Denny Hamlin will be looking to take home the checkered flag for the third time in four years when he hits the track on Sunday for the 64th running of the Daytona 500 as a +850 betting favourite at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
Last year, Hamlin led for the most laps on his way to a fifth-place finish after claiming victory at the event in both 2019 and 2020. That recent success leaves Hamlin poised to become one of just three drivers to tally four or more career wins in the Daytona 500 when he returns to action for Sunday afternoon’s race at Daytona International Speedway.
Hamlin is coming off another solid campaign in 2021. The 41-year-old finished among the top 10 in 25 of 36 race appearances including victories at the Southern 500 and the South Point 400, and closed out the season in third place in the NASCAR Cup Series standings. However, Hamlin opened the 2022 NASCAR season on a disappointing note two weeks ago, finishing a distant 23rd at the inaugural Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum.
Chase Elliott closely trails Hamlin as a +1000 second favourite on the Daytona 500 odds, just ahead of Kyle Larson at +1100, while Joey Logano joins Ryan Blaney at +1200. Elliott fell just short of a second straight NASCAR Cup title last season, finishing in fourth place, just two points back of Hamlin. The 26-year-old also tallied a pair of wins last season, and turned in a career-best second-place finish at last year’s Daytona 500.
Kyle Larson returns to Daytona as the NASCAR Cup Series defending champion after racking up 10 overall victories in 2021, including wins in four of his final five race appearances of the season. But while the 29-year-old has finished among the top 10 in four of his past six appearances, including a 10th-place performance last year, he has yet to claim the checkered flag at the Daytona 500.
Joey Logano returns to Daytona on a high after earning the win at the Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum. The 31-year-old also claimed the NASCAR Cup Series title in 2015, and will be gunning for his first victory at the Daytona 500 since 2015. Blaney posted three wins to record a seventh-place finish in last year’s NASCAR Cup Series standings. The 28-year-old has also turned in a pair of second-place performances at the Daytona 500, but has also finished no better than 30th at this race in two of the past three years.
Further down the Daytona 500 odds for this weekend, William Byron sits at +1400. Kyle Busch is knotted with Martin Truex Jr. at +1600 on the odds, while last year’s race winner Michael McDowell lags as a longshot +6600 wager.