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Enjoy Illinois 300 NASCAR Preview and Pick

Enjoy Illinois 300 NASCAR Preview and Pick

ENJOY ILLINOIS 300 NASCAR PREVIEW AND PICK – Welcome back to another Sunday with a little NASCAR action. We are headed to World Wide Technology Raceway located in Madison, Illinois, just across the river from St. Louis at 3:30 EST. If you’re like me, you just had to look at a map of the midwest, because I had no idea that southern Illinois bordered St. Louis, Missouri.

Anyways, the track formerly known as Gateway Motorsports Park is a flat oval measuring a little over a mile in length at 1.250 miles. From a handicapping perspective, this one is a little bit tricky. The other flat tracks we’ve seen this year have run the low-downforce package because they’ve been run on tracks measuring a mile or less. This is the first flat track we’ve seen where they’ll run the intermediate equipment, because this track is just a little bit longer.

My inclination is to take guys who have historically raced well on flat tracks like Phoenix and Richmond, while also paying attention to their results using the intermediate packages this season. This isn’t the most novel or perhaps fruitful approach, but we just don’t have a ton of relevant comps for this race from earlier in the season.

Last season, the qualifying and practice times were a pretty reliable indicator of who was fast and who wasn’t. There weren’t any major shockers in terms of guys making adjustments at the last minute to suddenly gain some speed. That’s the sort of fundamental approach I’m taking: look at qualifying and practice times, find a fast car.

Well, I’ve done just that for you.

Kyle Busch to win (+600)

I’ll get right out in front of this. This is not a sexy price, and I should’ve just written this up earlier when he was still in the neighborhood of +1000 which is where I bet him at earlier in the week. Since then, he has done nothing to dissuade me from this pick.

First of all, he was the fastest in qualifying, so he’s going to start out in the pole position. This is the first time he’s claimed the pole position since he moved to Richard Childress Racing, so clearly the team is starting to figure some things out in a big way.

Kyle Busch raced really well here last year. He actually scored the most NASCAR Cup points by virtue of leading for 66 laps, before getting edged out by 0.655 seconds to finish second to Joey Logano. I like his chances this year in equipment that has performed pretty well on intermediate tracks. He’s clearly great here, ran great in qualifying, and has posted good results on intermediates. What I’m saying is: what’s not to like?

You may not get rich off this bet, but we can cash a ticket and build up that bankroll for down the road when we see some sexy long shots.

Pick: Kyle Busch to Win (+600)

Be sure to check out more of my Dispatches here


  • Nate Perry, Senior Analyst #NoPickNate

    Nate Perry is a career college educator and literary writer who tends bar to get the inside scoop on sports. He makes his living in hardscrabble downtown Reno, Nevada. A sports handicapper by trade, Nate is legendary at the sportsbook in Reno. If you can gamble on it, chances are Nate has tried his hand at it. He's a former fiction writer who has turned to writing about sports in a desperate bid to get published, much to the chagrin of nearly everyone around him. He is featured here with his extremely large dog, Boatswain.

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