NASCAR: Elliott’s gifted win at Pocono put betting world in a tough spot

Officially Chase Elliott won NASCAR’s M&M’s Fan Appreciation 400 on Sunday.

However, those who bet Elliott to win the race, lost.

Denny Hamlin crossed the finish line first at Pocono, and there was no reason to believe that would change. But hours later, the racing world saw the shocking news that Hamlin and second-place finisher Kyle Busch had been disqualified after a post-race inspection. NASCAR never disqualified an apparent winner since April 17, 1960 as it was always understood in NASCAR that you could cheat to win.

But with the new Next-Gen cars and the stricter rules around them, cheaters can be disqualified as Joe Gibbs Racing found out Sunday. This was a rare occurrence to say the least, even with NASCAR instituting a new disqualification policy in 2019.

That meant Elliott, who never led a lap and finished third, was declared the winner.

The BetMGM house rules accounted for such a circumstance, even though a winner hadn’t been disqualified in more than 60 years. Under the “minimum length of play” section:

“All wagers will be settled according to the unofficial results reported immediately after the conclusion of the race by the governing organization. Any changes to the finishing order that occurs based on appeals, penalties or scoring malfunctions after the race has concluded, will not be recognized.”

In other words, whoever crosses the finish line first is recognized as the winner. In the case of Sunday’s race, that was Hamlin. BetMGM confirmed on Monday morning that Elliott tickets would not be paid out.


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