Harvick bumps Kyle Busch out of way to win New Hampshire

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Harvick bumps Kyle Busch out of way to win New Hampshire
Jim Utter
By: Jim Utter
Jul 22, 2018, 11:26 PM

Kevin Harvick wins again, this time with a bump-and-run.

Kevin Harvick, Stewart-Haas Racing, Ford Fusion Busch Beer
Kevin Harvick, Stewart-Haas Racing, