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Guide to Betting on IndyCar Racing

If you’re a US sports fan with a love of fast cars, you surely follow the IndyCar Series. Some of the most legendary races in the world are part of the schedule, and several talented drivers fight for glory every year.

Watching the action is thrilling enough, but you can also make money betting on IndyCar races. Our guide helps by delivering useful tips and an overview of all important aspects of the series.

We have a list of the best IndyCar betting sites, advice for getting started, advanced strategy for gambling on the races, key stats, and so much more.

Best IndyCar Betting Sites in 2021

Rank VA Betting Site Exclusive Bonus Get Started
#2 50% Up To $1,000 Visit Site Visit Site
#3 100% Up To $1,000 Visit Site Visit Site
#4 50% Up To $250 Visit Site Visit Site
#5 50% Up To $1,000 Visit Site Visit Site

Using the best IndyCar betting apps and online gambling sites is crucial to your chances of success. You need a safe environment, high odds, and rewarding bonuses and promotions.

That’s exactly what our recommended IndyCar sportsbooks online deliver to each customer. Here are further details on some of the best sites for betting on IndyCar racing online.

BetUS – Our Top-Rated IndyCar Betting Site for the USA

BetUS Logo
  • Launched: 1994
  • Welcome Bonus: 100% of up to $2,500
  • US Players: Yes
  • Bitcoin: Yes

You can’t go wrong if you decide to pick BetUS for betting on IndyCar with real money. The bookmaker covers all the races and the odds are consistently better than the industry average.

On top of that, you can enjoy several generous bonuses and promotions that are available to both new and existing BetUS customers.

Another huge advantage of the sportsbook is the fast and reliable payment options at your disposal. If you request a payout with Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency, the money will often reach you on the same day.

MyBookie – Strong IndyCar Series Betting Odds

MyBookie Logo
  • Launched: 2014
  • Welcome Bonus: 50% of up to $1,000
  • US Players: Yes
  • Bitcoin: Yes

MyBookie is one of the best sites for betting on IndyCar races for many reasons. The sportsbook delivers solid odds and various promotions that can boost your returns right from the moment you open a new account.

US players are more than welcome at MyBookie and the website is mobile-responsive. You can enjoy online IndyCar betting action on all popular phones and tablets such as iPhone, iPad, and Android.

It’s one of the top IndyCar betting apps out there and it also provides fast payments on all platforms.

BetNow – Great Variety of IndyCar Betting Markets

BetNow Logo
  • Launched: 2005
  • Welcome Bonus: 100% of up to $1,000
  • US Players: Yes
  • Bitcoin: Yes

If you’re wondering where to bet on IndyCar online, you should definitely consider BetNow.  It’s hard to find any weak areas of this real money sportsbook.

There are generous promotions that can be used for motorsports betting and all IndyCar Series races are available. You can find many interesting props for the bigger races such as the Indy 500.

On top of that, BetNow works with crypto and US players are more than welcome at this sports betting site.

Bovada – One of the Safest IndyCar Betting Sites

Bovada Logo
  • Launched: 2011
  • Welcome Bonus: 50% of up to $250
  • US Players: Yes
  • Bitcoin: Yes

You would struggle to find a more reliable option than Bovada for IndyCar betting with real money on the internet. The bookie has been around for a while and has built an excellent reputation in the online gambling industry.

If you decide to join, you will find plenty of bonuses and promotions that can bring you extra cash. You can use that to bet on IndyCar online and enjoy excellent odds.

You can add the fast payments, the slick IndyCar sportsbook app, and the reliable customer support service to Bovada’s main advantages.

BetOnline – Best IndyCar Sportsbook for Bitcoin

BetOnline Logo
  • Launched: 2004
  • Welcome Bonus: 50% of up to $1,000
  • US Players: Yes
  • Bitcoin: Yes

We know that many of our readers prefer to bet on IndyCar races with cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. If you’re part of that group, BetOnline might be the best sportsbook for you.

Crypto is king there, and you can enjoy various special offers right from the beginning. On top of that, BetOnline offers some of the best IndyCar odds you can find online and fast payments.

All of that is available on the move thanks to the BetOnline mobile betting site that works on iOS, Android, and Windows Phone.

For even more details on our top recommendations and other sites for betting on Indycar online, check out our reviews.

Betting on the IndyCar Series Driver Championship

You now know where to bet on the IndyCar Series online, so it’s time to dissect the different markets and share our top tips on how to make money from betting on IndyCar.

Let’s begin with one of the most popular options – betting on the IndyCar Series Driver Championship. Most sportsbooks for motor racing gambling cover this market and the odds are usually solid even for the favorites.

