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GEICO 500 Predictions: Chase Elliott Goes for Two Straight at Talladega

Written by: Reid Spencer
Updated April 19, 2024
10 min read
  • After breaking a long winless streak, Chase Elliott seems primed for more glory.

  • Ford drivers are winless through nine races this season. Will that change?

  • In recent Cup races at Talladega, there’s no driver better than Ryan Blaney.

GEICO 500 Betting Odds

Odds from DraftKings Sportsbook. Click the odds in the table below and get $150 in bonus bets instantly at DraftKings Sportsbook.

William Byron+1000
Ryan Blaney+1000
Brad Keselowski+1000
Joey Logano+1100
Denny Hamlin+1100
Chase Elliott+1100
Kyle Busch+1500
Bubba Wallace+1500
Ross Chastain+1600
Christopher Bell+1600
Kyle Larson+1800

Our Picks for the GEICO 500

GEICO 500 Predictions

GEICO 500 Predictions

Chase Elliott's Performance Arc Is Definitely on the Upswing

Last Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway, Chase Elliott broke a winless streak that had reached 42 races, dating to 2022.

As we noted in the preview for that race, the portents for Elliott’s victory were clearly discernible. In the two races that preceded Texas. At Richmond and Martinsville, the driver of the No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet had finished fifth and third, respectively.

Elliott’s victory gave Hendrick checkered flags in five of the first nine events of the season, a run of success that started with William Byron’s win in the season-opening Daytona 500.

It’s interesting that the NASCAR Cup Series comes to Talladega Superspeedway this weekend because that was the site of Elliott’s last win before he broke the drought at Texas.

Though Elliott has two Talladega victories on his resume, he’s not our first choice at +1100 via DraftKings Sportsbook—though two straight wins after a 42-race dry spell would make a great story.

Ford Drivers Have Their Best Shot at Victory at Talladega Superspeedway

To say that the performance of Ford teams in the NASCAR Cup Series has been disappointing this year is a massive understatement.

In the 60th anniversary of the Mustang this year, Ford introduced its Dark Horse, both on the street and on the race track.

The Dark Horse Mustang, however, is winless in the first nine races. Not that Ford drivers haven’t had their moments this season.

Reigning Cup champion Ryan Blaney led 12 laps and won the second stage of the Daytona 500 before being wiped out in a 23-car crash on the backstretch. That’s right, 23 cars.

In the second race of the season, at Atlanta, Ford drivers Austin Cindric and Michael McDowell swept the stages, but Chevy driver Daniel Suarez beat Blaney to the finish line by 0.003 seconds.

We think a Ford will find Victory Lane on Sunday. Which driver? See below.

Ryan Blaney and Talladega Superspeedway Make a Potent Combination

Ryan Blaney won the most recent race at Talladega by 0.012 seconds over William Byron, giving Blaney three victories at the track in four seasons.

As noted above, Blaney has run well in the previous two superspeedway races this season but has been thwarted by bad luck and one of the closest finishes in NASCAR history.

But we think this is Blaney’s week to avoid trouble and give Ford its first win of the season. He’s offered at +1000 via DraftKings.

We also like Ford driver Todd Gilliland to finish in the top three on Sunday at +1400 via DraftKings.

How to Watch the GEICO 500

  • What: GEICO 500 NASCAR Cup Series Race

  • Where: Talladega Superspeedway

  • When: Sunday, April 21, 3 PM ET

  • How to Watch: FOX


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Reid Spencer

222 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.

More info on Reid Spencer
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