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Xfinity 500 Predictions: Kyle Larson Looks to Rebound after Homestead

Written by: Reid Spencer
Updated October 27, 2023
11 min read
  • Denny Hamlin needs to win, but is he a reliable pick at his best track?
  • AJ Allmendinger came through last week, and he’s an underdog again.
  • The last thing Kyle Larson wants to do is roll out the barrels at Martinsville.

Xfinity 500 Betting Odds

Odds taken from DraftKings Sportsbook.

Denny Hamlin+300
Kyle Larson+650
William Byron+750
Martin Truex Jr.+850
Ryan Blaney+900
Brad Keselowski+1000
Tyler Reddick+1300
Joey Logano+1400
Kevin Harvick+1600
Chase Elliott+1600
Kyle Busch+1700

Our Picks for the Xfinity 500

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Xfinity 500 Predictions

Xfinity 500 Predictions

Denny Hamlin Faces Must-Win Scenario at Very Short Odds

You can’t blame Denny Hamlin for exuding confidence entering Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series Round of 8 elimination race at Martinsville Speedway.

After all, Hamlin is the leading active winner at the 0.526-mile short track with five victories, and he needs a victory to advance to the Championship 4 the following Sunday at Phoenix Raceway.

Hamlin has been fast all season, and he was cruising to a top-five finish last Sunday at Homestead, when the steering broke on his No. 11 Toyota and sent the car rocketing into the outside wall.

The resulting 30th-place finish left Hamlin 17 points below the current cut line for the Championship 4.

Though Hamlin is optimistic about his chances this weekend, we take it with a grain of salt. Though he professes to thrive in chaos, Hamlin hasn’t been a consistently dependable quantity in high-pressure situations.

Accordingly, we’re steering clear of Hamlin as the favorite at +300 via DraftKings Sportsbook.

Will AJ Allmendinger Make Us Look Like Geniuses Again This Week?

Last Sunday at Homestead-Miami Speedway, we picked unheralded AJ Allmendinger to finish in the top five at +2000 via DraftKings.

Sure enough, the Dinger finished fifth, producing a handsome payoff, and we’re willing to take a fraction of that loot and bet on him to run third (+4500) and fifth (+2000) on Sunday at Martinsville.

Admittedly, this is a long-shot proposition. In his last three NASCAR Cup Series starts at the track, Allmendinger hasn’t finished better than 23rd.

But Allmendinger also has a pair of runner-up results at NASCAR Cup’s shortest speedway, and his Kaulig Racing cars have gained considerable speed of late.

In addition, AJ’s fate for 2024 is uncertain (whether he will run Cup or Xfinity for Kaulig), and he’ll be motivated to excel in what could be his last Cup start at the track.

Kyle Larson Looks to Rebound from His “Barrel Race” at Homestead

Late in last Sunday’s race at Homestead, Kyle Larson appeared the likely winner—until he came in hot to pit road with just over 40 laps left, swerved to avoid the Ford of Ryan Blaney and destroyed the sand barrels at the entrance to pit lane.

The encounter with the barrels knocked Larson out of the race. Fortunately for the driver of the No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet, he had already qualified for the Championship 4 by winning the week before at Las Vegas.

Martinsville would be an ideal place for Larson to regain the momentum he squandered at Homestead. In 17 Martinsville starts, Larson has one victory, one pole and four top fives. His last two races there have produced a second and a victory.

We think Larson is a better pick than Denny Hamlin to win on Sunday, and his odds are better, too—+650 via DraftKings.

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How to Watch the Xfinity 500

  • Race: Xfinity 500 NASCAR Cup Series race
  • Location: Martinsville Speedway
  • Time: Sunday, Oct. 29, 2 p.m. ET
  • How to Watch: NBC
Image for Reid Spencer


Reid Spencer

218 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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