The odds are out for Sunday’s Grand Prix of Portland (3 p.m. ET, NBC, INDYCAR Radio Network). As always, it’s good to jump on these early because qualifying in the end all be all for the NTT INDYCAR Series. So who do I like best?
- 10 of the last 11 races at Portland have been won from a top 3 starter.
- 21 of the last 23 races here in Portland were won from a starter in the top 5 at that.
- Scott McLaughlin (+700) – Has accumulated the most points scored in 5 natural road course starts this season and has also qualified 4th in Barber, 11th in Indy, 9th in Road America, 2nd in Mid-Ohio and 15th in Indy 2 on like track. He finished 9th last year at Portland.
- Scott Dixon (+750) – He qualified 3rd here the last 2 times out, so these odds may drop on Saturday….
- Alex Palou (+800) – He won from the pole just last year and has qualified 3rd, 2nd, 3rd, 7th and 7th on like tracks this season. I don’t expect these odds to stay here for long.
- Will Power (+900) – He just tested here, has 2 front row starts in 3 tries and won in 2019. Good odds for a points leader.
- Colton Herta (+1000) – On like tracks, he was 10th, 14th, 5th, 3rd and 9th respectively. In Portland, he’s 2-for-2 in Fast Sixes with being 1st and 6th respectively here.
- Alexander Rossi (+1400) – Has made the Fast 6 in 3 out of the 5 natural road courses this season. However, he also has 2 top 3 starting spots in 3 Portland tries including a worst start of 7th in 2019.
- Felix Rosenqvist (+2000) – This may be your top sleeper. On natural road courses this year, he’s been 6th, 6th, 8th, 4th and 1st respectively. At Portland, Rosenqvist has 2 top 5 starts (5th, 4th) in 2 tries.
- David Malukas (+2500) – He was 18th, 24th, 14th, 8th and 11th on like tracks this season. He’s an INDYCAR rookie here.
- Christian Lundgaard (+3500) – Another rookie but one that qualifies well on like tracks. He was 14th in Barber, 8th in Indy, 13th in Road America, 16th in Mid-Ohio and 6th in Indy 2. This car was in the Fast 12 (9th) here last season.
- Graham Rahal (+4000) – He was 9th at Barber, 12th at the Indy GP, 22nd in Road America, 18th in Mid-Ohio and 17th in Indy 2. He has qualified in the Fast 12 here twice in 3 tries including being 5th last year.
- Conor Daly (+10000) – On like tracks this season, Daly has qualified 22nd (Barber), 4th (Indy RC), 18th (Road America), 22nd (Mid-Ohio) and 10th (Indy return trip). In his 2 Portland tries he’s qualified 9th and 16th respectively.
- Callum Ilott (+15000) – These are his best tracks. Ilott was in Row 6 at Barber (11th) and Road America (12th) as well as 7th at Indy 1, 10th in Mid-Ohio and 19th in Indy 2. He was 19th here last year though.
- Devlin DeFrancesco (+25000) – He has qualified 20th 17th, 21st, 20th and 14th on like tracks this season and coming off of a career weekend in Gateway while testing here a week later…
Fade For Now
- Josef Newgarden (+400) – He’s qualified 7th, 3rd, 2nd, 14th and 5th on like tracks this year. He was on the front row here in 2018 (2nd) but also qualified 13th and 18th respectively since which is why I’d fade the favorite for now. Newgarden is 3-for-3 in top 10’s here including two straight 5th place runs but 0-for-3 in podiums.
- Pato O’Ward (+450) – He was 14th last year and has only scored the 15th most points on natural road courses in 2022.
- Marcus Ericsson (+1200) – He qualified 4th in Road America but was 12th, 18th and 13th in Barber, Indy, Mid-Ohio and 25th Indy 2 respectively during in the year too. Also, he was 10th here last year in his only Portland try. Can probably get better odds after qualifying is done.
- Romain Grosjean (+2000) – He qualified 8th at Barber, 10th at Indy, 7th in Road America,17th in Mid-Ohio and 22nd in Indy again. He was only 21st here last year.
- Rinus VeeKay (+3000) – On like tracks this season was 1st, 15th, 17th, 11th and 8th respectively. He qualified 25th as a rookie here a year ago.
- Simon Pagenaud (+3000) – On like tracks this season, Pagenaud has qualified 24th, 20th, 11th, 6th and 12th respectively. He’s been eliminated in the 1st round in all 3 Portland tries (22nd, 18th, 23rd).
- Takuma Sato (+7000) – He has never made it out of the 1st round in 3 Portland qualifying tries with 2 of the 3 being 20th or worse.
- Helio Castroneves (+8000) – He was 16th, 19th, 16th, 15th and 16th on like tracks this season.
- Kyle Kirkwood (+10000) – He started 21st, 22nd, 24th, 9th and 21st on like tracks this year.
- Jack Harvey (+10000)– On the season, he was 15th in Barber, 9th at Indy, 20th in Road America, 24th at Mid-Ohio and 13th in Indy 2. For Portland, he’s qualified 13th, 4th and 20th respectively.
- Dalton Kellett (+50000) – On the season, he was 23rd, 26th, 23rd, 23rd and 24th respectively on these types of tracks. He started 24th here last year.
- Jimmie Johnson (+50000) – He was 26th in Barber, 27th and 23rd in Indy, 26th at Road America and 27th at Mid-Ohio. He started 22nd in 2021.