering community.

SHR, Busch and State Water Heaters have become champions in their respective trades thanks to their level of commitment. And this weekend at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway, Busch hopes to celebrate the partnership with some shared success at a racetrack where he’s twice found his way to victory lane.

Busch won his first race at Martinsville in October 2002. It was his second Sprint Cup victory and a record-breaking one, at that, as he took the green flag from the 36th starting position – the deepest in the field a Martinsville winner had ever started. He took the lead for the first time on the 389th of 500 laps and lost it for only one lap the rest of the way. His racecar fishtailed off of turn two several times in the closing laps, allowing Johnny Benson to mount a challenge. Busch ran the final 10 laps with Benson on his bumper but was able to hold on and secure his first win at the .526-mile oval.

Fast-forward to March 2014, when victory lane seemed like an unlikely destination for Busch and the No. 41 team from SHR at the rough-and-tumble .526-mile oval. Busch had a fast racecar, but a pit-road incident came close to ruining the day. Busch’s Chevy sustained damage after drivers Kasey Kahne and Brad Keselowski collided during a round of pit stops under caution. After an extra trip to pit road for repairs, Busch restarted the race deep in the field – in 38th place. Thanks to a combination of smart pit work and the driver’s on-track savvy, Busch was able to work his way to the front of the field, where he and Jimmie Johnson traded the lead a handful of times over the final 30 laps. Busch took the lead for good on lap 490, holding off a bold move by Johnson out of turn four on the final lap. Busch ended an 83-race winless streak and scored his first victory for SHR.

With this year’s Chase Round of 12 in the rearview mirror and the points reset for the eight drivers still eligible for the championship, Busch heads to Martinsville this weekend looking not only for his second win of the season, but also to accomplish what he did in the opening race of the Round of 12 – to simply maximize his points position by turning in a solid performance.

While a third Martinsville win would add to the list of successes that Busch has experienced at the paperclip-shaped racetrack, it would do much more than that for the Las Vegas native’s 2016 championship hopes. A win this weekend would guarantee him a spot in the final, winner-take-all Championship Round Nov. 20 in the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. And having scored victories at each of the remaining racetracks on the schedule –Martinsville, Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, Phoenix International Raceway and at Homestead – Busch certainly can’t be counted out as a threat for the 2016 championship.

KURT BUSCH, Driver of the No. 41 State Water Heaters Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing:

Talk about heading to Martinsville this weekend and kicking off the Round of 8.

“If we can go to Martinsville and win that bad boy, that changes the whole Chase complexion. That’s what happened last year when Jeff Gordon won there. That gave him his shot at the championship. We’re doing our job as a team. We’ve had some luck on our side, and we’ve had good speed in our racecars.”

What is it that makes Martinsville such a special racetrack?
“I know that everybody looks forward to Martinsville to see the action at a short track. It’s very different than all the other racetracks on the circuit because of the intimate setting. Pit road, the racetrack, the fans are right on top of it and, as drivers and teams, you feel that intensity from the fans and so it’s great to have their passion. And the ability for the fans to be so close to the action at Martinsville, that’s what makes it so unique.”

Martinsville has been a good track for you. Is there a reason that the track suits you?

“It’s been a good track to me over the years. It’s one of those tough tracks, though. Short tracks, things happen. Things move quickly. I think it has to do with level of patience and technology advancements each time we race at Martinsville. Sometimes the racecar drives very differently. Some of the old patterns that we all learned as short-track racers apply, but you have to apply them in different ways.”

Talk about the evolution from a time when brakes were the most important thing to now, where it’s all about finding grip.
“Technology has advanced so far to where the brakes aren’t necessarily an issue. It used to be that brakes were the main concern. You had to make sure you saved them, that you didn’t wear them out and that you had them for the latter part of the race. Now, with newer technology, the brakes don’t seem to have as many issues, but it’s a matter of how much you can get out of the rear tires for grip, which has always been an issue at Martinsville, trying to get that traction out of the corner and down the straightaway. For me, it’s all about corner exit. It’s trying to get that traction put down and trying to turn underneath another car to complete a pass.”

