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For the first exhibition race of the 2013 Sprint Cup season, NASCAR has decided to switch things up a bit, and have the most fan-involved race in the history of the sport. The format of the new Sprint Unlimited stipulates that a fan vote will determine the starting order of the race when it gets underway on Saturday night, February 16th.
To be able to cast a vote, fans must be on site at Daytona International Speedway to be able to participate. There will be four stations set up where fans will be able to vote for the starting grid, or once on the grounds fans will be able to text in their vote.
Voting will open at 9:30am ET and conclude a few hours before the race at 4pm ET.
There are three ways a fan can vote for a different lineup. The first is to have the lineup set by the career win totals of the drivers. The second would be to have the lineup set by the final 2012 point standings. And finally, there is the option to set the grid by the point in the season that each driver won their pole.
Despite the fact that we won’t know the order of the start of the race until a few hours before the green flag is waved, Bovada Sportsbook has already formed betting odds for the 2013 Sprint Unlimited.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. is the favorite to win the Daytona 500 next Sunday, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that he is also favored to win the Sprint Unlimited a week earlier. Earnhardt has been set at 15/2 (+750) on the betting line at Bovada to take the checkered flag at this exhibition race. If he takes home the checkers, bettors win $7.50 for every $1 wagered plus the original dollar.
Kyle Busch is situated right behind Earnhardt, paying out 9/1 (+900, bet $1 to win $9) to win, but then there are a number of drivers coming in not far behind.
Kevin Harvick and Tony Stewart head up the group sitting with an even 10 to 1 odds (+1000) which is a bit surprising considering their past performances on the Super Speedway. Bet on either one of the them to win and you could walk away with a $10 profit from every dollar you risk… if they finish first.
Behind that group it’s Jimmie Johnson, and the 2012 Daytona 500 champion, Matt Kenseth. Both drivers have been granted +1100 odds (11/1) which pays slightly better than Harvick, Stewart and the other drivers that are favored above them. Risk just a single dollar to win $11 should Kenseth or Johnson beat the field to the stripe.
The group at 12/1 (+1200) has several big names including Carl Edwards, Denny Hamlin, Greg Biffle, Jeff Gordon, and Kasey Kahne. Unfortunately, to win the bet, you’ve got to pick just one of those guys to finish first but if you do, and you pick wins the race, a nice payout will be coming your way to the tune of $12 in profit for every dollar risked.
There are more driver’s odds to view below which cover the majority of the field. Going way down the list to get someone at 30/1 or even 50/1 isn’t a terrible decision as this is only an exhibition race. Plus, there will be a lot of unknowns with the element of fan voting in the mix. The point being, we really don’t know how this one is going to turn out and if past exhibition races have shown us anything it would be that anybody can win on any given Saturday Night.
2013 Sprint Unlimited Betting Odds – Found At Bovada Sportsbook, February 13th, 2013