Betting 101: How to bet on NASCAR for beginners – USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire

Wagering on NASCAR can be a daunting task for first-time bettors. In fact, you might lose a good chunk of money right off the bat if you simply try to pick a winner for each race out of a sea of drivers competing for the checkered flag. Luckily, there are more than a few ways to win money without having to choose the driver who will be doing celebratory burnouts before pulling into Victory Lane.

NASCAR betting: Ways to bet

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  • Choose the winner: Easily the most difficult. Similar to a moneyline bet in other sports, you will pick the driver who will win the race outright. There are tools you can use, such as Average-Finish Position (AFP) across previous races at a track, NASCAR Loop Data from previous stops, and knowing a driver’s production on certain types of tracks – flat tracks, intermediate, short tracks, superspeedways for example. If you hit on the winning driver, it can pay off handsomely, but it’s far more difficult than it sounds.
  • Selecting a driver to finish in the Top 3: If you like a driver, but aren’t confident of his finishing and winning the race, you can bet on him to finish inside the Top 3. This will not pay off nearly as well as an outright win, but it can still be rather lucrative. Sometimes the driver with the best car