2022 Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma NASCAR Predictions and Pick

| June 9, 2022 6:13 am PDT

There wasn’t much to like about my NASCAR picks for last week’s race at Gateway. It was the first Cup Series race at the track, so I believe I deserve a pass. We should have much more success with this week’s race.

The NASCAR Cup Series will have its second road course race of the season as they head to Sonoma Raceway. The first road course race of 2022 brought a thrilling last-lap battle, with Ross Chastain coming out on top.

Check out my Toyota/Save Mart 350 predictions.

Chase Elliott (+500)

Chase Elliott looked like a strong contender early in last week’s race at Gateway. However, contact with Ross Chastain led to a midrace spin. Elliott never recovered, finishing 21st. Three straight finishes outside the top 20 might worry fans, but you can’t have NASCAR betting picks at a road course and not include Elliott.

Elliott likely isn’t halfway through his Cup Series career, but I’d already consider him one of the greatest road course drivers ever. Because of that, you have to include him in your Toyota/Save Mart 350 picks.

Check out his road course numbers.

  • 20 starts
  • 7 wins
  • 12 top-five finishes
  • 14 top 10 finishes
  • 7.7 average finish
  • 342 laps led

The only drivers that can match his road course numbers are Jeff Gordon and Tony Stewart. We know neither driver has competed in the Cup Series since 2016. That’s why the Toyota/Save Mart 350 betting odds have Elliott as the favorite.

He has yet to win at Sonoma, but two top-five finishes in five starts will suffice. Elliott has been in contention to win the last three Sonoma races. There’s no reason to believe he won’t be a top contender on Sunday.

Ross Chastain (+900)

Ross Chastain had a tumultuous day at Gateway. First, he hit Denny Hamlin, sending him into the wall. Then, he spun Chase Elliott. Hamlin made Chastain’s life miserable throughout the race and hinted at payback later in the season.

Hopefully, we won’t see that at Sonoma because Chastain has a strong chance to score his third victory of the season. It was only a few months ago that Chastain scored his first career Cup Series victory at COTA.

Check out his performance.

  • Starting Position: 16th
  • Finishing Position: 1st
  • Laps Led: 31 of 69
  • Driver Rating: 141.7

Chastain muscled his way around Tyler Reddick on the final restart. Then, he moved A.J. Allmendinger and Alex Bowman in the final corner to score the victory. Chastain was one of my sleepers at (+2500). Unfortunately, his Toyota/Save Mart 350 odds won’t present as much value.

We saw Chastain in contention in multiple road course races in 2021. He had three top 10 finishes, including a seventh-place finish at Sonoma.

It’s hard to ignore Chastain in my NASCAR predictions. His victory at COTA makes me feel good about his chances at Sonoma. Can he make it 2/2 at road courses in 2022?

Christopher Bell (+1600)

It’s unbelievable how Christopher Bell continues to fly under the radar. A ninth-place finish at Gateway gave him his fifth straight top 10 finish. It’s hard to ignore Bell in my Toyota/Save Mart 350 predictions.

Bell made a name for himself in dirt racing and short tracks. However, he has established himself as a top road course racer. He scored his first career Cup Series victory at the Daytona Road Course.

Check out his last five finishes at road course races.

  • Road America: 2nd
  • Watkins Glen: 7th
  • Indy Road Course: 36th
  • Charlotte Roval: 8th
  • COTA: 3rd

Bell overcame an engine issue at COTA to score a third-place finish. He could’ve challenged Ross Chastain for the win if not for the issue. Bell had a strong chance to win at Watkins Glen but spun after contact with Kyle Larson.

He finished 24th in his lone start at Sonoma, but an early flat tire took him out of contention. My Toyota/Save Mart 350 picks are willing to overlook a rough finish in that race.

It’s amazing that Bell doesn’t have better odds. He is a strong road course racer and has five straight top 10 finishes.

William Byron (+1800)

Christopher Bell presents value for Sonoma, but I can’t believe the best NASCAR sportsbooks have William Byron at (+1800). My NASCAR betting picks are all over Byron at Sonoma.

Byron has seven consecutive finishes outside the top 10, but that’s not indicative of his performance. He has led 24+ laps in three of those seven races. That lines up with his road course performances.

He has led 15+ laps in five road course races, but Byron is searching for his first win. My NASCAR picks value the laps led over his finishing position.