With that in mind, here are the main factors you need to consider when backing a driver to win the IndyCar Series Championship.

Points Distribution

The driver who collects the most point during the IndyCar Series season is crowned as the champion. The system is such that consistency is the key to success, and it’s important to understand how the points are distributed in each race.

Here’s how the point distribution for each race works, based on the rules of the IndyCar Series.

Position Points
1 50
2 40
3 35
4 32
5 30
6 28
7 26
8 24
9 22
10 20
11 19
12 18
13 17
14 16
15 15
16 14
17 13
18 12
19 11
20 10
21 9
22 8
23 7
24 6
25-33 5
CLICK TO SEE MORE

There are additional points based on other achievements during qualifying or the race itself.

  • Pole Position – 1 point
  • Leading at Least One Lap – 1 point
  • Leading the Most Laps – 2 points

As you can see, there’s plenty of points up for grabs in every single race. You should consider that when betting on the IndyCar Series winner. The season is long, and the driver that can stay near the top in most races usually wins.

Let’s take a look at some recent stats that illustrate this point better.

Average Points Per Race by Previous Winners

Looking at the total points of previous winners when you bet IndyCar online can be misleading because the number of races hasn’t always been the same. It’s usually around 15 but varies a little.

Checking the points earned per race is a much better benchmark. Here’s what the previous few seasons tell us.

Season IndyCar Series Champion Points per Race
2016 Simon Pagenaud 39.94
2017 Josef Newgarden 37.76
2018 Scott Dixon 39.88
2019 Josef Newgarden 37.71
2020 Scott Dixon 38.36

We can see that the average points per race required to lift the IndyCar Series Championship is almost 40!

The simple conclusion when it comes to your IndyCar bets is that you should be looking for a guy that has a strong car and enough experience to perform consistently throughout the season. Finishing outside of the top 10 more than once or twice is usually enough to lose the title.

The Importance of the Indy 500

Another important factor that you should always consider is that the Indy 500 brings double the points. There are even additional points for the qualifiers in the biggest race of the season.

While the presence of many one-off international drivers and the long list of other races somewhat makes up for that, the Indianapolis 500 remains crucial.

It offers the chance to earn a lot of points that can swing the standings. It’s not essential to win the Indy 500 to become a champion, but a decent performance is required.

Here’s what the stats tell us about the last five IndyCar champions and their performance in Indianapolis.

Season IndyCar Series Champion Points at the Indy 500
2016 Simon Pagenaud 50
2017 Josef Newgarden 34
2018 Scott Dixon 71
2019 Josef Newgarden 67
2020 Scott Dixon 91

The only eventual champion that scored fewer than 50 points in the most important race is Josef Newgarden in 2017. A deeper look shows that his main rivals underperformed at the Indy 500 as well.

The second and third drivers in the final standings that year finished outside of the top 10 in Indianapolis, or they would’ve lifted the trophy instead of Newgarden.

In every other season, the IndyCar Series champion collected at least 50 points. That’s a benchmark you should have in mind if you place your futures wagers after the Indy 500 is already finished.

Betting on the IndyCar Manufacturer Championship

Betting on the Manufacturer Championship in the IndyCar Series is another futures option that attracts many bettors.

The battle between the different teams is fierce and arguably the main driving force behind the competition. Right now, Honda and Chevrolet are fighting for the crown every year.

Honda and Chevrolet are the only two manufacturers in IndyCar.

This makes it easier because the options are limited to just two possible bets, but the prices are relatively low as a result.

Here’s how to prepare properly if you want to identify the organization with the highest chance to win and bet on this market.

History Doesn’t Lie

If you look at the history of the series, you will notice plenty of winning streaks. When a certain manufacturer takes a lead, it usually takes a while for the competition to dethrone it.

Oldsmobile had five IndyCar series titles in a row in the 1990s and early 2000s. Then Chevrolet dominated between 2012 and 2017 before Honda took over.

The Japanese manufacturer won three in a row in 2018, 2019, and 2020, dominating Chevy in the process. However, the numbers suggest that a change might be on the horizon.

Season Difference Between Honda and Cheverolet
2018 264
2019 49
2020 33

The gap between the two manufacturers was enormous in 2018, but it has been shrinking. Honda barely edged Chevrolet in 2019 and 2020, with the difference under 50 points on both occasions.

It’s hard to predict for certain going to happen in the near future, but it looks like the fight for the manufacturer’s title will be tight for the years to come.

Points System for Manufacturers

One of the biggest considerations for this IndyCar gambling market is the points system. The manufacturers might be delivering engines for all teams on the grid, but only the top two performers in every race bring points for the championship.