- True Speed Communication for Stewart-Haas Racing

Monday, October 24, 2016

Updated 2016 Sprint Cup odds heading into Martinville

Joey Logano caught a lucky break at Talladega with jack stuck to car.
WESTGATE LAS VEGAS SUPER BOOK
ODDS TO WIN 2016 SPRINT CUP


Kevin HARVICK 5/2
Joey LOGANO 6/1
Kyle BUSCH 6/1
Jimmie JOHNSON 4/1
Matt KENSETH 7/1
Carl EDWARDS 7/1
Denny HAMLIN 8/1
Kurt BUSCH 18/1

odds as of October 24, 2016

Joey Logano wins at Talladega for second straight season

Joey Logano held on to win at Talladega. His teammate, Brad Keselowski, dominiated the race before an engine failure.

Talladega Results

Talladega Fast Facts

* Joey Logano won the 48th Annual Hellmann's 500, his 16th victory in 287 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
* This is his second victory and 22nd top-10 finish in 2016.
* This is his second victory and sixth top-10 finish in 16 races at Talladega Superspeedway. This is his second consecutive win in the Talladega Chase race.
* Brian Scott (second) posted his first top-10 finish in four races at Talladega Superspeedway. It is his first top-10 finish in 2016.
* Denny Hamlin (third) posted his eighth top-10 finish in 22 races at Talladega Superspeedway.
* The following drivers advance tot he Chase's Round of 8 (ordered by seed): Joey Logano, Jimmie Johnson, Kevin Harvick, Matt Kenseth, Carl Edwards, Denny Hamlin, Kurt Busch, Kyle Busch.

* Martin Truex Jr., the pole winner, had an engine expire on lap 41, and finished 40th/last. Truex is the first pole winner to finish last since Denny Hamlin won the pole at Atlanta in September 2010 and finished 43rd/last. The finish also knocked Truex Jr. out of the Chase.
* Brad Keselowski led th most laps at 90 but had an engine expire on lap 144, ending his day and knocking him out of the Chase.
* Eliminated from the Chase: Austin Dillon, Truex Jr., Chase Elliott and Keselowski. Dillon and Hamlin were tied for 8th but Hamlin finished 3rd and Dillon 9th. Tie goes to the driver who had the best finish in that round. Hamlin had the 3rd and Dillon had a 6th from Kansas, so Hamlin advances.
* There were 31 lead changes among 14 drivers and 6 cautions for 25 yellow flag laps.
* Average race speed: 159.905mph

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Final Talladega Driver Ratings: 2016 Alabama 500

The Hendrick Motorsports cars should all be good; Chase Elliott might have to win to move on in Chase. 
Micah Roberts' Sprint Cup Driver Ratings
Alabama 500
Talladega SuperSpeedway
Sunday, October 23, 2016 - 11:20 am PT

RATING  DRIVER    ODDS                  PRACTICE 1            PRACTICE 2           QUALIFIED           MAY '16* 
 1. Brad Keselowski (11/2)          23rd               DNP                  2nd              1st 
Four-time winner, including May where he led most laps (46); won two of the three 2016 plate races.
 2. Denny Hamlin (10/1)              14th               11th                   8th             31st
2014 winner and dominated Daytona Speedweeks; 11.7 average finish in 11 plates race since 2014.
 3. Kyle Busch (12/1)                 17th                 9th                  14th             2nd 
2008 winner; one of best on restrictor-plate tracks in 2016 with a third-place and two runner-ups.
 4. Joey Logano (17/2)                26th               13th                  16th            25th
2015 winner, also won 2015 Daytona 500; sixth and fourth-place finishes at Daytona this season.
 5. Matt Kenseth (12/1)               16th                2nd                    3rd           23rd
2012 winner, runner-up in 2014; led 39 laps in May before being in accident with six laps to go.
 6. Jimmie Johnson (10/1)           15th                1st                    17th          22nd
Two-time winner, the last time in 2011; runner-up in 2015. Has already advanced to Round of 8.
 7. Chase Elliott (12/1)                21st                3rd                     4th            5th
Fifth in May (led 27 laps). Has to make up 25-points to advance to next round, win likely needed.
 8. Austin Dillon (20/1)                27th               15th                     9th           3rd
Only Hamlin has better restrictor-plate average finish than his 11.9 in 11 starts since 2014.
 9. Kevin Harvick (12/1)                 9th                DNP                 22nd          15th
2010 winner with 15.3 average finish in 31 starts. Already advanced to next round, so it's free-roll.
10. Greg Biffle (50/1)                    1st                DNP                    5th          20th 
No wins in 27 starts (19.7 avg), but all the Roush cars have been fast in 2016 with plates on.

