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Bodog Sportsbook: Irwin Tools Night Race Gambling Preview

Bristol Sprint Cup Odds

Last week Kevin Harvick extended his lead in the Sprint Cup driver standings to nearly 300 points with a win in Michigan, and he also became the first driver to guarantee himself a spot in the Chase for the Sprint Cup.

Harvick will look to extend that lead this weekend when NASCAR goes to Bristol Motor Speedway for the 2010 Irwin Tools Night Race.

The race will be broadcast on ABC for the first time. Managing to post a deep finish at Bristol is not an easy feat, and of all the tracks on the Sprint Cup circuit, Bristol Motor Speedway is the toughest track on which to call a favorite. The half-mile steep oval is notorious for bumps and crashes, and just about any driver has a chance to take the checkered flag in the Irwin Tools Night Race if they are patient enough to wait for the right opportunity to make a move.

The best way to determine a favorite at Bristol is to look at the records of the drivers at this track. Ford drivers have won four of the last five years of the race. Both Matt Kenseth and Carl Edwards have won it twice in that time. Kyle Busch will be defending the title from last year, and could be the one to watch again this year if he can stay out of trouble. Jeff Gordon has five victories and 20 top-ten finishes in 35 starts at Bristol. He’s not afraid of the rough stuff and will likely be a factor late in the race if he can stay away from trouble during the day.

The Bodog Sportsbook is offering action on which driver will take the checkered flag at Bristol this weekend. The odds-on favorite to win the race at this point is Jimmie Johnson. He’s getting 11/2 to win, while second favorite Kurt Busch will pay 13/2. Brother Kyle is next at 7/1, while Tony Stewart will pay 10/1. Standings leader Kevin Harvick, Greg Biffle, and Carl Edwards will all come in after that at 12/1. Jeff Gordon and Denny Hamlin round up the favorites at 14/1, and both look like a bargain at that price.

One way not to try to figure out which driver should be the favorite at Bristol is to compare the results from earlier in the season. The track will be very different this weekend compared to what it was in the spring. The track will be slicker this weekend and the race will also be run at night, which will benefit some drivers while handicapping others.

A race at Bristol is an opportunity to make a longshot bet part of your action. With so much physical racing going on, this race could see just about any driver taking the checkered flag. With some drivers paying as much as 500/1 to win, making a small longshot bet as part of your wagers this weekend could turn into a great payday.

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