That’s why the distribution is very top-heavy, and you should be looking at the strongest drivers and teams when you try to evaluate the chances of each manufacturer.

Since no driver has managed to completely dominate the series recently, you have to determine how many of them from each engine supplier are realistic contenders in every race.

Naturally, the manufacturer with more drivers fighting for podiums and wins should be the favorite.

Another factor to consider is that only full-season drivers count. Many of the one-off stars that arrive for the Indianapolis 500 won’t affect the manufacturer standings.

Betting on IndyCar Races

Most IndyCar betting online is focused on the races. You don’t have to wait for months for your wagers to be settled, and it’s easier to prepare for a single event.

Let’s take a look at the different markets to understand how to bet on IndyCar races before moving on to our tips.

Betting Markets for IndyCar Races

The best sites for IndyCar betting offer the following options.

  • Race Winner – Back the driver you expect to win the race.
  • Pole Position Winner – You can bet money on your chosen driver to win the qualifiers and start from the pole position.
  • Podium Finish – There are IndyCar betting odds for most drivers to finish on the podium for each race.
  • Fastest Lap – Place a wager on a driver to record the fastest lap during the race.
  • Prop Bets – For the biggest events like the Indy 500, the best sites for betting on IndyCar online add several props like winning margin, head-to-head duels, over/under caution flags, and more.

Some of the markets listed above are only available for some races, but most will be at your disposal for every event on the series calendar.

Here are our IndyCar betting tips that can help you find valuable opportunities to win money.

Analyze the Stats

Evaluating the performance of each team and driver should be your starting point when preparing for your IndyCar race betting. Going through the numbers from previous circuits and seasons can give you an objective idea of what to expect.

There’s a stats section on the official IndyCar Series website that can help you a lot. It features the following information from every race.

  • Winner
  • Total Time
  • Laps Led
  • Pit Stops
  • Average Speed

You can also find information about the training sessions and the qualifiers, advanced stats, and race summaries.

That’s a great way to evaluate the form of each driver by checking the last few races and understanding how strong his car is based on good sample size.

Consider the Circuit Specifics

The IndyCar Series calendar includes oval racetracks, natural road courses, and street tracks in big American cities. As you can imagine, the very nature of each of the three types is completely different.

The oval races are more chaotic and often include tight packs from start to finish.

The IndyCar oval races can be frenzied and there’s plenty of contact.

Certain drivers perform better under such conditions, while others might struggle.

The same applies to road and street courses. These IndyCar Series tracks are more balanced in terms of the challenges they present.

It’s important always to analyze every circuit and figure out which drivers could have the upper hand. Look at their performance on the same track in previous years and their recent results on courses of the same type.

We share more details about some of the tracks later in this IndyCar betting guide.

Follow the Practice and Qualifying Sessions

The race itself is obviously the most attractive part of each IndyCar Series event, but there are also practice sessions and qualifiers.

It’s useful to follow them because they represent the most direct evidence of the current condition of each driver and team. The qualifiers also determine the starting order and provide an advantage for the faster drivers.

There are three different types of qualifiers, depending on the course. Here’s how each of them works.

  • Oval Qualifying Procedures – The cars enter the track by the order determined by a blind draw and have two warmup laps. They can make an attempt that consists of two timed laps after that and their average time counts.
  • Road/Street Course Qualifying Procedures – These are in three stages. The cars have 10 minutes of track time in stage 1, before the top 12 qualify for stage 2. They receive another 10 minutes and the best 6 go to stage 3 to determine the final grid positions.
  • Indianapolis 500 Qualifying Procedures – The biggest race on the calendar has special rules. Each car enters the course by the order of the draw and then has to complete four timed laps for the attempt to count.

If you want more details about the system, check out the full IndyCar Series rules on qualifiers.

The important point is that you should follow the preparations and the qualifiers in order to determine how each driver is performing.

Weather Reports

One of the most obvious factors that you should consider when you bet on IndyCar racing is the weather. If there’s rain, a race could become wild and unpredictable to a point where picking some of the sleepers could be the best IndyCar bets.

That’s why you should always follow the weather reports for a race, and it’s not only about whether it will rain or not. The temperatures are also important and can affect the car setups and performance of the different teams.

The good news is that the forecasts for each race are available online and updated in real-time. A quick google search should help you understand what’s expected to happen during the race.

How Rule Changes Impact IndyCar Betting

The IndyCar Series has been around since the 1990s and has gone through various transformations over the years.

We’ve seen some manufacturers leave the sport only to be replaced by others. We’ve seen all sorts of chassis, tires, and engines that changed the shape of the series.

