The 2021 IndyCar season ended less than a month ago and the next season doesn’t begin for another four months, but that’s not stopping us from making 2022 IndyCar Series betting predictions! Take this article as a way-too-early preview of next season as you begin plotting your betting strategy now.
At the moment, most online sportsbooks haven’t even put up futures betting odds on the sport. However, that WILL change sooner rather than later. When they are available, expect the usual suspects to be favored to win the world championship:
2021 IndyCar Recap
Welcome to the Alex Palou era. In only his second season, the Spaniard captured the IndyCar Series championship. He racked up 549 points throughout the year — coasting ahead of Josef Newgarden (511 points) and Pato O’Ward (487) to claim the title. Only 24 years old, some believe Palou will dominate the racing landscape for years to come.
The improvements from year one to year two were massive for Palou. In his rookie campaign of 2020, he raced under Dale Coyne. In 14 races, he placed on the podium just once. Compare that to 2021, when Palou joined Chip Ganassi Racing, and won three races with seven podium finishes. Yeah, that was a huge jump, which makes one wonder if Palou can do even better in year three.
In a way, Palou has become the new face of Chip Ganassi. That title was previously reserved for Scott Dixon, one of the most accomplished open-wheel drivers in history. Dixon has won six titles — one shy of tying the all-time mark set by A.J. Foyt. Now 41 years old, one has to wonder whether Dixon will ever reach that record with Palou now in the mix.
Beyond the usual domination from Chip Ganassi, the 2021 IndyCar season was one of the most competitive in recent memory. Between 16 different races, nine different drivers captured first-place finishes — which is a steep contrast to other motorsports like Formula 1 or NASCAR that are dominated by the same names over and over again.
Like other sports leagues, the pandemic threw a wrench in IndyCar’s scheduled plans. 2021 was marked by reschedules and even an outright cancellation (the Honda Indy Toronto for a second straight season). If there’s a glimmer of hope for 2022, it’s that things somewhat “return to normal” across the racing calendar.
2022 IndyCar Championship Betting Pick
As we said earlier, IndyCar was overly competitive a season ago. If that remains the case in 2022, which is likely the case, you don’t want to “hitch your wagon to only one horse.” Or in other words, make a futures bet on only one driver to win the championship. No, no, you want to limit your risk and bet with several different drivers. Personally, we believe these next to are must-bets next season:
What a surprise, eh? Not to repeat ourselves, but we really believe Palou is the “real deal” and isn’t even close to reaching his full potential, which is a scary thought given his 2021 performance. Even the slightest of improvements would separate Palou further from the pack.
Of course, going back-to-back in IndyCar is hard. Really hard, in fact, as it hasn’t happened since Dario Franchitti pulled off a three-peat between 2009 and 2011. But ironically, both Palou and Franchitti shared the No. 10 car for Chip Ganassi, so perhaps a case of deja vu? We believe it’s worth a preseason bet, that’s for sure!
Akin to Palou, the 21-year-old Herta is part of the “next generation” of IndyCar. He has racing in his blood as the son of Bryan Herta and has flashed plenty in his three full seasons in the sport. Here’s where Hera has placed each season: 7th, 3rd, and 5th last season.
2021 was a particularly interesting campaign for Herta. On one hand, he was tied with Palou with the most wins in the year with three. But on the other hand, Herta let two to three sure-fire victories get away from him due to mistakes and bad luck. The big thing for Herta to improve in 2022 is to be more consistent. At his best, he’s tough to compete with. But at his worst, he’s a very mid-tier driver. Regardless, we’re betting on him due to his immense upside.
How To Bet On IndyCar Series In 2022
The first race of IndyCar’s 2022 season will be the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on February 27. That gives you about four months to formulate your IndyCar betting strategy for the 2022 season. Once you have that, you’ll need a trusty sportsbook to make your IndyCar bets at. The list of sportsbooks below is just that. Any one of them will carry IndyCar odds (from moneyline winner to other bets like futures and props) once the season is near or in-session.
Though, there’s one more reason you should consider these betting sites — the big-money promotional bonuses. These deals could score you hundreds to thousands of dollars in free play, all before you even make a sports bet. The table we’ve featured underneath has a running list of sign-up bonuses currently available, which are the most lucrative of all promotions.