For the first time in the 73 year history of Martinsville Speedway a Nascar sanctioned event will run under lights. It’s sure to be exciting for all involved. Here’s your betting guide for the Blue Emu 500.
Odds on Odds: Blue Emu 500
Nascar fans want more short tracks. They want midweek racing. And everyone enjoys a good night race. Wednesday night, Martinsville gives us all of that and more! A track that has given us more exciting racing than any other track out there will be center-staged for a midweek duel.
It has taken a pandemic to get Nascar’s top series to race during the week. Now, they scheduled the first night race at Martinsville for a primetime spot. We have seen races finish under the lights here previously but no green flag time has been scheduled for a night race until now.
Does this change betting on the Blue Emu 500? I highly doubt it. We still expect to see the cream rise. Drivers who are traditionally good at this track will still be good. Don’t be surprised though if we see a new face come forward in this race as well.
Sunday, we saw a pretty ho-hum race and one that Kevin Harvick flat out dominated in the final stage. It saw drivers come and go but ultimately it was Harvick that rose to the top. Don’t expect the same thing from Martinsville tonight.
In fact, when looking at the betting odds for this short track under the lights there isn’t a clear cut favorite to win the Blue Emu 500. We like it that way anyway. Many people are excited for this event and should be. Rescheduled from Mother’s Day weekend, Wednesday night will see sparks, tempers and elation when the final flag flies.
Let’s dive into the betting odds for the Blue Emu 500. Odds are through Vegas Insiders. All odds subject to change prior to race time.
Betting Favorites for the Blue Emu 500
Eight former winners are in Wednesday night’s field and the betting favorite is Kyle Busch. The Candy Man has won one time in this event and looks for win three at the famed track in Virginia. Busch is on the board at +450 which has been a number he’s been stuck with for the majority of the year. It’s been a struggle for the two time and defending Cup Series champion this season but he’s a track that plays right into his wheelhouse. Look for ‘Rowdy’ to be in the running late to win.
The most recent winner at Martinsville is Martin. Martin Truex, Jr. finally picked up his first short track victory last season and it was a win that moved him to the final four. Truex goes off the board at +550 and with his third place run Sunday, he is a guy to watch Wednesday night. It’s been a rough year for him as well but something seems to be turning around and I don’t see why Truex won’t be near the front late in this race.
We might as well make it a trifecta when looking at Joe Gibbs Racing drivers. Denny Hamlin has a total of five grandfather clocks from Martinsville. Wednesday’s Blue Emu 500 will see he be a betting favorite at +900. I think the number is extremely high for a guy who’s been so good during his career at this short track.It’s his home track, one that he enjoys, look for Hamlin to be in the front early and often. He leads a lot of laps here as well. Something to keep an eye out for your DraftKings line-up.
We go from a guy who’s won five clocks to a guy looking for his first. Chase Elliott is on the board at +750 and he’s been oh so close before. In fact, he was mere laps away from punching his ticket to Homestead back in 2017 before Hamlin gave him the boot and ending his championship hopes. Look for Elliott to find his way to the front in this night race. He’s been running well so nothing looks to change for him.
The third best odds go to one of the best drivers on the circuit right now. Brad Keselowski is +600 and already has two wins. When the Cup Series was at Bristol he stole the win away when Elliott made contact with Keselowski’s teammate Joey Logano and sent them both into the wall. His luck has been good but he is also been in the right position. Look for the 2 car to be in the mix for another clock.
This list will consist of many big names but we just couldn’t consider them favorites considering their odds.
It will start off with a guy who has already won this season and has been fast everywhere. Alex Bowman has been spectacular in the 88 car this year. Despite what seemed to be a struggle of a day at Atlanta, Bowman will be right there at the short track. +2000 is probably the highest odds he’s been this season since his win at California but also not un-bet-able odds for him. Keep an eye on this car for your daily fantasy when the race goes green, he’ll be there.
The pole-sitter is Ryan Blaney. Like his Team Penske teammate Keselowski his car will be and has been fast at Martinsville. If there is a diamond in the rough for the night race look no further than Blaney. His crew chief Todd Gordon has won here with Logano and now is tasked to get the third Penske car into the playoffs before the halfway point. Luck has not been on the side of the 12 team this year. It could turn around Wednesday. Blaney is +1200.
Three former winners here are next to take a look at. Two of them have only a couple wins at Martinsville. All of them are on the board at +2000. Kurt Busch has picked up a clock at the famed track and it’s been a place he has run well at. Clint Bowyer has also won here. In fact it’s the place that he snapped a winless streak of over 100 races. Speaking of snapping streaks of over 100 races, I heard there is a champion driver in the field looking to do that.
Jimmie Johnson has not won in 100+ races. He is in the +2000 category and has nine wins at Martinsville. Rusty Wallace and Jeff Gordon each won at Martinsville in their final seasons. Is Johnson next? Look long and hard at his numbers and don’t count him out just yet.
