NASCAR stock car racing is one of America’s favorite sports, and it’s getting more popular every year. The reasons that millions of fans tune into NASCAR events on Sundays throughout the year are simple. Stock car racing doesn’t have any complicated rules, so it’s easy to follow the action on the track. This also makes for uncomplicated online sports betting. The first driver past the post is the winner, simple as that.
NASCAR events also bring people together, from husbands, wives and children watching the races as a family to people throwing NASCAR barbecues with friends. Also, instead of acting like superstars, NASCAR drivers tend to be down-to-earth people from normal upbringings, so fans relate to them easily. No wonder people are so excited about the NASCAR 2022 schedule. The grueling Cup Series has already kicked off, with races all through the year until the championship race at Phoenix, Arizona, in November. With 38 events on the calendar, there’s plenty to look forward to. Let’s take a look at some of the highlights of the first half-season.
The first event in the NASCAR 2022 schedule is the Daytona 500, far and away the most prestigious event in the season. Think of it as the Super Bowl of stock car racing. Held every February since 1959 at the Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida, the Daytona 500 consists of 200 laps around a 2.5-mile tri-oval track. One of America’s best-attended and highest-rated sporting events, Daytona is a prime fan experience, as you can judge from the fact that this year’s event is already sold out. That’s more than 100,000 tickets! What’s special about this year’s Daytona is that it will mark the debut of the Next Gen NASCAR Cup Series car. The all-new design includes composite bodywork, larger brakes, wheels and tires, an independent suspension system, rear diffuser and five-speed sequential transmission. If you’re interested in NASCAR betting, 2019 and 2020 Daytona winner Denny Hamlin is odds-on to win again this year.
Auto Club Speedway
The NASCAR Cup Series returns to the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California, in the second event of the season. The track didn’t host a NASCAR race last year, but all the top drivers will be there on February 27 to compete on Fontana’s five-wide, high-speed 2-mile oval. It’ll be the first intermediate track race to host the Next Gen car, as well as the first race with NASCAR’s new speedway rules package that covers a 670-horsepower engine and 4-inch spoiler. How well drivers adapt to the new car and the new rules will have an important influence on NASCAR odds going forward. (All speedways will use the package except for Daytona, Talladega and Atlanta.) The 2022 edition of the race also happens to coincide with Auto Club Speedway’s 25th anniversary celebration, so it’s likely there’ll be a big party atmosphere at the track.
Atlanta Motor Speedway
Fans can expect a style of racing never seen before at the NASCAR event to be held at the all-new Atlanta Motor Speedway on March 20. For the first time, AMS competitors will be fielding super-speedway cars. What’s more, they’ll be driving on a repaved 1.54-mile quad oval track with steeper banking in the turns (increased from 24 to 28 degrees) and a narrower racing surface. This combination is bound to produce racing that’s tighter and more intense than anything previously experienced at the Georgia track. The result is expected to resemble the kind of pack racing associated with Talladega and Daytona.
After testing the surface, last year’s winner Kurt Busch said to NBCSports, “Once we got out there in a group, the pace picked up by over a second having the cars draft together. There’s a lot of speed that you have by yourself and things were amplified way more than what we expected when we had just three cars drafting with each other.”
Circuit of the Americas
The Circuit of the Americas racetrack hosted the inaugural NASCAR Cup Series EchoPark Automotive Texas Grand Prix in May last year. Heavy rains and poor visibility resulted in two crashes, and the race had to be cut 14 laps short. Chase Elliott was the eventual winner. This year, the event has moved to the final day of the weekend of March 25–27, alongside races in the NASCAR Xfinity Series and Camping World Truck Series. The Next Gen car is expected to perform well on the 3.4-mile track, which also hosts Formula One and other road-racing events throughout the year.
World Wide Technology Raceway
The World Wide Technology Raceway is a 1.25-mile oval in Madison, Illinois, close to the iconic Gateway Arch of St Louis. Already a fixture on the NHRA and IndyCar series, “Gateway,” as the track is known locally, is hosting its first NASCAR Cup Series race on June 5. The course is oval and flat, with the first two turns making up the tight end. This is likely to provide drivers and teams with an interesting challenge. The two corners demand completely different strategies and braking techniques, and drivers who miss a corner will pay the price on the long straights. Combined with the fact that drivers will be racing in Next Gen cars, this should be a very exciting race that will generate a whole new set of NASCAR betting odds.
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