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The fourth race of the 2019 NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series playoffs will set the tone for the rest of the Round of 12.
This weekend’s winner will secure an automatic spot in the Round of 8.
But there will be many other storylines to keep an eye on.
While picking the race winner is the most interesting option, there are other possible bets available.
These five drivers are viable picks for a top 5 or even a top 5 finish, offering good value.
What: Drydene 400
Where: Dover International Speedway in Dover, DE
When: Sunday, October 6th at 2:30 PM EST
How: NBCSN (TV) | Motor Racing Network (Web radio) | NBC Sports App
While Clint Bowyer hasn’t been spectacular at Dover, he’s been incredibly consistent.
The Stewart-Haas driver has three top 10 finishes in the last five starts, including a second place in 2018.
His career average finish at Dover is 13.19, ranking him a respectable eighth among active drivers.
He also had an impressive run of nine consecutive top 10 finishes at the Monster Mile from 2011 until 2015.
On a good day, Bowyer could be a potential top 5 contender, which would greatly help his championship bid as well.
A top 3, although a bit more difficult, shouldn’t be completely out of the cards either.
Erik Jones‘ season is over as far as the championship battle is concerned following an early exit during the Round of 16.
This doesn’t mean that the Joe Gibbs driver won’t fight for better results.
Having been re-signed by JGR for 2019, Jones will be looking to gain some momentum for next season.
Dover has been a good track for him in the Cup Series.
Jones scored two top 10 finishes in three starts at the Monster Mile with JGR.
He finished fourth in last year’s edition of the Drydene 400.
A repeat is perfectly possible, which makes Jones another interesting pick for a top 5 finish.
Daniel Suarez has shown plenty of pace at Dover in the Cup Series.
The Stewart-Haas driver has four top 10 finishes in five starts, his other result being an 11th place.
His career average finish of 7.6 at the Monster Mile is second among active drivers.
Suarez scored a career best third place finish at Dover in May 2018.
He is an extremely viable pick for a top 5 finish and potentially a top 3 as well.
Jimmie Johnson‘s winless streak is now at 88 races.
His last victory came at Dover back in May 2017.
The seven-time champion has 11 career wins at the Monster Mile.
The Hendrick Motorsports driver failed to crack into the top 10 in his last two starts there, finishing 36th and 14th.
That being said, Johnson has shown more speed in the last three races.
After failing to make it to the postseason for the first time, #48 bounced back by finishing 11th, 10th and 9th.
This trend could continue at Dover.
A win is a bit of a stretch, but a top 5 or even a top 3 finish are perfectly possible.
It was a close call, but Alex Bowman managed to advance to the Round of 16.
The Hendrick Motorsports driver had a crazy race at Charlotte, getting involved in multiple incidents before climbing all the way to second place.
After this near-miss, Bowman will definitely arrive at Dover with renewed confidence.
He scored a second place at Dover earlier this year, the second in a sequence of three consecutive runner-up finishes in May.
Bowman likely won’t be fighting for the race win, but he is a solid pick for another top 3, or at least a top 5.
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