The Action Network: Best bet for Phoenix Cup race

Find out why PJ Walsh is leaning heavily on Saturday’s practice to pinpoint his best NASCAR bet for the Ruoff Mortgage 500.

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The NASCAR Cup Series season rolls on with Sunday’s Ruoff Mortgage 500 at Phoenix Raceway (3:30 p.m. ET, FOX, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

Following pack racing at Daytona, high-tire wear at the 2-mile Auto Club Speedway and a trip to the 1.5-mile Las Vegas Motor Speedway, today’s race will be the first for the Next Gen car on a 1-mile flat track like Phoenix.

Because the Next Gen car is still very new, I’m leaning heavily on Saturday’s practice to pinpoint my favorite NASCAR bet for the Ruoff Mortgage 500.

NASCAR Pick & Prediction for Phoenix

*Odds as of Sunday morning

Tyler Reddick (+300) to Win Group C

This number is simply an overreaction to qualifying results for the race. Christopher Bell is the favorite in this group at +185, which I have no problem with, but Alex Bowman at +225 and especially Brad Keselowski at +300 are a bit head-scratching to me.

Among these drivers, Tyler Reddick had the best 10- and 15-lap averages in practice and it wasn’t close. Reddick ranked sixth and fourth in those, respectively, compared to 20th and 14th for Bell and 18th and 13th for Keselowski.

Bowman never made a run of at least 10 laps, but he was just 17th fastest in five-lap average, while Reddick ranked fourth.

When it comes to practice speed, Reddick was by far the fastest driver of the group, yet he’s priced with Keselowski, who was clearly slower in race trim and will start six spots behind the No. 8 Chevy car.

Again, I don’t have a problem with Bell being the favorite of the group, but Reddick should be much closer to Bell’s +185 than Keselowski’s +300 odds.

I have a feeling this price will shorten between now and this afternoon’s green flag, so go ahead and lock in the +300 available at DraftKings Sportsbook.