It’s another short week for NASCAR as Cup Series drivers ready for the Alsco Uniforms 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Wednesday. This after Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600 that checked in at 4 hours and 29 minutes, making it the longest race in NASCAR history.
Fortunately, they’re racing at the same track they ran on Sunday, so drivers and crew don’t have to deal with any travel issues. Still, with only three days between races, drivers have to try and refocus, and rehydrate, quicker than usual.
Tyler Reddick, who finished eighth Sunday at Charlotte, told reporters the tight schedule does require a bit of an adjustment.
“The biggest challenge is you normally have two or three days to really amp yourself up and get ready to go, being there at the race track, seeing fans, practicing, qualifying, watching the other races,” Reddick said. “I think that’s another thing that on the Cup side, you’re so used to seeing the Truck race and Xfinity race get some action, and let that sink into your brain and your body that you’re going racing tomorrow. We haven’t had any of that.”
Alsco Uniforms 500 Odds
|Martin Truex Jr.||4/1|
Source: William Hill
Unlike Sunday, there will be no qualifying for Wednesday’s race. Instead, drivers will start 1 through 20 in the reverse order of where they finished at the Coca-Cola 600. This means William Byron will get the pole and Sunday’s winner, Brad Keselowski, will start 20th.
So who will be able to overcome the short break and prevail at the Alsco Uniforms 500? Here are our thoughts.
Drivers to Consider
Chase Elliott 5/1
A questionable decision by Elliott’s crew chief Al Gustafson to pit his driver with two laps remaining during a caution might have cost Elliott the victory. Elliott, who was leading when the caution flag came out, defended his crew chief, but was still fuming about the loss.
“You just make the best decision you can, based on the information you have,” Elliott said. “When you are leading the race like that, people behind you are going to do the exact opposite of what you do. That was the situation we were put in. Al [Gustafson] made the decision, we stuck with it, and it didn’t work out.”
Elliott has a shorter race in Wednesday’s Alsco Uniforms 500, and should be near the lead again at Charlotte.
Alex Bowman 9/1
Bowman won the first two stages at the Coca-Cola 600, but faded at the end, finishing 19th. He excels with the 550-horsepower package and led 164 laps on Sunday.
“That finish does not show how great of a Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE we had today in Charlotte,” Bowman said after the race. “We won two stages, led over 160 laps and really had a solid car.”
Drivers to Avoid
Kyle Busch 7/1
I am going to pick against the boys running Toyotas because they seemed to flounder a bit at Charlotte on Sunday. Busch did finish fifth, but said he didn’t feel like his car was that fast.
He may be able to bounce back at the Alsco Uniforms 500, but we’re going to take a pass on him.
Martin Truex Jr. 4/1
Truex is the favorite for this race and is another driver that had a chance to win on Sunday before a messy pit stop cost him position late in the race.
Will Truex make up for his crew’s mistake on Sunday? Probably, but at 4/1, I don’t like the odds to take a flyer on a Toyota race car that didn’t really impress at Charlotte.