The same applies to pretty much every part of the cars used in IndyCar and the future likely holds more of the same.

The IndyCar Series cars are always evolving.

The teams and drivers who are good at adapting typically perform better under new sets of rules, so that’s something to consider when betting real money on IndyCar.

To stay ahead of the curve, you should always observe the latest changes between seasons. They are often determined well in advance, and the list is available online.

Here are some examples of major innovations that are planned for 2023.

  • Horsepower – The horsepower will increase from 550-700 to 900.
  • Engine Displacement – The 2.2 L engines will be replaced by 2.4 L engines.
  • Hybrid Tech – Hybrid systems will be introduced to IndyCar for the debut of hybrid engine formula.
  • Next-Gen Chassis – A new generation of chassis will be introduced for the 2023 season.

As you can see, the IndyCar Series will go through major changes, and that has happened plenty of time in the past. The more experienced drivers and engineers who are skilled at adapting to new circumstances always cope better.

Even in seasons where the changes are not that significant, it’s worth following the latest updates. A new part or rule could help you find good online IndyCar betting opportunities.

IndyCar Series Racetracks

If you want to know how to bet on IndyCar racing and make money, you should pay special attention to the different tracks.

Some of them are oval circuits, others are other permanent tracks, and there are even street courses in various US cities.

Even two races on the same type of track can be vastly different, so spending some time getting to know all the specifics pays off when betting on IndyCar with real cash.

Here are some helpful details about the most important IndyCar tracks.

Indianapolis Motor Speedyway – Indy 500
First Race
1911
Laps
200
Total Distance
500 Miles
Track Length
2.5 Miles
Key Features
The Indy 500 is the biggest and most famous race of the series. It’s arguably the most popular oval competition in the world of motorsports and we have a guide to betting on the Indy 500 if you want more info.
Texas Motor Speedway – Genesys 300
First Race
1997
Laps
200
Total Distance
300 Miles
Track Length
1.5 Miles
Key Features
The Genesys 300 has seen some of the most exciting races in the history of the IndyCar Series since 1997.
Long Beach, California – Grand Prix of Long Beach
First Race
1975
Laps
98
Total Distance
192.864 Miles
Track Length
1.968 Miles
Key Features
If you’re looking for the most prestigious street circuit in the IndyCar Series, it has to be Long Beach. Many drivers put the Grand Prix of Long Beach right after the Indianapolis 500 as the race they want to win the most.

Most Successful IndyCar Drivers

Before you get started with IndyCar betting, you’ll want to know as much as you can about the drivers.

Here’s a little look at the recent past, with a list of the most successful drivers since the series adopted its current format in 1997.

Some of them are still active and will likely add to their trophy cabinets soon.

Driver Wins Championships Indy 500 Wins
Scott Dixon 49 6 1
Dario Franchitti 21 4 3
Sam Hornish Jr. 19 3 1
Josef Newgarden 18 2 0
Will Power 37 1 1
Hélio Castroneves 24 0 3
Takuma Sato 6 0 2
Simon Pagenaud 15 1 1

IndyCar Betting vs. Other Motorsports

A lot of people make direct comparisons between IndyCar and other motorsports like Formula 1 and NASCAR. In reality, each of the competitions exists under completely different rules that make them unique.

For example, there’s a strong case that the IndyCar Series is the most competitive. The chassis, engines, and tires available to the different teams are pretty much the same.

The budgets are also limited, so the gap between the different cars is not as big as in Formula 1, where the wealthier organizations are way ahead of the competition.

Many people love the fact that almost any driver has a shot in IndyCar, which makes the series unpredictable. It also opens the door to high odds and attractive betting opportunities.

Another factor that helps IndyCar’s popularity is the push-to-pass system on the wheel. The drivers can use it to boost their horsepower temporarily when they try to overcome the opposition. It’s a powerful tool, as some of the best drivers explain in the following video.

Finally, the variety of the IndyCar Series tracks is what many fans adore. You have the action-packed oval races but also street courses and permanent racetracks with different setups. There’s something for every motorsports fan, and this also affects the betting.

If you can learn all about the different tracks and how drivers perform on them, you can greatly increase your chances of winning money from IndyCar betting.

IndyCar Odds, Predictions, and Picks

The best betting sites for IndyCar cover every race in every season. So do we!

Our team of motorsports betting experts closely follow IndyCar, so you can find a lot of insight and analysis on various aspects of the series on our sports blog.

Our writers also provide regular recommended IndyCar wagers in our motorsport picks section. They provide betting tips for NASCAR and F1, too.

Here are some of their latest picks.