Wins Chicago NASCAR Playoffs opener for second consecutive year
Martin Truex Jr. opened the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs on the right foot, rallying from early adversity to land a victory in Sunday’s NASCAR Playoffs opener at Chicagoland Speedway. Chase Elliott led 42 laps and finished second in the Hendrick Motorsports No. 24 Chevrolet as Playoff-eligible drivers swept the top six spots. Kevin Harvick, Denny Hamlin and Kyle Larson completed the top five in the first of 10 races that will decide the series champion.
Fresh from a Twitter war with Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch proved a point with his pole run at Chicagoland Speedway--and may just have proved Keselowski’s. “We are all in for a rude awakening,” Keselowski tweeted two hours before Friday’s knockout qualifying session at the 1.5-mile track, site of Sunday’s Tales of the Turtles 400. The tweet was a reference to Toyota’s recent dominance in NASCAR’s foremost series, and after a snarky social media exchange with Keselowski, Busch let his No. 18 Camry do the talking, leading all three rounds of qualifying and capping the session with a blistering 28.792-second circuit at 187.963 mph in the money round. Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Denny Hamlin (186.168 mph) was second in the final round, 0.277 seconds off Busch’s pace.
by Pete McCole Kyle Larson snuck out of Richmond Raceway with a surprise victory in Saturday night's Federated Auto Parts 400 in the final race of the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series regular season. Larson led the final three laps of a green-white-checkered overtime finish to secure his fourth win of the year, tying Martin Truex, Jr. - who saw his chances for his fifth victory go up in smoke after he and Denny Hamlin crashed on the final lap.
by Brandon Reed Brad Keselowski chased down Kyle Busch in the final laps of Friday night's Virginia529 College Savings 250 at Richmond Raceway to score his second NASCAR Xfinity Series victory of the season. Keselowski took advantage of Busch's fading tires to track down the race leader and make the final pass for the lead with 15 laps to go. Busch, Ty Dillon, Daniel Hemric and Elliott Sadler rounded out the top five.
Federated Auto Parts 400 In need of a playoff spot next week and a place to drive next year, Matt Kenseth stormed to the pole position for Saturday night's Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond Raceway. Kenseth covered the .75-mile distance in 22.055 seconds (122.421 mph) in the final round of Friday's knockout qualifying session to edge Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Denny Hamlin (122.277 mph) for the top starting spot by .026 seconds.
Torrence, Todd, Skillman, Krawiec Win at Indianapolis
Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals Steve Torrence piloted his Capco Contractors dragster to the Top Fuel victory Monday at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, the world's biggest drag race, at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis. J.R. Todd (Funny Car), Drew Skillman (Pro Stock) and Eddie Krawiec (Pro Stock Motorcycle) were also victorious at the 18th event of 24 on the 2017 NHRA Mello Yello Series Drag Racing Series schedule.
Denny Hamlin Rallies To Score Second Southern 500 Win
by Pete McCole After nearly giving the race away with a pit road miscue on the final round of pit stops, Denny Hamlin rallied to erase a 20-second deficit over race leader Martin Truex, Jr. and inherited the lead when Truex cut a tire and hit the wall with two laps to go, completing a remarkable comeback to win Saturday night's Bojangles Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway for the second time in his career.
by Pete McCole On a throwback weekend at Darlington Raceway, Denny Hamlin reached into the playbook of the late Dale Earnhardt, Sr. and pulled out a throwback cross-over move on Joey Logano on the final lap of Saturday's Sports Clips Haircuts VFW 200 to score his fifth Darlington Xfinity Series victory.
by Pete McCole Kevin Harvick scored his second Darlington pole in Saturday's qualifying for Sunday's Bojangles Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. Driving throwback paint scheme on his no. 4 Busch Beer Chevrolet honoring five-time Southern 500 winner Cale Yarborough, Harvick swept all three rounds of qualifying to secure his fourth pole of the season and 21st of his career. Martin Truex, Jr. took second, followed by Kyle Busch, Kyle Larson and Jamie McMurray.
First-Career NASCAR Xfinity Series Win Journeyman Jeremy Clements and his small team topped big-name race organizations to clinch a first-ever victory in 256 NASCAR XFINITY Series starts. Clements spun on the second-to-last lap after contact with race leader Matt Tifft, but got his car back on track and seized the lead for the final lap and cruised to the checkered flag
by Pete McCole Kyle Busch scored his second-career Bristol three-race sweep with a victory in Saturday night's Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway, taking his former protégé and future teammate Erik Jones to school in the final laps for his 40th-career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race win.
by Pete McCole Kyle Busch beat up on the NASCAR Xfinity Series drivers yet again with a domineering performance in Friday night's Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway for second Bristol win of the week. Busch led a race-high 186 laps including the final 81, and held off his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Daniel Suarez on a final restart with nine laps to go to take the checkered flag for the fifth time this season.
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