Odds for NASCAR race at Michigan: Expert picks & favorites to win Saturday’s race

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Picking a winner based on the odds for Saturday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway (3 p.m. ET, NBCSN) is tricky since this is now a unique event. Not only is it NASCAR’s first visit to the two-mile oval in the Irish Hills of Michigan this season, but the FireKeepers Casino 400 is now the first leg of a Saturday-Sunday doubleheader.

When the NASCAR Cup Series last visited this track in August of last year, Kevin Harvick cruised to a win after successfully stretching his final fuel run. That, combined with the series points leader’s strong 2020 season thus far, is why Havick is considered the favorite for Saturday’s race at Michigan.

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Denny Hamlin finished second in that August race at Michigan last year, but only because Joey Logano gave up the position for a splash of fuel. Logano, of course, won the first of two Cup Series races at Michigan last season, so it’s no surprise to see Logano and Hamlin behind Harvick on the odds board for Saturday.

Below are the complete Vegas odds to win Saturday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Michigan, plus our top three picks of drivers who could end up taking the checkered flag.

NASCAR odds to win at Michigan

Harvick is a familiar favorite atop the odds board in 2020, as only Hamlin (five) has more wins than Harvick’s four victories this season. It doesn’t hurt that Harvick cruised to victory in the late-summer race at Michigan last season.

Below are the complete odds to win Saturday’s NASCAR race at Michigan, courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook.

DriverOdds to win Michigan race
Kevin Harvick+420
Denny Hamlin+500
Joey Logano+700
Brad Keselowski+800
Chase Elliott+800
Martin Truex Jr.+900
Kyle Busch+1200
Ryan Blaney+1300
Aric Almirola+1900
Kurt Busch+3100
Alex Bowman+3500
Erik Jones+3500
Clint Bowyer+4700
Matt DiBenedetto+4700
William Byron+4700
Jimmie Johnson+5500
Tyler Reddick+5500
Austin Dillon+7500
Christopher Bell+7500
Cole Custer+7500
Matt Kenseth+7500
Ryan Newman+17000
Brennan Poole+20000
Bubba Wallace+20000
Chris Buescher+20000
Corey LaJoie+20000
Daniel Suarez+20000
Ty Dillon+20000
Garrett Smithley+20000
JJ Yeley+20000
Joey Gase+20000
John Hunter Nemechek+20000
Michael McDowell+20000
Quin Houff+20000
Ricky Stenhouse Jr.+20000
Ryan Preece +20000

Below are the top 10 driver ratings at Michigan among active racers:

  1. Chase Elliott, 100.4
  2. Matt Kenseth, 99.8
  3. Kevin Harvick, 99.6
  4. Joey Logano, 99.3
  5. Brad Keselowski, 97.2
  6. Jimmie Johnson, 92.6
  7. Ryan Blaney, 92.2
  8. Kurt Busch, 91.5
  9. Denny Hamlin, 91.0
  10. Kyle Busch, 89.3 

Logano is on the pole for Saturday’s race at Michigan based on the results of a random draw, which is great news for the No. 22 team. The top starting position is by far the most proficient in the field at Michigan, producing almost 22 percent of the Cup Series winners at the track.

The last driver to win at Michigan after staring on the pole? Logano, in this race last year.

Below is the breakdown of wins by starting position in the history of Cup racing (101 total races) at Michigan.

Starting positionWinning %Wins
1st21.78 percent22
Front row30.69 percent31
Top 559.41 percent60
Top 1075.25 percent76
Outside top 206.93 percent7

The top 10 starters for Saturday’s race at Michigan (as determined by a random draw of the top 12 teams by owner points) are as follows:

  1. Joey Logano
  2. Denny Hamlin
  3. Kevin Harvick
  4. Aric Almirola
  5. Brad Keselowski
  6. Alex Bowman
  7. Kyle Busch
  8. Chase Elliott
  9. Clint Bowyer
  10. Kurt Busch

MORE: Complete starting lineup for New Hampshire race

NASCAR at Michigan expert picks

(Driver loop data stats are from 2005-present)

1. Kevin Harvick

Career stats at Michigan:

  • Three wins, 13 top fives, 19 top 10s; one pole
  • Average finish of 10.300 (second-best)
  • Average running position of 11.893 (sixth-best)
  • Driver rating of 99.6 (third-best)

Harvick is tied with Matt Kenseth and Kurt Busch for the most Cup Series starts (38) at Michigan, and he’s tied with Logano and Busch for the most wins (three) at the track among active drivers. That experience, combined with his team’s speed in 2020, should give him a good chance to notch victory No. 4 at the two-mile oval.

2. Chase Elliott

Career stats at Michigan:

  • Three top fives, seven top 10s
  • Average finish of 7.625 (series-best)
  • Average running position of 9.965 (series-best)
  • Driver rating of 100.4 (series-best)

Elliott has not yet won at Michigan in his Cup Series career, but statistically speaking, he is the best driver in Saturday’s field. Potentially helping his chance to win is the fact that the only comparable race thus far this season, the March 1 event at the similarly configured Auto Club Speedway, was won by Elliott’s Hendrick Motorsports teammate, Alex Bowman.

3. Joey Logano

Career stats at Michigan:

  • Three wins, six top fives, 15 top 10s; four poles
  • Average finish of 12.182 (fourth-best)
  • Average running position of 11.471 (fourth-best)
  • Driver rating of 99.3 (fourth-best)

Logano has an impressive resume at Michigan, and even though his teammates Brad Keselowski and Ryan Blaney are ahead of him in points this season, the driver of the No. 22 statistically is the best at this track among those in the Team Penske stable.

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