Daytona 500 odds, picks 2019: Advanced computer model says Clint Bowyer surprises

NASCAR's biggest and most prestigious race, the Daytona 500, is set to kickoff the new season on Sunday, Feb. 17 at 2:30 p.m. ET. Hendricks Motorsports teammates, Alex Bowman and William Byron, will start in the front row for the 61st edition of The Great American Race. The latest 2019 Daytona 500 odds have Brad Keselowski as the Vegas favorite at 8-1, with Kevin Harvick and Joey Logano close behind at 9-1. Meanwhile, Jimmie Johnson, who's going off at 22-1 Daytona 500 odds, will start in the 17th position, three spots ahead of last year's winner Austin Dillon. Johnson is the only active two-time Daytona 500 winner in this year's star-studded field and is coming off a surprising victory as a 25-1 long shot last week at the Advance Auto Parts Clash at Daytona International Speedway. With so many big name drivers to choose from, you'll want to see the 2019 Daytona 500 picks and NASCAR predictions from the team at SportsLine.

Developed by DFS pro and SportsLine predictive data engineer Mike McClure, this proprietary NASCAR prediction computer model takes factors such as track history and recent results into account.

It made some huge calls in NASCAR last year, including correctly projecting wins for Kyle Busch at Chicago and Martin Truex Jr. at Sonoma. It also nailed three of the top four finishers at Michigan, and two of the top four at last year's Daytona 500. Anybody who followed its picks finished way, way up.  

McClure, who has a mechanical engineering degree, grew up around race tracks. Big events like the Daytona 500 are in his blood. And now that the 2019 Daytona 500 lineup is taking shape, his model simulated the event 10,000 times and the results were surprising.

One of the top Daytona 500 picks we'll give away: the model is high on Clint Bowyer, who makes a serious run at the checkered flag despite going off at 12-1 odds. He's a target for anyone looking for a huge payday.

Bowyer finished in second place behind Joey Logano in the second 150-mile qualifying race at Daytona International Speedway on Thursday night. He enters the 2019 season full of confidence after snapping a 190-race winless streak last season when he won at Martinsville in March of 2018. He followed that up with another victory later in the season at Michigan International Speedway.

Bowyer will start in the sixth position at Daytona International Speedway on Sunday, a place where he has had success in recent years. In fact, in 26 career starts at Daytona, he has 12 top-10 finishes and four top fives. With so much success at Daytona International Speedway in his career, you can confidently lock him in at 12-1 odds and look for a chance at a big payout. 

One shocker: Keselowski, the Vegas favorite, makes a strong run but falls short of the checkered flag. Keselowski finished eighth in the NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Standings last season with three wins,  and expectations are high for him heading into 2019. But he's struggled historically at Daytona International Speedway, failing to finish his last four races at this track due to accidents. And though he had a win at this track three years ago, he finished 20th in the Daytona 500 that season.

In 19 career races at Daytona, his average finish position is 17th, so there are far better values to win it all than the 8-1 premium he's commanding. 

The model is also targeting three drivers with 2019 Daytona 500 odds of 14-1 or longer to make a serious run at winning it all. Anyone who backs these long shots could hit it big. 

So who wins the 2019 Daytona 500? And which long shots stun NASCAR? Check out the latest 2019 Daytona 500 odds below and then visit SportsLine to see the full projected Daytona 500 leaderboard from the model that crushed its NASCAR picks last year.

Brad Keselowski 8-1
Kevin Harvick 9-1
Joey Logano 9-1
Aric Almirola 12-1
Clint Bowyer 12-1
Chase Elliott 12-1
Denny Hamlin 12-1
Ryan Blaney 14-1
Kurt Busch 14-1
Kyle Busch 14-1
Martin Truex Jr. 14-1
Daniel Suarez 20-1
Jimmie Johnson 22-1
Erik Jones 22-1
Alex Bowman 25-1

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