2022 Goodyear 400 at Darlington Predictions and Pick
Chase Elliott may not have been my top pick at Dover, but he was among my top contenders for last week’s race. Elliott led the final 53 laps en route to his first victory of the season.
This week, the NASCAR Cup Series heads to Darlington for throwback weekend. Every driver will have a throwback paint scheme as NASCAR holds its annual throwback weekend.
Darlington is one of the toughest tracks on the circuit. It always brings plenty of excitement, and we should see the same this weekend. Here are my favorite betting picks for the 2022 Goodyear 400.
Denny Hamlin (+600)
Denny Hamlin has had a rough start to the 2022 season, but it looked like he would turn things around at Dover. Hamlin led 67 laps en route to winning Stage 1. He had an issue on pit road but drove back into the top-five. Unfortunately, he crashed while running in the top five.
The speed has been there for Hamlin, but bad luck continues to follow him. I don’t think we’ll see that as Hamlin heads to his best track. Check out his Darlington numbers.
- 19 starts
- 4 wins
- 11 top-five finishes
- 15 top 10 finishes
- 744 laps led
- 7.1 average finish
It only took him five starts to capture his first Darlington victory. He has been on fire in his last five starts at the track. He has two wins and four top-five finishes. Hamlin led 146 laps en route to his fourth Darlington victory in last year’s Summer race.
Hamlin loves this track so much that he runs his lone Xfinity Series race at Darlington every season. Feel free to check out my top picks for Xfinity Series racing at Darlington.
I fully expect Hamlin in contention for another Darlington victory.
Kyle Busch (+1000)
Once Denny Hamlin had his issues at Dover, Kyle Busch had the car to beat. He led a race-high 103 laps and was in position to score his second victory of the season. Unfortunately, an untimely caution sent him outside the top 15 with less than 100 laps to go.
Busch is flying under the radar in 2022. He is third in the standings, with eight top 10 finishes in 11 races. Busch shouldn’t have an issue adding to that total at Darlington.
He only has one victory at the track, but we’ve seen him in contention. Busch had three finishes outside the top 20 in his first five Darlington starts. Check out his numbers since that stretch.
- 15 starts
- 5 top-five finishes
- 11 top 10 finishes
- 553 laps led
- 9.1 average finish
Busch had issues in two of the last five Darlington races. Without those, his average finish would be 5.8. He hasn’t scored a victory since 2008, but it’s only a matter of time. Joe Gibbs Racing is great at Darlington, and he has been their best driver in 2022.
He could put last week’s bad luck behind him with a victory.
Ross Chastain (+1100)
It has been a fantastic season for Ross Chastain. He entered the season as a borderline playoff driver, but he has become a full-on championship contender. Chastain leads the Cup Series with two wins and seven top-five finishes.
He led 86 laps at Dover and was on the front row for the final restart. Chastain lost the lead to Chase Elliott and eventually fell back to third.
This is the first season we’ve seen him consistently in contention. He doesn’t have much past success in the Cup Series, but last year’s Summer race at Darlington is an exception.
- Starting Position: 23rd
- Stage 1 Finish: 9th
- Stage 2 Finish: 3rd
- Race Finish: 3rd
- Driver Rating: 105.0 (5th)
Chastain wasn’t in contention much last season, but he was one of the drivers to beat at Darlington. Denny Hamlin and Kyle Larson were the dominant cars, but Chastain was right with them.
This season, Chastain is running so well that I’d pick him to win anywhere. The best NASCAR betting sites are starting to realize Chastain is a weekly contender. His success in last Summer’s Darlington race only gives me more confidence for this week.
Joey Logano (+1600)
It’s not often you see Joey Logano running outside the top 20, but his team didn’t have it at Dover. Logano was nowhere near contending for a good finish. He finished four laps down in 29th.
Logano had a solid start to the season, but he has finished outside the top 15 in four of his last six races. I wouldn’t think of Darlington as one of his better tracks, but he has a few solid finishes in his previous four races.
- 2020: 6th
- 2020: 3rd
- 2021: 13th
- 2021: 8th
That streak would likely be four straight top 10 finishes, but Logano had a speeding penalty in this race last year. Logano was fourth on the final pit stop when he had the penalty.
He led 19 laps in the first 2020 race. We haven’t seen him lead many laps at Darlington, but his consistency has me feeling good about his chances.
Logano is in a rough patch, but his odds present too much value not to put in my top picks. He can turn things around at any time, and Darlington could be that track. He is one to watch for Sunday’s race.
2022 Goodyear 400 DFS Picks and Lineup
Alex Bowman and Ross Chastain were top contenders in my DFS lineup, but no one else was in contention at Dover. Let’s see who makes my DFS lineup for the 2022 Goodyear 400.
Top DFS Picks for the Goodyear 400
- Kyle Larson ($11,000)
- Kevin Harvick ($8,800)
- Christopher Bell ($8,300)
It’s not often Kyle Larson finds his way into my DFS lineup, but I made sure to leave room for the Darlington favorite.
Larson has never won at Darlington, but he has finished top three in five of his last six starts. He has led 44+ laps in five of those six races. The laps led are why I wanted Larson to lead my DFS lineup.
Kevin Harvick continues to run just okay in 2022. We’re not seeing him in race-winning contention, but he scores solid finishes. He has 12 straight top 10 finishes at Darlington, including his performance in last year’s races.
|Finishing Position||Laps Led|
I wouldn’t count on him leading laps on Sunday, but it’d go a long way towards a great DFS performance.
Christopher Bell has quietly turned around his season. He has four top 10 finishes in his last six races, including a fourth-place finish at Dover. Bell doesn’t have a top 10 finish at Darlington, but that doesn’t tell the story.
Bell was running top-five in both Darlington races last season but had an issue. His recent success gives me confidence in a potential top-five finish.
2022 Goodyear 400 Full DFS Lineup
- Kyle Larson ($11,000)
- Kevin Harvick ($8,800)
- Christopher Bell ($8,300)
- Erik Jones ($7,700)
- Kurt Busch ($7,300)
- Chris Buescher ($6,900)
We’re starting to see more speed from Erik Jones. He is coming off back-to-back top 10 finishes and heads to his best track. He started his Darlington career with six top 10 finishes, including a victory in the 2018 Southern 500.
It wouldn’t surprise me if he contended for a top-five finish. I expect a top 10 finish, with top 15 being his floor.
I wanted to include Kurt Busch among my top picks, but his price was way too low to pass up. Busch crashed in this race last season, but check out his numbers in his previous seven incident-free races.
- 2 top-five finishes
- 6 top 10 finishes
- 112 laps led
- 6.9 average finish
He hasn’t had much success with 23XI Racing, but this is a good chance to turn things around.
Did you know that Chris Buescher was one of four drivers to finish top 10 in both Darlington races last season? An eighth-place finish at Dover gave him four top 15 finishes in his last five races.
We’re starting to see more speed from Roush Fenway Keselowski Racing. It’s hard to see Buescher finishing outside the top 15 at Darlington.
Who Will Win the 2022 Goodyear 400?
Before last week, I would’ve been hesitant to make this selection. However, Denny Hamlin’s performance at Dover showed he can still compete for wins. Because of that, I can’t pick against him at his best track.
Hamlin ended a long winless streak in last year’s Summer race at Darlington. He already has a win in 2022, but a victory at Darlington would feel like breaking a rough patch. He’ll be tough to beat on Sunday.
Fans can watch Sunday’s race at 3:30 p.m. ET on FS1. Head over to Bovada to wager on the 2022 Goodyear 400.