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Image for Reid Spencer Reid Spencer - Updated October 14, 2022

Coke Zero Sugar 400: Bubba Wallace Will Try to Replace His Teammate in the Cup Playoff With a Victory

  • Bubba Wallace will try to replace his teammate in the Cup Playoff with a victory.
  • Ryan Blaney vs. Martin Truex Jr. may become a moot point at Daytona.
  • Aside from Bubba Wallace, is there an upset brewing in the Coke Zero Sugar 400?

Coke Zero Sugar 400 Betting Odds

Odds taken from DraftKings Sportsbook

Winner Odds
Chase Elliott +1000
Ryan Blaney +1200
Denny Hamlin +1200
Bubba Wallace +1200
Ross Chastain +1300
Kyle Larson +1300
Joey Logano +1300
William Byron +1300
Kyle Busch +1500
Austin Cindric +1500
Martin Truex Jr. +1800
Daniel Suarez +2000
Tyler Reddick +2000
Alex Bowman +2200

Coke Zero Sugar 400 Picks

Bubba Wallace to win the race at +1200

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. to finish in the top three at +800

Tyler Reddick to beat Martin Truex Jr. head-to-head at -105

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Coke Zero Sugar 400 Odds

Coke Zero Sugar 400 Predictions

A Bubba Wallace Victory Would Be a Perfect Twist to the 23XI Story

On July 23 at Pocono Raceway, 23XI Racing driver Kurt Busch spun in Turn 3 during qualifying and slammed into the outside wall.

As it turned out, that accident would change the Playoff picture in the NASCAR Cup Series. Busch suffered a head injury and developed concussion-like symptoms and was not cleared to race the following day.

Nor was he cleared for subsequent events. Busch, who already had qualified for the postseason with a victory at Kansas Speedway, announced on Thursday that he was withdrawing his request for a medical exemption, and hence, was withdrawing from the Playoff.

That leaves two spots open, rather than one. And it leaves 23XI Racing without a driver in the postseason.

Enter Bubba Wallace, who must win on Saturday night to secure one of the two remaining Playoff spots. Wallace has the credentials to do so. In 10 starts at Daytona International Speedway, he has posted four top fives, three of which are runner-up results.

In fact, Wallace has finished second in each of his last two Daytona starts. We think he’ll improve by one position on Saturday and take the place of his injured teammate in the Playoff.

If you make the play at +1200, you’ll be rewarded, too.

The Ryan Blaney-Martin Truex Jr. Battle May Be Moot if Form Holds

For the last few weeks, Ryan Blaney and Martin Truex Jr. have been fighting each other for the final Playoff spot, but with Kurt Busch’s exit due to injury, both drivers are suddenly above the cut line.

Consequently, the battle between the two winless drivers has lost some of its intensity, but they still must dodge the possibility of another winless driver below them in the standings winning the Coke Zero Sugar 400 and stealing one of the two remaining spots.

Either Blaney or Truex will make the Playoff, and Blaney holds a commanding 25-point lead entering the final regular-season race. Not only that—Blaney has a much better record than Truex on superspeedways.

Blaney has a win at Daytona and two at sister track Talladega. Truex has never won a superspeedway race.

We don’t think you’ll find either Blaney or Truex in Victory Lane this weekend. What’s more, we like Playoff-bound Tyler Reddick to beat Truex head-to-head at -105.

Other Than Bubba Wallace, There’s a Large Group of Potential Spoilers

If Bubba Wallace wins on Saturday, he’ll knock either Ryan Blaney or Martin Truex Jr. out of the Playoff—most likely Truex given the size of Blaney’s points advantage.

But Wallace isn’t the only driver who could play spoiler. Aric Almirola, Brad Keselowski, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Austin Dillon, Erik Jones, Justin Haley and Michael McDowell are winless this year—but all have won a NASCAR Cup points race at Daytona.

Add to that list Keselowski’s teammate Chris Buescher, who has shown speed lately and who won one of the two non-points 150-mile qualifying races at Daytona to start the 2022 season.

Of the group, we like Stenhouse, who’s always fast on superspeedways, to finish in the top three at a tasty +800.

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How to Watch the Coke Zero Sugar 400

Race Coke Zero Sugar 400 NASCAR Cup Series race
Location Daytona International Speedway
Time Saturday, August 27, 7 p.m. ET
How to Watch NBC

Bet $20 Win $200 in Free Bets

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Image for Reid Spencer


Reid Spencer

198 Articles

Award-winning motorsports writer Reid Spencer has served as lead writer for the NASCAR Wire Service for 16 years, having also spent a four-year stint as NASCAR columnist and beat writer for Sporting News. He is currently serving as president of the National Motorsports Press Association. Email: [email protected]

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