Byron had a strong performance in last year’s race at Sonoma, but a late-race crash led to a 35th-place finish. He wrecked in the final ten laps while running top 10 at Indy Road Course and the Charlotte Roval.

The Charlotte Roval was especially tough for Byron. He had a big lead with 25 laps to go, but a caution erased the gap. He nearly made it back to the lead, but Tyler Reddick forced him off the track.

My NASCAR predictions will always have Byron at (+1800) on a road course. He is a must for the expert Toyota/Save Mart 350 picks.

2022 Toyota/Save Mart 350 Race Props

I nearly went 3-0 on my prop bets for Gateway, but my three picks had issues throughout the race. Let’s see if my Toyota/Save Mart 350 prop bets have more success.

Alex Bowman to Finish Top 10 (EVEN)

Hendrick Motorsports will garner much attention in the free Toyota/Save Mart 350 picks, but people aren’t talking about Alex Bowman. If you take out a crash at Darlington, Bowman has finished top 10 in nine of his last 11 races.

Bowman was by far the best Hendrick Motorsports driver at COTA.

  • Starting Position: 5th
  • Finishing Position: 2nd
  • Driver Rating: 112.3 (4th)

He nearly won before Ross Chastain moved him in the final corner. Bowman has a pair of top 10 finishes at Sonoma in three races with Hendrick Motorsports. He is one of my top picks for the Truck Series race at Sonoma.

Honestly, Bowman isn’t a terrible pick to win at Sonoma. He was a corner away from winning at COTA. A top 10 finish is much safer and still provides value. I’m more than willing to take this prop at (EVEN).

Top Toyota: Martin Truex Jr. (+250)

Chevrolet has been popular in my Toyota/Save Mart 350 predictions. We’ve talked about three Hendrick Motorsports drivers and Ross Chastain. The only active driver with road course numbers close to Chase Elliott is Martin Truex Jr.

Elliott is a better road course racer, but Truex has the upper hand at Sonoma.

  • 15 starts
  • 3 wins
  • 5 top-five finishes
  • 6 top 10 finishes
  • 213 laps led

Truex has two victories and a third-place finish in his last three starts at Sonoma. Elliott and Kyle Larson are the only drivers to beat him at Sonoma in the previous three seasons. You could pick him to win outright, but the value is there for top Toyota finisher.

Christopher Bell and Kyle Busch should challenge Truex for this spot. Busch has been impressive at Sonoma, but I have more confidence in Truex.

Winning Car Number Under 17.5 (+175)

It’s hard to believe I can find this much value for the winning car number being under 17.5. We’re missing a few heavy hitters in Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr., and William Byron. However, this group includes three of the betting favorites.

We’ve already discussed Chase Elliott and Ross Chastain, but what about Kyle Larson? Larson put together a dominant performance in last year’s race at Sonoma.

  • Starting Position: 1st
  • Stage 1 Finish: 1st
  • Stage 2 Finish: 1st
  • Race Finish: 1st
  • Laps Led: 57 of 92

The strategy of road course racing makes it nearly impossible to win both stages and the race. However, there was no stopping Larson. He cruised to his first of three road course wins in 2021.

Denny Hamlin, Ryan Blaney, and Chase Briscoe are capable of winning at Sonoma. Hamlin and Blaney have won on road courses, and Briscoe nearly won at the Indy Road Course.

Who Will Win the 2022 Toyota/Save Mart 350?

My Pick: Christopher Bell (+1600)Bet on NASCAR at Bovada

Honestly, I went back and forth between Chase Elliott and Ross Chastain. Then I thought about Christopher Bell’s value, and it was too good to pass up.

Bell has been one of the best drivers in the last month. We’ve seen him excel at road courses, including this year’s race at COTA. It’s about time Bell scores his first victory of 2022. My Toyota/Save Mart 350 predictions have him in victory lane.

Feel free to watch Sunday’s race at 4 p.m. ET on FS1. Please visit our NASCAR picks page for more NASCAR picks and props.

Nicholas Sterling
Nicholas Sterling

Nicholas has been a Sports Writer with GamblingSites.com since May 2021. He has a rich sports background, writing about NASCAR, NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, Golf, etc. Nick is always ready for a new challenge.

He enjoys rooting on D.C. sports teams, including the Commanders, Wizards, and Capitals.

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