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8-2-04

Here we are into August and it�s time to take a serious look at the run for the championship at Old Dominion Speedway.  I�ll do a little handicapping and give you some odds; good luck finding a bookie who will let you place a bet.           

A few weeks ago it looked like Danny Fair would take an easy cruise to the track championship, now the picture is not as clear.  Fair still has a comfortable lead in the late model standings but the sense of being �unbeatable� has worn off a bit.  I don�t think Danny has gone backwards as much as his nearest rivals have leapt forward. 

Andreas Kestermann is now a favorite to win on any given Saturday night.  His car is well prepared and Andreas� temperament is well suited for the rough and tumble world of short track racing.  Kestermann has also seemed to genuinely enjoy his transition from �solid racer� to �solid winner�.  His four feature wins are second only to Danny Fair but, at 98 points out of the lead, Andreas will need to win at least five more and hope for some bad luck from his competitors if he is to secure his first late model crown.

 ODDS 10-1

Jack Bailey is a talented race car driver with excellent equipment.  He�s picked up 3 Dash wins and a feature win this season and the consistent finishes are starting to come.  Jack needs to get into a groove starting this week if he�s going to have any chance of tracking down the leader.  Jack has to be sure he�s in the Dash each week (no driver has won a feature this year starting from outside the top six) and then race for the win.  Like Kestermann, he�ll need some luck to take the title; 70 points is a lot of ground to make up.

 ODDS 8-1

Brandon Butler came to Old Dominion Speedway this year with a clearly defined goal; win the track title and make a run at the regional and national crowns as well.  So far this season Butler has fallen short, but his performance right now seems the strongest to date.  Butler has one feature win this season and is Fair�s closest pursuer in the points race.  Butler must win at least four more races this year to have a chance.  The gap stands at 34 points.  Let�s put that into perspective.  If 18 cars started a race and Danny had, let�s say a tire problem that he had to change under green and lost two laps and finished 14th and Brandon won the race; that 34 points would be cut to just 8.  In other words, Brandon could overcome a 34 point deficit in these final races.

 ODDS 4-1

I said Brandon �could� overcome a 34 point deficit but it won�t be easy.  A bad night for Danny is finishing third, Danny could finish the rest of the races in third and still win no matter what the competition did.  With that said, it only takes one bad night to throw the whole thing into a tail-spin.  Danny is driving a great car and he�s been around enough to know how to stay cool.  If Danny relaxes and doesn�t start to feel the pressure he will win.

 ODDS 5-4

 


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