Friday, September 29, 2023

NASCAR Trucks: Best Bets for the NextEra Energy 250 at Daytona

Dale Tanhardt brings you his best picks for the 2022 NextEra Energy 250 at Daytona International Speedway, the season-opener for the NASCAR Camping World Trucks Series
Dale Tanhardt brings you his best picks for the 2022 NextEra Energy 250 at Daytona International Speedway, the first race of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season. PC: James Gilbert/Getty Images

Ladies and gentlemen, Truck Night in America is upon us. It’s been a lengthy offseason, but it is now time to deliver my best NASCAR Camping World Truck Series bets for the season-opening NextEra Energy 250 on Friday night.

I get goosebumps thinking about it all.

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It truly excites me to think about what we were able to do to solidify NASCAR Trucks in 2021 as an exciting series to watch, bet on, and even attend. I was able to easily convince a group of about 40 people who had never watched nor cared about NASCAR to attend the NASCAR Truck Series race at Nashville last year. And not only did they attend, they arrived and left in a party bus.

The majority of the group also rode my truck bets with me that night. Before that race, I was up about 50 Units on the season in that series alone. Of course, that ended up being my worst betting card of the year – the one time I have a massive group of people riding my picks in person.

What’s the point of all this? Well, it proves that betting alone can attract new fans. That entire deal happened because of betting – because of my successes and the ability of Garage Guys to paint an energetic, exciting picture of what NASCAR is all about while also being efficient in providing a solid ROI to our followers through NASCAR betting picks.

The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series provides a betting experience that is so raw and unpredictable compared to what happens in the NASCAR Cup and Xfinity Series’. There has been some progression of knowledge compared to the beginning of last year due to NASCAR’s efforts to truly expand their betting presence in North America, but I still believe bookmakers just don’t know enough about trucks.

If you’re new to the series, welcome. It’s gonna be a super fun year. It always is. There’s so much young blood and inexperience littered throughout this series that it naturally creates entertainment all season long.

But, you’re not just here for entertainment. You’re here for winners. 

Let’s get right into it.

RELATED: NASCAR Bets: The Four Best Long-Shot Plays for 2022 Daytona 500

*All lines via DraftKings Sportsbook

NextEra Energy 250 Best Bets

Grant Enfinger: +1400 to Win, +400 for a Top 3

Grant Enfinger is one of the best superspeedway racers in this series, validated by his success over the past five years. Enfinger has finished every single one of his 7 Daytona starts in the Top 20.

The man knows how to survive the ‘Russian Roulette’ that is Daytona. But that’s not all: he has 3 Top 10’s, 2 Top 2’s, and 1 win in those 7 starts. Things will look different for Enfinger this season, as he moves to GMS Racing full-time after racing part-time in 2021 with two different teams.

Enfinger is a championship-caliber driver who was shafted from ThorSport Racing last season over lack of sponsorship. I love the narrative here that Grant has much to prove after not even being allowed to compete for a title last year after winning four races and making the Championship 4 in 2020.

GMS won three races in a row at Daytona from 2016-2018 before going winless the next three seasons here. Don’t be surprised if they reign supreme again with Enfinger at the helm.

Ben Rhodes: +1400 to Win, +400 for a Top 3

I’m stunned that Rhodes is not a favorite or at least a co-favorite to John Hunter Nemechek. Ben Rhodes is one of the best superspeedway racers in this field.

As inexperience floods the 2022 field of drivers, Rhodes brings success, experience, and momentum into Daytona. The 2021 series champion also is the defending winner of this race and has 3 Top 10’s, 2 Top 5’s and 1 win in 6 starts.

55 total laps led in those six races shows that Rhodes is a guy who runs up front more often than not. As a diehard trucks guy, I can tell you that he passes the eye test. To me, he’s essentially the Joey Logano of this series with his aggression, blocking, and calculated ability to be there at the end in most of these superspeedway races.

ThorSport also boasts a large four-team lineup on Friday night, so there’s potential for calculated teamwork from the Toyota’s throughout the night.

The value of this play is sky-high. Book Rhodes as a top play.

Matt DiBenedetto: +1200 to win, +300 for a Top 3 

Matty D. adds an element to the series that we haven’t seen in a while: a former Cup driver who underwhelmed drops down to the truck series in order to reestablish his career. For the diehards out there, remember how guys like Ron Hornaday, Johnny Benson, Todd Bodine, Bobby Hamilton, Ted Musgrave, Johnny Sauter, and Mike Skinner did?

If you’re new to the show: those guys, very similar to Matty D, didn’t work out in Cup Series competition. They then went on to become multi-time winners and champions of the truck series.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Matty D. followed the footsteps of these drivers and became a superstar of the series. He has the talent, and for Daytona, he’s got the experience and success to come out and win this race on Friday night as he will pilot the #25 Rackley W.A.R. Chevy.

This is a guy who was literally so close to claiming victory at Talladega twice in the Cup Series. He’s also a guy who consistently ran up front at Daytona, but always seemed to be unable to avoid the late-race crashes.

Fast forward to now: He steps down to some lesser competition, and I think he will be in a fast track, as it’s a GMS-aligned machine. I expect to see Matt D have a strong opening run and contend for the win.

One of the following finishes in the Top 5: Colby Howard +1100, Spencer Boyd +1100, Timmy Hill +1100, Lawless Alan +1100, Jesse Little +2200

Bare with me here, and listen to what could be my boldest prediction ever:

I am calling it The Underdog Top 5 MFL (Mortal F***ing Lock). At least one of these guys will finish in the Top 5 on Friday night. Literally, put like a dollar on each and you’ll see positive ROI, and I’ll tell you why.

Here’s a list of massive underdog drivers to finish in the Top 5 in NASCAR Camping World Truck races at Daytona since 2015:

2015: Ray Black Jr. (SS Green Light Racing)
2015: Scott Lagasee Jr. (NTS Motorsports)
2016: Travis Kvapil (MAKE Motorsports)
2017: Austin Wayne Self (AM Racing)
2017: Joe Nemechek (NEMCO Motorsports)
2018: Scott Lagasse Jr. (Young’s Motorsports)
2019: Spencer Boyd (Young’s Motorsports) (winner at Talladega in 2019, as well)
2020: Jordan Anderson (Jordan Anderson Racing)
2020: Codie Rohrbaugh (CR7 Motorsports)
2020: Natalie Decker (Niece Motorsports)
2021: Jordan Anderson (Jordan Anderson Racing) (not so much of an underdog anymore)
2021: Cory Roper (Roper Racing Team)
2021: Carson Hocevar (Niece Motorsports)

Crazy isn’t it? There will be wrecks. There will be some big-hitters and favorites that get taken out of this race. I like my chances. Watch for some of these guys to scavenge positions and end up with strong runs.

Ladies and gentlemen, Truck Night in America is back. Let’s bankrupt the books together.

NASCAR Trucks DFS Plays for DraftKings

Ben Rhodes $9,700

Matt Dibenedetto $10,300

Riley Herbst $9,900

Timmy Hill $5,100

Colby Howard $5,000

Hallie Deegan $6,900

For my entire NASCAR Camping World Truck Series betting card for the Next Era Energy 250 at Daytona (with specific unit allocations that will be posted closer to the start of the race) follow me @daletanhardt on Twitter here and join the Garage Guys Discord Channel here

Dale Tanhardt
Dale Tanhardt
Undisputed Greatest NASCAR Bettor in the Universe.

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