|Scott Dixon celebrates his 5th win at Mid-Ohio in 2014 |
We’re going to have a little fun here.
As we did for the Indianapolis 500, let’s take a look at the odds to win for this weekend’s Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio.
Now, before we get started what follows are my thoughts relative to the odds provided by My Bookie. For example, Scott Dixon has won at Mid-Ohio five times and will almost certainly be in the mix this weekend. But is Dixon a good bet at 3/1? Or would you rather have Will Power at 6/1? What about about 2017 winner Josef Newgarden at 4/1?
We'll answer those questions and more.
For clarity purposes, I’m writing this article on Saturday morning before qualifying. I will update after qualifying tomorrow. Here goes.
|Brian likes Josef Newgarden to repeat at 4/1|
Dixon is obviously great at Mid-Ohio, so if you wanted to go there, I wouldn’t blame you. I just think 3/1 is a tough price to pay.
Wickens could be due and the 8/1 number is a fair price. But if I had to choose one from this group give me Newgarden at 4/1. He was dominant here last year, and won both Barber and Elkhart Lake this season with ease. Plus, at a track where qualifying is so important Newgarden’s current qualifying form gives him an edge over the others in this group.
The Second Tier
Hinchcliffe at 20/1 isn't crazy, but not enough to entice me. Despite Bourdais leading opening practice, the team’s recent struggles make him cost-prohibitive for me at 10/1.
Rahal, the 2015 winner at Mid-Ohio, would perhaps get my attention at 25 or 30 to 1, but not at 15/1. The clear pick here, in my opinion is Hunter-Reay at 10/1.
|Ryan Hunter-Reay en route to a 4th place finish in 2009 |
RHR has never won at Mid-Ohio, but he has shown speed here over the years. You might remember, he earned his first career podium way back in the Champ Car days coming home third for American Spirit Team Johansson in 2003. He also scored an impressive 4th
driving for A.J. Foyt in 2009 and won pole in 2010. Plus, RHR finished 2nd
at both Barber and Road America this season, so he and the Andretti Autosport team have shown strength on the permanent road courses. RHR at 10/1 is a very favorable number.
The Middle Class:
|Takuma Sato ran a strong fifth last season |
The clear standout in this category for me is Sato at 40/1
. While the 2017 Indianapolis 500 winner’s record here (2 top-5s in 8 starts) is nothing that will blow your skirt up, he has shown speed in previous races, most notably last year when he started third and finished 5th
. Also, Sato has shown signs of rounding into form lately with a 4th
at Road America, 3rd
at Iowa, and a strong run at Toronto before getting caught up in a lap 66 accident. Plus, we all know Sato is as fast as anyone on his day. At 40/1, I’m more than happy to throw a dart on Sato’s speed and recent form.
The Real Longshots:
Sato at 40/1 is probably as far down in the field as I would be willing to go this weekend. But if you want a value longshot, Spencer Pigot’s form in recent races and practice this weekend means he’s been grossly mispriced being the same number as drivers like Binder and Max Chilton.
|Spencer Pigot earned his first career podium three weeks ago at Iowa |
And if you’re going to play Pigot, I would make sure you get him before qualifying starts. He’s been quick this weekend and if he qualifies in the top-10 (a reasonable outcome given his practice speed), that 100/1 could easily drop to 40/1. Also, if Pigot were to say qualify in the top-5, a 100/1 ticket would give you some leverage and the ability to hedge with some other drivers near the front.
I'll update this thread following qualifying this afternoon.