The 2021 Daytona 500 will kick off a new NASCAR season on Sunday, when 40 drivers will try to make history with a win at the 63rd running of The Great American Race. Chase Elliott is only 25 years old, but he's made the NASCAR playoffs in each of his first five seasons, won 11 times in the last three years, and is coming off his first Cup championship. Now, he'll try to add a Daytona 500 crown to an already impressive resume when the green flag drops on NASCAR at Daytona 2021 at 2:30 p.m. ET.

Elliott is 12th in the 2021 Daytona 500 starting lineup and listed at 10-1 in the 2021 Daytona 500 odds from William Hill Sportsbook. Two-time defending Daytona 500 champion Denny Hamlin will have a little more work to do since he's starting in 25th, but his superspeedway prowess means he's the 17-2 favorite in the 2021 NASCAR at Daytona odds. Before you scour the 2021 Daytona 500 starting lineup and make your NASCAR at Daytona predictions for the Great American Race, be sure to see the latest 2021 Daytona 500 picks from SportsLine's proven projection model

Developed by daily Fantasy pro and SportsLine predictive data engineer Mike McClure, this proprietary NASCAR prediction computer model simulates every race 10,000 times, taking into account factors such as track history and recent results.

The model began the 2020 season paying out big by picking Denny Hamlin to win his second consecutive Daytona 500 at 10-1. The model also called Kevin Harvick's win at Atlanta and nailed a whopping nine top-10 finishers in that race. McClure then used the model to lock in a 10-1 bet on Hamlin for his win at Miami. 

At The Brickyard, the model called Harvick's fourth victory of the season. Then during the 2020 NASCAR Playoffs, the model nailed its picks in back-to-back races, calling Denny Hamlin to win at 17-2 at Talladega and Chase Elliott to win at 7-2 at the Charlotte Roval. Anybody who has followed it has seen huge returns.

Now, his model simulated the 2021 NASCAR at Daytona race 10,000 times. Head to SportsLine to see the complete projected leaderboard for the 2021 Daytona 500.

Top 2021 Daytona 500 predictions

One surprise: the model is high on Aric Almirola, even though he's a 16-1 long shot in the latest NASCAR at Daytona odds 2021 from William Hill. He's a target for anyone looking for a huge payday. Almirola's confidence should be soaring after a win in the first 2021 Bluegreen Vacations Duel at Daytona, which resulted in a second-row starting spot with inside position.

The 36-year-old has made the playoffs the last three seasons, while superspeedways have been the site of both of his NASCAR Cup Series victories. Almirola won the 2018 500 at Talladega and the 2014 Coke Zero 400 at Daytona. Stewart-Haas Racing also has Kevin Harvick starting inside the top 10 (eighth), so look for Almirola and Harvick to link up early and climb the 2021 Daytona 500 leaderboard.

And a massive shocker: Chase Elliott, one of the top Vegas favorites at 10-1, stumbles big-time and doesn't even crack the top five. There are far better values in this loaded 2021 Daytona 500 lineup. The 2020 NASCAR Cup Series champion is 12th in the 2021 Daytona 500 starting grid.

Elliott finished second at Daytona last August, but that was his first career top-10 finish in 10 starts at the track. In fact, he'd never finished higher than 14th at this iconic venue, and he's finished 17th or worse in his last three Daytona 500s. His low odds, combined with his lack of success at Daytona, make him one of the drivers to fade at the Daytona 500 2021.

How to make 2021 NASCAR at Daytona picks

The model is also targeting three other drivers with NASCAR at Daytona odds of 13-1 or longer to make a serious run at winning it all. Anyone who backs these drivers could hit it big. You can see all the NASCAR picks over at SportsLine.

So who wins the 2021 Daytona 500? And which long shots stun NASCAR? Check out the latest 2021 Daytona 500 odds below and then visit SportsLine now to see the full projected 2021 Daytona 500 leaderboard, all from the model that nailed Hamlin's win last season

2021 Daytona 500 odds 

Denny Hamlin 17-2
Chase Elliott 10-1
Joey Logano 11-1
Kyle Larson 11-1
Ryan Blaney 11-1
Brad Keselowski 12-1
William Byron 13-1
Kevin Harvick 13-1
Alex Bowman 13-1
Kyle Busch 14-1
Martin Truex Jr. 15-1
Aric Almirola 16-1
Kurt Busch 22-1
Bubba Wallace 22-1
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. 25-1
Christopher Bell 28-1
Austin Dillon 30-1
Ross Chastain 35-1
Matt DiBenedetto 35-1
Ryan Newman 40-1
Tyler Reddick 55-1
Cole Custer 60-1
Austin Cindric 60-1
Jamie McMurray 60-1
Erik Jones 60-1
Chris Buescher 65-1
Chase Briscoe 70-1
Daniel Suarez 100-1
Michael McDowell 100-1
David Ragan 125-1
Corey Lajoie 125-1
Ryan Preece 200-1
Anthony Alfredo 250-1
Kaz Grala 250-1
BJ McLeod 1000-1
Cody Ware 1000-1
Quin Houff 1000-1
Joey Gase 1000-1
Josh Bilicki 1000-1
Derrike Cope 2000-1