The Quaker State 400 – the 18th auto betting racing event of the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season, to be held on July 8, 2017 at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta, Kentucky – is Brad Keselowski’s turf. The two-time Cup Series champion has won this race on three of its six runnings since it was added to the schedule in 2011 (when he finished 7th), in 2012, 2014, and 2016 – when he practically won on fumes; in fact he said following the race that he felt “terrible that I couldn’t do a burnout for the fans. I didn’t have enough gas”. His almost running out of fuel did lure runner-up Carl Edwards into a false sense of security, allowing Keselowski to play possum in order to win the race for a third time. Additionally, he came in 6th place in 2015. His worst finish in Sparta was 33rd in 2013. All of that notwithstanding, Keselowski does seem to win it only on even years, while Kyle Bush has the most wins on odd years. And speaking of which…
Busch won the inaugural QS400 and repeated in 2015, when there were 13 lead chances, though once Busch took the lead back from Joey Logano with 18 laps left he never relinquished it again. In addition to that, Busch finished 10th in 2012, 5th in 2013, 2nd in 2014, and 12th in 2016. This season, he had posted three straight top 10 finishes before placing 20th at the 2017 Coke Zero 400 on Saturday.
The veteran is sort of an auto racing betting fave for the Quaker State by default, being the only driver other than Keselowski and Busch to have won it – and the only one besides Busch to win it on an odd year. Kenseth has always finished inside the top 10 at Kentucky Speedway (6th in 2011, 7th in 2012, 4th in 2014, 5th in 2015, and 8th in 2016).
Not unlike Kenseth, Harvick has four straight top 10 finishes in Kentucky; 10th in 2013, 7th in 2014, 8th in 2015, and 9th in 2016. Harvick recently won his first race of the year (the 2017 Toyota/Save Mart 350) but then had his second-worst finish of the year, a 33rd place in the Coke Zero.
An old favourite of people who bet on auto racing, JJ came the closest to winning this race in its first edition, when came in 3rd place. Conversely, he had his worst finish in Sparta last year with a 32nd place, the only time that he has ever finished outside of the top 10 there.
Truex’s placed 10th at Kentucky Speedway last year and 7th in 2013, which may give him an edge over Kyle Larson – who leads the driver standings 14 points ahead of Truex but whose best finish in Kentucky has been a 19th place last year. But both have had disappointing results in the last couple of races of the season and could use a win.