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Colton Herta is PointsBet favorite for the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg

Nate Ryan previews the beginning of the IndyCar season where fans will be treated to festive venues and fresh faces in new places.

Colton Herta picked up in 2022 where he ended 2021 as the PointsBet favorite for the Grand Prix of St Petersburg for the February 27 race on the 1.8-mile street course (12:30 p.m. ET, NBC).

Herta was a slight favorite for the last year’s season-ending Grand Prix of Long Beach with a line of +425 to Alex Palou’s +440. This time around, Herta’s line is smaller at +340 and the gap to the second-favored driver Romain Grosjean (+525) is wider.

Herta won the 2021 Grand Prix of St. Petersburg by nearly 2.5 seconds over Josef Newgarden.

One way to view American Odds is to move the decimal point two positions to the left. That will let a bettor know what they will make on a $1 bet, so the return on investment this week for Herta is $3.40. For bettors more comfortable with fractional odds, a bet of +300 is the same as 3/1.

For 2022, PointsBet has partnered with NBC Sports to create a free-to-play contest on the Sport Predictor mobile app, giving gamers two ways to play.

After topping practice on Friday, Grosjean is the second-ranked PointsBet St. Petersburg driver this week. Grosjean finished 13th in this race last year while driving for Dale Coyne.

The only other driver under 10/1 at St. Petersburg is Will Power. His line of +675 comes on the heels of an eight-place finish on this track last year. Power is a two-time St. Petersburg winner from 2010 and 2014.

Rounding out the top five, Newgarden and Palou are both listed at +1200.

Newgarden is also a two-time winner of this race, but his victories are much more recent coming in 2019 and 2020.

Palou was the first driver to finish a lap down to the leaders in 2021 with a 17th-place finish.

One PointsBet St. Petersburg longshot of note is Scott McLaughlin, who topped the second practice session Saturday morning. He can be wagered at +5000 for the outright win. McLaughlin is the only driver in both sessions to crack the one-minute barrier with a lap time of 59.734.

Jimmie Johnson, who will be running the full season this year, is listed at +50000. Johnson was posted 25th on Saturday’s practice chart in the 26-car field.

MORE: NBC Sports Predictor, St. Petersburg

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