* Results from the Geico 500 at Talladega on May 1, 2016. Sunday's event is the fourth and final race on a restrictor-plate race this season.

Note: Four drivers will be eliminated from Sprint Cup Chase contention after this race as the Round of 8 begins next week at Martinsville.

Odds courtesy of William Hill sports books.

Micah Roberts, a former sports book director, has been been setting NASCAR lines in Las Vegas since 1994. Follow on Twitter @MicahRoberts7


LAS VEGAS -- Sunday's Alabama 500 at Talladega SuperSpeedway's monstrous 2.66-mile layout will be the final race in the Round of 12 and the sixth during the 10-race Sprint Cup Chase. Two drivers have already qualified to advance to the Round of 8 by virtue of winning, and three other drivers have a relatively safe lead in points, but for the other seven drivers there's lots to be worried about. At the conclusion of the race, four drivers will be eliminated from NASCAR's version of the playoffs.

Talladega races might offer the most exciting brand of racing in the series because everything is huge, such as the speeds at 200 mph. The track is the longest in the circuit, has the steepest banking at 33 degrees and the wrecks are spectacular 10 to-15 car pile ups. The cars are bunched up side-by-side, sometimes four wide, and because of the restrictor-plates, most cars are equal meaning up to 35 of the 40 drivers are all bunched together and each has a legitimate shot to win.

For betting purposes, those type of traits aren't attractive. There's too much randomness. There's nothing worse than seeing your wager go down the tubes with the best car because of being involved in another drivers mistake. And all it takes is one simple wiggle from a car.

What I like to do for the plate races is drop my normal weekly NASCAR bankroll down by 50 percent, and rarely will I play any match-ups unless given +115 on anyone. I'll then spread wagers around on six to seven drivers to win and hope for my highest return on investment cashes. It takes a lot of luck, and very little skill to cash.

How I come to find those drivers is almost like a lottery, or just simply drawing a driver number out of a hat. Yes, it's that random. I don't have relevant practices to go off like a normal race, so it's basically just going by past history of drivers on plate races and maybe seeing something stand out with a certain driver in those races despite maybe not finishing well.

As for the practices, the times are almost irrelevant because of the massive speeds obtained during the draft. The two practice sessions from Friday aren't going to reveal much. In fact, the drivers don't even think it's too important as only 25 drivers practiced in the final session. If the crew chief and drivers don't think it's important, that's good enough for me.

What solid ground we do have to work with when wagering a Talladega race is looking at recent races there and at Daytona. This is the final of four plate race this season. Denny Hamlin (10/1) started the season off by winning the non-points Sprint Unlimited and then won the Daytona 500 the following week. Brad Keselowski (11/2) has won the past two, at Talladega in May and Daytona in July. Kyle Busch (12/1) has finished third or better in all three of the points-paying plate races this season.

For Hamlin, he felt the Talladega wrath in May with a 31st-place finish. For Keselowski, he's a four-time winner at the beastly track, including the first win of his career with a part-time underfunded team. Those two are the favorites for obvious reasons, but you can't be faulted for taking a shot on a long shot.

Drivers that offer a great opportunity to cash at long prices this week come from the Roush Fenway racing stable. Trevor Bayne (60/1) finished third at Daytona in July and 10th at Talladega after leading 22 laps. Bayne's only career win was the 2011 Daytona 500 where it paid out at 100-to-1 odds. Greg Biffle (50/1) has never won at Talladega in 27 starts, but he was fastest in Friday's practice and also had the best 10-consecutive lap average. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (50/1) has a 12.8 average finish at Talladega in six starts which is tops among active drivers.

With less cash wagered and sitting at the edge of your seat waiting for the "big one" to happen, you definitely get the most bang your buck in these type of races, and sometimes you may even come out ahead with the winner.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Talladega Betting Preview: 2016 Alabama 500

Brad Keselowski was commanding the last time at Talladega.
The beauty of NASCAR's playoff system will be on display Sunday at Talladega Superspeedway, the most volatile track in the series. Eight drivers will advance to the next round and four drivers will be eliminated.

It was designed that way by NASCAR to create the most drama possible just because races on the 2.66-mile restrictor-plate track are major crap shoots. No one knows what's going to happen and the cars are going 200 mph, but they're driving on egg-shells being ever so cautious.

