2019 NASCAR at Watkins Glen picks, predictions: Fade Chase Elliott, back Clint Bowyer at Go Bowling at The Glen

The race to the NASCAR Playoffs is heating up, with just five races left in the Cup Series regular season. Only seven of the 16 playoff spots are still up for grabs, with automatic berths for each race winner, and the NASCAR playoff field is filling up fast. The last eight races have been won by seven different drivers, including three at 25-1 or higher odds. On Sunday, the series heads to the tricky road course of Watkins Glen International for the 2019 Go Bowling at The Glen, where seven drivers have won the last seven trips to the historic New York track. Several drivers stand out as strong favorites in the latest 2019 Go Bowling at The Glen odds: four-time 2019 Cup winners Kyle Busch (2-1), Martin Truex Jr. (7-2), and Chase Elliott (4-1) lead the group, while Denny Hamlin is listed at 9-1. With so many contenders, you'll want to see the latest NASCAR at Watkins Glen picks and predictions from handicapper Micah Roberts, the legendary Vegas bookmaker who pioneered wagering on racing, before laying any 2019 Go Bowling at The Glen picks of your own.

Those who have wagered $100 on Roberts' picks for each of the 25 NASCAR races in 2019 are already up $1,200. In fact, those who put down $50 on Roberts' top-four leaderboard picks are up $2,000 on the year, buoyed by Alex Bowman's big win at Chicago at 30-1 odds. He hit with Hamlin at 10-1 at Pocono last week.

Roberts got off to a blazing start this year with Jimmie Johnson as a hefty 25-1 long shot at the Advance Auto Parts Clash. The result: Johnson survived a huge crash and went on to win the rain-shortened race as Roberts' followers raked it in. At the TicketGuardian 500, Roberts nailed Busch at 4-1 over the heavily favored Kevin Harvick, and at Dover he hit Truex at 8-1. Truex won the race despite starting at the back of the field.

Roberts' top 20 leaderboard has been on top of it, too. At the TicketGuardian 500, he nailed an eye-popping eight of the top 10. At the Auto Club 400, he got nine of the top 10 correct.

Roberts entered the 2019 NASCAR season after finishing big-time in the black in 2018, with $1,750 in profit for $100 players. His biggest wins came when he went against the grain, taking Brad Keselowski at 12-1 to win the South Point 400 at Las Vegas in the opening race of the NASCAR playoffs and going with Joey Logano, also 12-1, to take the First Data 500 at Martinsville. He also nailed four of Harvick's nine series victories and three of Busch's nine wins. Anyone who's following his picks is up huge year after year.

Now, Roberts has analyzed Sunday's NASCAR at Watkins Glen 2019 lineup. His winning pick and leaderboard are available at SportsLine.

One shocker: We can tell you that Roberts is fading Elliott, one of the top contenders at 4-1 NASCAR at Watkins Glen odds. In fact, Roberts says Elliott barely cracks the top 10 even though he earned the pole during qualifying.

Last year, Elliott was a road-course master, winning the race at Watkins Glen while taking fourth at Sonoma and sixth at the Charlotte Roval. Engine trouble ended his race at Sonoma this year (37th), and he's in a bit of a slump. Overall, after finishing in the top five all but once over a six-race stretch, he hasn't made the top 10 since finishing fourth at Pocono two months ago. He's also failed to lead a lap in his last three starts.

"Elliott needs a boost because he doesn't have a top-10 finish in his last seven starts on the NASCAR schedule, finishing 20th or worse five times over that span," Roberts told SportsLine. "There are better contenders on the board at higher odds."

Another surprise: Roberts is high on Clint Bowyer, a long shot at 25-1 NASCAR at Watkins Glen odds who still has to play his way into the NASCAR Playoffs.

Watkins Glen may be a prime spot for that win. Bowyer has just one victory on a road course -- at Sonoma in 2012 -- but he's been a contender on them the last two-plus years, finishing third, 11th, third, fifth and second in his last five road races.

"He's been in the hunt for a win in almost all the road races since his Sonoma win in 2012," Roberts said. "His 11 top-five finishes on road courses are tied for the most among active drivers. He still needs that win to get into the playoffs. If he's close at the end, he'll go for it."

Roberts is also high on another driver with double-digit odds who has run well at this track and those similar to Watkins Glen. He's heating up at the perfect time, and Roberts says Sunday could be his day. Anyone who backs this driver could hit it big.

So who wins the 2019 Go Bowling at The Glen? And which long shot stuns NASCAR? Visit SportsLine now to see the projected 2019 Go Bowling at The Glen leaderboard, all from the nation's premier NASCAR handicapper, and find out.

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