Long Shots to Win
These drivers may not have a real good shot at winning but have the cars capable and could surprise.
Rookies don’t tend to fare too well here but if there is one in the field look no further than Tyler Reddick. The Richard Childress Racing driver has been very impressive this year. That will continue under the lights at Martinsville. It’s an old track that will be slick, that fits Reddick’s style. He along with teammate Austin Dillon are at +6600.
On the outside pole Wednesday is Aric Almirola. The Stewart Haas driver is looking for a win. Bad. He will find himself up front right away and with that starting spot he will need to take advantage early. It is a long race but one that could go any which way and for Almirola he needs to be there in the end. Almirola is on the board at +4000.
Since his return, Matt Kenseth hasn’t really been talked about. It has not been the start he was hoping for but the luck can turn around quick. High expectation were set for Kenseth when he stepped into the 42 car. That team runs well at Martinsville, maybe under the lights will be the time Kenseth comes out. He is +4000.
Underdogs To Surprise
As a former winner at Martinsville Ryan Newman is looking to grab yet another grandfather clock. What a story that would end up being should he get the win. At +9000, Newman will have his work cut out for him but at a place that is already hard to pass he makes nearly impossible.
A team that has made strides this year has been JTG Daugherty Racing. Since adding the duo of Ricky Stenhouse, Jr and crew chief Brian Patty, they have been climbing. Stenhouse is +8000 and with some good fortune might just put himself in good position to win late in the night. He has really improved and come into his own as a leader of the team. Something great could happen for Stenhouse soon.
A car that has been sweeping the news headlines all week with a driver that has been in the forefront of Nascar’s change is Bubba Wallace. Our country has fallen into hard times and Bubba has been the vocal leader in Nascar. His car this week also has made national news will be on watch all night long. All of the off-track aside, Wallace is actually really good here. Two wins in the Gander Outdoors Truck Series and listed at +125000, this may be the best shot Wallace has for a win yet this season. What a story that would be…
— NASCAR (@NASCAR) June 10, 2020
Projected Fantasy Line-up
Betting on the Blue Emu 500 is not an easy task with all the unknown. Getting a solid fantasy lineup is also going to be tough to come up with. What you can look at is recent history at the track because those drivers tend to be near but you will also have to take a big swing in the dark.
I’m excited for this race and see many good contenders. This fantasy lineup comes from DraftKings daily fantasy: Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott, Erik Jones, Ryan Newman, Tyler Reddick and Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
Not the best one I’ve had but its time to go get a win!
Match-ups, Value and Upset Picks
Sunday, I didn’t give you any match-ups because there just weren’t any that interesting. Wednesday is a different story. Two match-ups really stand out with one that I feel is also a good one.
The first match-up starts with the obvious one for me. Chase Elliott(-120) against Joey Logano(Even). They have a feud that started at the last short track race. I wouldn’t be surprised if they get together again. This is going to be a fun battle to see where it plays out. Give me Elliott over Logano in the night time.
Probably the most intriguing match-up is going to be the Ryan Newman(+115) against Matt DiBenedetto(-135) battle. The numbers are really skewed and I just like Newman’s chances in this one. My answer will go to Newman over Matty D. Former winner that’s looking for a way into the playoffs, it’ll be Newman.
My value pick this week is also a former winner. This track tends to be favorable to the veterans and there is no one in that category more hungry than Jimmie Johnson. He is +2000 which is insane for a guy who has won nine times here. On the flip side he hasn’t had a top 10 finish in the las six races here. It’s a risk versus reward. I’ll take the risk as JJ gets back to victory lane.
The upset of the day is going to be a big one. Will he win? I doubt it. Will he turn heads? Most definitely. Give me Bubba Wallace as the upset pick to watch. All eyes are already on him before turning a lap. Get near the the front and oh boy! This could be one of the better stories of the season if the unthinkable happens.
The Pick to Win the Blue Emu 500 is…?
If betting on the Blue Emu 500 wasn’t hard enough, picking a single winner will be impossible. The track record for yours truly has been decent this season though. Four wins in the first 11 races is pretty decent in my eyes. Sunday, Harvick got it done and was the selected winner, who’s going to be next?
As the theme I’ve rode this entire piece is been former winners. You’ll see a former winner in this one get it done again. Many drivers have looked good and eight of them have won this event alone. Hamlin is strong, Johnson is hungry, both Busch brothers want the win. It will be a fun spark flying night for the first time. The winner of the first night race at Martinsville Speedway and the betting pick to win the Blue Emu 500 is…
If anyone can, the Candy Man can! He is the guy who likes to be the first to do something when Nascar tries something new. He won the first Car of Tomorrow race. Following a leg injury he played the system to win his first Championship. Now, he will look to win the first race at night at the famed speedway.
I like many drivers but Kyle Busch is the one who stands out to me in Wednesday nights big battle.
The Blue Emu 500 goes green Wednesday night from Martinsville Speedway at 7:00pm ET on FS1 and MRN.
Buckle up because its bound to be a fun one!