NASCAR Playoffs at Charlotte results: Martin Truex wins, advances to Round of 8
The No. 78 driver nabs his sixth victory of the season
Martin Truex Jr outlasted a barrage of cautions on Sunday at Charlotte Motor Speedway to win his sixth race of the season and advance to the NASCAR Playoffs Round of 8. Truex started 17th and didn't place inside the top 10 in Stage 1.
The No. 78 picks up another five points to bring his playoff total to 64. Those points will carry over into the next round but not the Championship 4 if Truex does indeed make it to Homestead in November. It is the second straight playoff opener victory for Truex.
Truex attributed his win to his longtime girlfriend, Sherry Pollex, who has been battling ovarian cancer since 2014 and is currently undergoing chemotherapy.
Although Pollex, a typical mainstay in Truex's pit box, was not at the race, she was watching from home and sent out a tweet to congratulate her boyfriend.
Chase Elliott was runner-up for a second straight race. It was a much-needed performance for the No. 24, who despite a solid playoffs thus far, began the Round of 12 from the 10th position. He now moves up to fourth.
Kyle Busch had a rough day, finishing 27th after bringing out the caution multiple times. Given the fumes he had been breathing in all day, the No. 18 driver collapsed on pit road after the race. He was able to get up and walk around under his own power after receiving ice packs and wet towels.
Here's how it all went down.
Prior to the race, Dale Jarrett paid tribute to the late Robert Yates,. Jarrett manned the iconic Robert Yates Racing No. 88 car for the pace lap. Yates, a Hall of Fame owner and engine builder, was 74 years old.
Stage 1: Kyle Larson a big mover as Kevin Harvick wins
won Stage 1 over last week's runner-up Chase Elliott, followed by Jamie McMurray, Kyle Larson, , , Matt Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Daniel Suarez and to round out the top 10. Kurt Busch and Suarez were the only two non-Round of 12 drivers to earn stage points.
Hamlin battled with Harvick while leading the first 35 laps ahead of the competition yellow. The caution was designed to compensate for canceled practice and allow teams to make adjustments after running part of the race. Larson seemed to emerge as the leader, but he missed his pit stall and had to come around again, dropping him to 31st.
Elliott took the lead from Hamlin upon the restart as Harvick made the pass as for second as well. Ryan Newman's car then spun out and went up in flames a few laps later. Clint Bowyer and Joey Logano also sustained damage.
The caution proved to be costly for Elliott, who forfeited the lead to Harvick with 38 laps to go in the stage. While Harvick's dominance was shown, it was Larson who made the biggest move, finishing the stage fourth ahead of teammate McMurray.
Stage 2: Kevin Harvick sweeps, Elliott runner-up again
Harvick dominated Stage 2, completing the mid-race sweep at Charlotte. He only had three stage wins coming into the race.Kenseth was third followed by Martin Truex Jr., Kurt Busch, Hamlin, Larson, Jimmie Johnson, Ryan Blaney and McMurray to round out the top 10.
Kyle Busch took the lead from McMurray on the opening lap of Stage 2 after the No. 1 won the race off pit road. Michael McDowell brought out the first caution of the stage on lap 114 granting Logano, one of the victims of the first caution, the free pass. Harvick reclaimed the lead from Busch on the restart.
Busch went on to hit the wall hard with 44 to go in the stage while running in the second position, bringing out the caution. He had similar problems in the only practice earlier in the week. The No. 18 team worked for three minutes, however Busch was able to make it back onto the track just a lap down. Harvick continued on to lap Busch again with 18 to go in the stage after Rowdy rubbed the wall yet again.
Rowdy finished the stage two laps down in 31st, 10 spots behind Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Final Stage: Truex does it again
Harvick continued his dominance in an uneventful early part of the stage as Kyle Busch hit the wall yet again. This time the caution did not come out, but Busch was forced to bring the No. 18 into the pits. Kenseth followed him shortly after for adjustments, signaling the start of green flag pit stops.
Truex beat Harvick off of pit road and took the lead once Kasey Kahne finally came in. Larson then moved up to second after Harvick complained of grip issues.
David Ragan wrecked who is raising awareness for breast cancer with a pink car, had to take it to the garage. Ragan also saw his day come to the end.'s No. 10 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Fusion with roughly 70 laps to go in the race. Patrick,
The caution occurred right around the fuel window meaning drivers were immediately told to conserve for the final stretch run if no more yellows were to come out. Fortunately for most of the drivers, a caution did come out however it was at the expense of Kyle Busch, who spun out with 55 to go. It was insult to injury for the No. 18 whose fault gave new life to his competitors trying to knock him out of the playoffs.
Larson had a miserable pit stop in which his rear tire changer fell over, moving him outside of the top 10. It had appeared Johnson was facing a penalty for adjusting lug nuts while outside his pit box, but he was not accessed. However, the slow stop pushed the No. 48 outside of the top 15 as Truex held the lead on the restart.
Busch again brought out the caution with 10 laps to go as it seemed Truex was going to easily drive on to another victory. It didn't appear as though the No. 18 hit anything rather smoke, debris and a slow car brought out the yellow flag. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was penalized for speeding as Kevin Harvick lost four spots after being within just seconds of the lead.
Brother Kurt Busch followed suit after Truex got out to a tremendous lead on the restart, spinning out and bringing out a caution of his own. Larson's car suffered slight damage but he was still able to restart inside the top six for overtime.
Truex took another commanding lead upon the restart, holding off Chase Elliott and the rest of the field en route to the checkered flag.
Bank of America 500 results
- Martin Truex Jr.
- Chase Elliott
- Kevin Harvick
- Denny Hamlin
- Jamie McMurray
- Daniel Suarez
- Jimmie Johnson
- Ryan Blaney
- Kasey Kahne
- Kyle Larson
- Matt Kenseth
- Dale Earnhardt Jr.
- Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
- Trevor Bayne
- Brad Keselowski
- Austin Dillon
- Erik Jones
- Chris Buescher
- Paul Menard
- AJ Allmendinger
- Ty Dillon
- Kurt Busch
- Matt DiBenedetto
- Aric Almirola
- Landon Cassill
- Joey Logano
- Clint Bowyer
- Corey LaJoie
- Kyle Busch
- Jeffrey Earnhardt
- Reed Sorenson
- BJ McLeod
- Timmy Hill
- Cole Whitt
- Michael McDowell
- Gray Gaulding
- David Ragan
- Danica Patrick
- Brett Moffitt
- Ryan Newman
BOLD - indicates Round of 12 playoff driver
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs Round of 12 standings
Martin Truex Jr.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
Jody Demling has nailed nine Derby-Oaks doubles
Jody Demling has hit nine of the last 11 Derby-Oaks doubles at Churchill Downs
The man could be facing assault charges, while other parents could face child abuse charge...
Jody Demling hit the superfecta in January's Pegasus World Cup
Richard Eng just nailed the 1-2 finish in the Belmont Stakes
Horse racing insider Richard Eng has revealed his picks for the 2019 Fleur de Lis Handicap