Everyone has a shot to win and everyone also has a chance at seeing their car wrapped up in a 15-car pile-up. No driver is out of harms way. So while we're all watching 40 cars shuffle around for the lead, we've also the drama of 10 drivers try to take six of the remaining spots in the Round of 8 which begins next week at Martinsville.

Jimmie Johnson and Kevin Harvick have already advanced by virtue of winning the first twoi races of this round. For those on the cusp of not advancing, Talladega is definitely not the track they wanted to see to decide their 2016 fate.

The problem with restrictor-plate racing is that every car is equal and up to 35 of the 40 drivers have a legitimate shot to win. Just glance over the odds-to-win sheet this week and you'll notice a huge change from what was listed last week for Kansas. You won't see giant odds of 200/1 on anyone because almost anyone can win. Last week at Kansas only 15 drivers could legitimately say they could win.

Things happen fast at Talladega and drivers are sitting ducks. All it takes is for one driver to wiggle in line while 40 cars are stacked three-wide and it turns into a massive pile-up. At Kansas, there's a strategy, but at Talladega it's a crap shoot and the main goal for 178 of the 188 laps is to simply avoid trouble. It's easier said then done, but for a couple of early season favorites who are outside looking in to the transfer spot this week, they have to figure a way to win.

Let's take a look at the four drivers on the chopping block:

Read More Here....Top-5 Prediction on VegasInsider.com

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

2016 Chase Clinch Scenarios for Talladega

An uneasy feeling for drivers at Talladega needing help to advance. 
Clinching for Talladega

Note: Jimmie Johnson and Kevin Harvick have already clinched a spot in the Round of 8. With only one race remaining in this round, a new winner would be a win by Joey Logano, Austin Dillon, Denny Hamlin, Brad Keselowski or Chase Elliott. A win by any other driver would be considered a repeat winner for the clinching requirements (so, Johnson/Harvick, or a non-Chase driver, or a driver ahead of Logano in points).

Matt Kenseth (0 Wins, 3074 Points) - Would clinch on points with 13 Points (28th and no laps led, 29th and led at least one lap, 30th and led most laps) and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner, would clinch on points with 11 Points (30th and no laps led, 31st and led at least one lap, 32nd and led most laps). With a win, would clinch a next round spot on wins.

Kyle Busch (0 Wins, 3072 Points)
- Would clinch on points with 15 Points (26th and no laps led, 27th and led at least one lap, 28th and led most laps) and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner, would clinch on points with 14 Points (27th and no laps led, 28th and led at least one lap, 29th and led most laps). With a win, would clinch a next round spot on wins.

Carl Edwards (0 Wins, 3069 Points) - Would clinch on points with 18 Points (23rd and no laps led, 24th and led at least one lap, 25th and led most laps) and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner, would clinch on points with 16 Points (25th and no laps led, 26th and led at least one lap, 27th and led most laps). With a win, would clinch a next round spot on wins.

Kurt Busch (0 Wins, 3062 Points) - Would clinch on points with 25 Points (16th and no laps led, 17th and led at least one lap, 18th and led most laps) and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner, would clinch on points with 24 Points (17th and no laps led, 18th and led at least one lap, 19th and led most laps). With a win, would clinch a next round spot on wins.

Martin Truex Jr (0 Wins, 3058 Points) - Would clinch on points with 29 Points (12th and no laps led, 13th and led at least one lap, 14th and led most laps) and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner, would clinch on points with 28 Points (13th and no laps led, 14th and led at least one lap, 15th and led most laps). With a win, would clinch a next round spot on wins.

Joey Logano (0 Wins, 3045 Points) - If there is a repeat winner, would clinch on points with 41 Points (2nd and led most laps). With a win, would clinch a next round spot on wins. Could clinch on points with a new winner and help.

Austin Dillon (0 Wins, 3045 Points) - If there is a repeat winner, would clinch on points with 41 Points (2nd and led most laps). With a win, would clinch a next round spot on wins. Could clinch on points with a new winner and help.

Denny Hamlin (0 Wins, 3039 Points) - With a win, would clinch a next round spot on wins. Could clinch on points with help.

Brad Keselowski (0 Wins, 3038 Points)
- With a win, would clinch a next round spot on wins. Could clinch on points with help.

Chase Elliott (0 Wins, 3020 Points) - With a win, would clinch a next round spot on wins. Could clinch on points with help.

