Federated Auto Parts 400 Picks, Odds, & Predictions 9/12/2020
Race: Federated Auto Parts 400
Date: Saturday, September 12, 2020 at 7:30 PM EST
Location: Richmond Raceway VA
Over a three day period, Richmond Raceway will play host to four races and one of these is set to take place Saturday night in what is the second race in the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs. This race is the third race of the season on a short-track and will be the first of a back to back in the Round of 16. Next week comes the second half of the back to back in Bristol and is an elimination race. The pressure is on and those that are trying to make a run at the Cup championship better get going because it's looking like Kevin Harvick might run away with it.
Federated Auto Parts 400
In another show of great racing (and a little luck), Kevin Harvick took the checkered flag in Darlington last Sunday. It was looking as though either Chase Elliott or Martin Truex Jr. would be getting a victory in the first race of the playoffs. However, Harvick was the recipient of some good fortune when Truex Jr. and Elliot pushed one another into the wall late in the race. This propelled Harvick into first place and he was able to take home the victory in the playoff opener. For most of the final stage, Elliott and Truex Jr. were battling for first with Kevin Harvick more than 4 seconds behind them. Truex Jr. led this race for 196 laps. Unfortunately for them, an accident was all it took for Harvick to continue his dominant streak and leave Darlington victorious. The crash caused Elliot to finish in 20th place while Truex Jr. ended the race in 22nd place. Wrapping up the top three was Austin Dillion in 2nd place and Joey Logano in third.
2020 Cup Series Standings Update
With this victory, Kevin Harvick was able to put more distance between him and the rest of the field in the race for the Cup. Harvick (the 2014 NASCAR Cup Series champion) is up by 19 points over Denny Hamlin and he'll be looking to extend that lead when he gets in his car at Richmond Raceway on Saturday night. As of today, Harvick is the points leader with 2,106 points, 8 wins and 18 top 5 finishes. Denny Hamlin is in second place with 2,087 points, 6 wins and 15 top 5 finishes. 27 points behind Hamlin is Joey Logano who has compiled 2,060 points on the season with 2 wins and 7 top 5 finishes.
As with any race at this point, we're in the high stakes part of the season. This weekend's race at Richmond Raceway will play a huge role in deciding which drivers will complete the 12 driver playoff lineup and will also decide the seeding for these drivers. That said, this race could get ugly with drivers scratching and clawing for every inch.
Harvick will start on the poll and along with Martin Truex Jr., he is a 7-2 favorite in this race. Truex Jr. has a great shot and getting a victory in this race as he's been racing well and he's notoriously known for racing well on short tracks. In fact, Martin Truex Jr. is the most recent short track winner when he notched his only win of the season back in June at Martinsville Speedway. Denny Hamlin is a close third in the odds being listed at 4-1. At Richmond, Hamlin has three career wins so it isn't out of the question that he might finish first in this race.
Federated Auto Parts 400
Kevin Harvick 7-2
Martin Truex Jr. 7-2
Denny Hamlin 4-1
Kyle Busch 5-1
Brad Keselowski 17-2
Joey Logano 14-1
Chase Elliott 15-1
Aric Almirola 25-1
Ryan Blaney 25-1
Kurt Busch 40-1
Erik Jones 40-1
William Byron 50-1
Clint Bowyer 50-1
Jimmie Johnson 50-1
Matt DiBenedetto 60-1
Alex Bowman 60-1
Tyler Reddick 100-1
Matt Kenseth 100-1
Austin Dillon 100-1
Christopher Bell 100-1
Who will win this event at Richmond? When it comes down to this part of the season, it's hard to make picks. There is so much on the line. However, we like Truex Jr. in this race. He is a solid racer on short tracks, and was in line to take home the victory last weekend had he not been in an accident.
Josh's Pick: Take Martin Truex Jr. (7-2)
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