Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Roberts' Top-20 Finish Prediction: 2018 Daytona 500

Ford is really fast; engine, set-up, aero....they got the package nice.
The 60th running of the Daytona 500 kicks off the 2018 NASCAR Cup Series on Sunday

And it figures to be as wild as all recent restrictor-plate races have been. However, despite 34 of the 40 cars entered being relatively equal with a chance to win offering more randomness than at any other type of track, Ford has proven they have the best plate package.

Ford has won the past three points-paying races on Daytona's 2.5-mile high banked layout and they've won the past two non-point Clashes, including Sunday, when Brad Keselowski grabbed his first Daytona Speedweeks win. Ford has also won the past five races at Talladega, the other track requiring restrictor-plates.

So while all things are equal, a few drivers are in their restrictor-plate zones right now. Not too much has changed regarding rules, which makes the type of racing we'll see similar to the past three years of plate racing.

A piece of advice for Sunday is to make a few wagers on odds to win with a small favorite around 10-to-1, a middle of the pack guy or two at 20-to-1 and long shot in the 40-or 50-to-1 range. Also, the randomness of when the big wreck happens taking out several quality cars makes betting driver vs. driver matchups not as enticing.

Here's how I see it going down on Sunday


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