- NASCAR

Monday, October 17, 2016

Kevin Harvick advances to next round with Kansas win

Kevin Harvick wins for the second time at Kansas Speedway.
Kansas Race Facts
* Kevin Harvick (C) won the 16th Annual Hollywood Casino 400, his 35th victory in 569 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
* This is his fourth victory and 23rd top-10 finish in 2016.
* This is his second victory and 11th top-10 finish in 22 races at Kansas Speedway.
* Carl Edwards (C) (second) posted his 13th top-10 finish in 19 races at Kansas Speedway. It is his 17th top-10 finish in 2016.
* Joey Logano (C) (third) posted his sixth top-10 finish in 15 races at Kansas Speedway.
* Ryan Blaney (14th) was the highest finishing rookie.
* Jimmie Johnson (C) leads the point standings by 8 points over Matt Kenseth (C).

Kansas Results

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Final Kansas Speedway Driver Ratings: 2016 Hollywood Casino 400

Kevin Harvick confirmed during Saturday's final Kansas practices why he was the pre-race favorite to win 
Micah Roberts' Sprint Cup Driver Ratings
Hollywood Casino 400
Kansas Speedway
Sunday, October 16, 2016 - 11:31 am PT


RATING  DRIVER    ODDS                    PRACTICE 1          QUALIFIED               PRACTICE 2         PRACTICE 3
 1. Kevin Harvick (7/2)                  9th               11th                  2nd                 13th
2013 winner, runner-up three of past five starts; fastest 10-consecutive lap average in practice 3.
 2. Matt Kenseth (12/1)                11th                1st                   5th                  1st
Two-time winner (2012, 2013), fourth in May. Led 153 laps last fall before being punted late.
 3. Denny Hamlin (15/1)               10th                7th                 11th                 20th 
2012 winner, runner-up last fall. Outstanding practices on long runs, strong contender to win.
 4. Kyle Busch (8/1)                      1st                2nd                   8th                  5th
Won May race, fifth and third in previous two; best 10-consecutive lap average in practice 2.
 5. Chase Elliott (10/1)                  5th               13th                   4th                  4th
Ninth in first Cup start at track in May. Quality final practice suggest he'll improve ninth in points.
 6. Carl Edwards (12/1)                 3rd                 3rd                 15th                12th 
2008 runner-up, 10.6 average in 18 starts. Third-best 10-consecutive lap average in practice 3.
 7. Martin Truex Jr. (7/2)                7th                4th                  16th                 7th
Led the most laps in two of past three Kansas races; two wins and most laps led on 1.5s in 2016.
 8. Kyle Larson (20/1)                   21st               24th                  3rd                 2nd
Runner-up in 2014, 12th or worse in his four other starts; strong all-around final two practices.
 9. Brad Keselowski (12/1)           32nd                8th                  21st                 9th 
2011 winner with 12.1 average fnish in 13 starts; two wins on 1.5-mile tracks this season.
10. Jimmie Johnson (5/1)               8th               21st                 25th                23rd
Didn't practice well, but has two 2016 wins on 1.5s and track-best 9.1 average with three wins.

Note: This will be the second race of the season at Kansas and ninth of 11 races on a 1.5-mile tracks this season. It's also the second of three Chase races in the Round of 12.

Odds courtesy of Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook.

Micah Roberts, a former sports book director, has been been setting NASCAR lines in Las Vegas since 1994. Follow on Twitter @MicahRoberts7

FINAL KANSAS BETTING NOTES - LVRJ

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Kansas Betting Preview: 2016 Hollywood Casino 400

Hendrick cars found something special during Chicago test.
We've got six races left in the NASCAR Sprint Cup season and two races remaining during this round of 12 playoff stage until we're left with just eight eligible drivers to win the title.

This Sunday's Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway is almost a must-win situation for a couple of drivers that got the round started on the wrong foot last week just because the final race of this round next week is at the volatile Talladega Superspeedway, where drivers get knocked out of the race more than any other track on the circuit.

Sunday's race will be the ninth of 11 races on 1.5-mile tracks and the third of five in the Chase. Drivers like Kevin Harvick, Chase Elliott, Joey Logano and Denny Hamlin all had finishes of 30th or worse last week at Charlotte.

Harvick was listed as the Sprint Cup favorite coming into the round last week, but now because of the current situation it's Charlotte winner Jimmie Johnson who is the 5/2 favorite (Bet $100 to win $250) to win his seventh title.

"Johnson is favored to win just because he's already made it through to the next round," saidWestgate SuperBook manager Ed Salmons. "But there's no denying how fast fast Hendrick Motorsports has been."

