2023 Nascar All-Star Race Preview

It’s the midway point of the regular season and time for All-Star weekend. Adding to the excitement of potentially winning $1 Million is the fact we’re at the historic short track North Wilkesboro Speedway. It’ll be the first Nascar race here since September of 1996 which saw Jeff Gordon take the checkered flag. We’re in for a very exciting weekend of racing and to get you prepped, wanted to quickly break it all down. Here is your Nascar All-Star Race Preview.

All-Star Race Preview: Date, Time, & Format

All-Star weekend begins this Friday, May 19th with Qualifying at 5:30 PM EST. Unlike traditional hot-lapping though, the lineups for the Open and Main All-Star Race begin with the much anticipated return of the Pit Crew Challenge.

Teams will race against the clock performing a regular 4-tire pit stop, and the faster the stop, the better a driver’s starting positon will be. This event will determine the starting grid for the All-Star Open. And the two heat races on Saturday evening that set the first 21 spots of the main event on Sunday.    

The Nascar All-Star Race from North Wilkesboro Speedway is this Sunday, May 21st. With things going green at 5:30 PM EST for the All-Star Open followed by the main event at 8:00 PM EST. 

This is a non-points earning race and has no impact on the regular season or playoffs. Drivers are instead racing each other for the $1 Million prize that goes to the winner.

All-Star Race Field

In addition to being an exhibition, the field is also reduced from the normal 36 to just 24 participating cars. 21 of these participants are auto-qualifiers which met one of the following two criteria:

  • Won a race during the 2022 or 2023 season
  • Won a past All-Star race or Cup Series Championship and a current full-time driver.

The 21 drivers already locked into the main event with race odds from DraftKings Sportsbook can been below.

*Odds current at time of publication

All-Star Race auto-qualifiersOdds
Kyle Larson+650
Kevin Harvick+750
Joey Logano+900
Christopher Bell+900
William Byron+1000
Martin Truex Jr.+1000
Denny Hamlin+1100
Ross Chastain+1200
Chase Elliott+1400
Kyle Busch+1600
Ryan Blaney+1800
Tyler Reddick+2500
Brad Keselowski+2500
Chase Briscoe+2800
Bubba Wallace+2800
Daniel Suarez+3500
Chris Buescher+4500
Austin Dillon+6500
Ricky Stenhouse Jr.+6500
Erik Jones+6500
Austin Cindric+6500

The remaining 3 spots will be determined by the All-Star Open and the currently running Fan Vote which can be accessed HERE.

All-Star Open Field

The Open race is a 100-lap sprint where each car has just one set of new tires available to them on pit road. The top 2 finishers will advance to the Main Event later that evening. See all the Open participants and their odds below.

*Odds current at time of publication 

All-Star Open DriversOdds
Ty Gibbs+400
Ryan Preece+400
Josh Berry+400
Aric Almirola+450
A.J. Allmendinger+1400
Michael McDowell+1600
Todd Gilliland+1800
Noah Gragson+1800
Justin Haley+1800
Harrison Burton+1800
Chandler Smith+1800
Corey Lajoie+2800
Ryan Newman+8000
Ty Dillon+15000
J.J. Yeley+30000
Josh Bilicki+30000
Nascar All-Star Race Preview

What to Expect

Honestly, I have no freaking idea how to handicap this race. This the first time Nascar is visiting North Wilksboro since 1996. And only two active Cup drivers were even old enough to have learners permits, let alone drive a car at that time.

It is a short track at under ¾ of a mile with a very old concrete racing surface that should destroy tires very quickly. In regards to comparisons, my friend at ifantasyrace.com has Richmond as the closest such track.

If we’re going based on that, while also factoring in other short tracks, Kyle Larson, Joey Logano, and Martin Truex Jr. should all be serious contenders. That said, with $1 million on the line, you can expect some aggressive, Ross Chastain style driving from a lot of the field.

I probably won’t be betting the Nascar All-Star Race outside of a couple small unit darts because of all the uncertainty. I can assure you I’ll be watching and am thouroughly excited for all the festivities. Good luck to anyone placing wagers, and make sure to get some sleep. We’re headed to Charlotte for the longest race of the season, the Coca-Cola 600 next weekend.

Featured Image Credit: James Gilbert/Getty Images

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written by

Brian is just a regular guy whose first passion was sports. He's either been playing, watching, now working in, and recreationally betting on sports for over 30 years. His favorite sports to bet are Football (NFL/NCAAF), College Basketball, and the NASCAR Cup Series. In addition to being a content contributor here at Bleacher Nation, Brian co-hosts the Angle of Pursuit Nascar Betting Podcast , & is also the FantasyLifeApp breaking news moderator/manager.

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