GEICO 500 Picks and Predictions

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Updated: April 22, 2021

Brad Keselowski is basically a real-life Ricky Bobby: a five-time Talladega champ, who can be found at a good price (+1,100) due to recent struggles.

Photo By – USA TODAY Sports

NASCAR betting goes to Alabama on Sunday, as we move away from the recent short races and head to the longest track at Talladega Superspeedway. 

We’ve already seen eight different drivers win this season through nice NASCAR Cup Series races. Will that trend continue?

Find out in Covers Experts’ Auto Racing Advisor preview and picks for the GEICO 500, which gets underway at 2:00 p.m. ET on April 25.

GEICO 500 favorites: Don’t sleep on Keselowski

Denny Hamlin (+650)

You have to take a look here. He won the fall race, was fourth in the spring race, third in the fall race in 2019, and has won two of the last three Daytona 500s (as well as three in the last six years). His superspeedway finishes last year were – 1st, 4th, 3rd, and 1st, respectively.

Brad Keselowski (+1,100)

You always go with Brad on a superspeedway race even though he’s struggled recently. He’s won five times at Talladega, so don’t sleep on him.

Joey Logano (+900)

He has four Top-5 finishes in his last seven Talladega starts and is a three-time Talladega winner in his last 12 tries, too.

Chase Elliott (+1,100)

Elliott finished runner-up in two of the last three points-paying races on superspeedways. He also has three Top-5 finishes in five spring starts at Talladega, including a win in 2019.

Covers NASCAR Betting Content

GEICO 500 long-shot picks: Talladega’s Ricky’s house

Aric Almirola (+1,600)

The Stewart-Haas Racing driver has eight Top-10 finishes in his last nine starts at Talladega, including five in the Top 5. He won there in the fall of 2018, and spun across the finish line to a third-place result last June.

Alex Bowman (+1,800)

He has three straight Top-8 finishes in the spring race and is coming off of a win last Sunday in Richmond.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (+2,000)

Always a superspeedway threat, Stenhouse Jr. was runner-up last spring and was ninth in the fall race the year prior. He’s had three Top-5 finishes in his last six Talladega starts, including six Top 10s over his last nine Talladega races overall. Five of those six were inside of the Top 5, too, including a win.

GEICO 500 matchup pick: Talladega not kind to Truex

Aric Almirola (-122) vs. Martin Truex Jr. (-109)

Truex has eight straight finishes of 20th or worse at Talladega, including just one Top 5 scored there since 2007. Almirola needs a win and says he’s going to play it safe to avoid most of the crashes all day, so he’s there for the win in the end. He’s had two career Cup wins, one of which occurred at Talladega a few years ago. In fact, Almirola has eight Top 10s in his last nine Talladega starts.

PREDICTION: Aric Almirola (-122)

GEICO 500 fades: Harvick still slumping

Kurt Busch (+2,500)
Martin Truex Jr. (+2,200)
Kevin Harvick (+2,000)

Kurt Busch is good on superspeedways but he’s also 0-for-40 at Talladega. I’d fade him this week. Martin Truex Jr. has just one Top-5 finish there since 2007. Kevin Harvick has just one Top 5 in his last 18 Talladega tries. Fade all three this week.

GEICO 500 preview

We’re heading to Talladega to close out the month of April in what will likely be another wild show. We’re going from two of the smallest race tracks on the schedule, in Martinsville and Richmond, and heading to the largest.

With eight different drivers victorious across nine races this season, will we get another new winner in Sunday’s GEICO 500? 

This is the time for those that wouldn’t normally make the playoffs to steal a win and secure a postseason berth as a result. There’s plenty of drivers in this weekend’s field who can do so, which is why so many of the big-name drivers who aren’t performing to standard this year and have yet to win may be sweating it out a little more than normal in past years.

Toyota has won just twice on this track since 2009. Both were by Hamlin. Kyle Busch finished 10th at Talladega back in April (2019) but that and two Top-5 finishes in the 2016 and 2017 spring races are the only Top 10s he’s had on the 2.66-mile oval since 2014. Truex has one Top 5 on this track since 2007. He’s been 20th or worse in his last seven Talladega starts.

Then you get some Ford guys like Harvick (one Top 5 in his last 18 Talladega starts) and Keselowski (18th or worse in five of his last six on this track) who may struggle as well.

GEICO 500 key stat

Ford has won 9 of the last 11 races at Talladega and took the win back in February at Daytona.

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