Johnson could finish dead last in the next two race and still advance just because of winning in this round. He won two of the first fives races this season (Atlanta and Fontana), but hadn't won again until Sunday, one of the largest droughts of his career and also for the Hendrick stable of four drivers. No Hendrick driver has won a race other than Johnson this year.

But something clicked for the team during a Chicagoland test session in August. They found speed, and found something to elevate their game above the Joe Gibbs Racing gang which has won 15 of the 30 races this year.

When the actual Chicago race rolled around to kick off the Chase Sept. 18, the entire Hendrick team did well. Johnson led the most laps (118), but settled for 12th, and the other three finished in the top-10 highlighted by Elliott's third-place finish. Elliott also led the second most laps (75).

On their next visit to a 1.5-mile track last week at Charlotte, they duplicated what they did at Chicago expect they got the win. Johnson led the most laps (155) and Elliott led the second-most with 103, although he was involved in a late accident and finished 33rd.

Kasey Kahne even got into the fun with a third-place finish, his best of the season. Kahne's been 12th or better in his last six starts overall and has the most points among all non-Chase drivers. He's a nice long shot look this week to win at Kansas.

Jimmie Johnson goes for fourth Kansas win

Jimmie Johnson is now the 5/2 favorite to win Sprint Cup.
Jimmie Johnson on his win at Charlotte and moving forward in the Chase
“Heading into Kansas, the win in Charlotte certainly opens up the possibility for whatever opportunities may present themselves. We can go there to race and to win without pressure. This win at Charlotte also allows me go to Talladega and not worry about anything, which is fantastic. I can just get up in the race and mix it up, and race hard. We’ve also been very competitive at Texas, Martinsville, so good things ahead for us.”

MOVING ON: Last weekend in Charlotte, Johnson advanced to the Round of 8 by winning his fourth fall race at Charlotte Motor Speedway and eighth overall at the 1.5-mile track. It’s the first time since NASCAR began this format of the Chase in 2014 that the No. 48 has made it through to the final eight contenders.

FOLLOW THE LEADER: So far in the four Chase races, Johnson and team have turned up the wick and have led a total of 363 laps – 118 at Chicago, 90 at Dover and 155 at Charlotte. Prior to that, in the 26-race regular season, Johnson led a total of 266 laps.

SERIES BEST: Johnson has the series-best driver rating at Kansas Speedway with a score of 110.4. He has an average finish of 7.882 and an average running position of 9.513, both of which are series-best.

78 WINS AND COUNTING: Johnson’s win at Charlotte was his 78th win of his career. Earlier this season he passed the late Dale Earnhardt for seventh most wins of all time with 77. The next record in line for all-time wins is 83, currently occupied by NASCAR Hall of Famer Cale Yarborough.

TIED WITH GORDON FOR MOST WINS: Johnson has three wins at Kansas Speedway and is tied for the most all-time wins at the track with Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jeff Gordon.

1.5-MILE TRACK MILESTONES: Johnson currently holds the record for all-time wins on 1.5-mile tracks. He has earned 26 victories, which include eight at Charlotte Motor Speedway, six at Texas Motor Speedway, five at Atlanta Motor Speedway, four at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and three at Kansas Speedway.

JIMMIE JOHNSON WELLNESS VIRTUAL TRIATHLON: Being a part of #TeamJJF means staying involved and being up-to-date with the Jimmie Johnson Foundation and its events not only by participating, but also by following through social media. The Jimmie Johnson Foundation is launching its first “virtual triathlon." Joining #TeamJJF is a perfect way to support the Jimmie Johnson Foundation’s mission of assisting children, families and communities in need while taking on a personal athletic challenge. The Jimmie Johnson Foundation Virtual Triathlon takes place during the month of October. The challenge is to swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles and run 26.2 miles. Learn more here.
 
 

2016 Season

  • 1st in standings
  • 30 starts
  • 3 wins
  • 1 pole position
  • 8 top-five finishes
  • 13 top-10 finishes
  • 629 laps led
 
 

Career

  • 537 starts
  • 78 wins
  • 35 pole positions
  • 215 top-five finishes
  • 327 top-10 finishes
  • 18,338 laps led
 
 

Track Career 

  • 20 starts
  • 3 wins
  • 3 pole positions
  • 8 top-five finishes
  • 16 top-10 finishes
  • 601 laps led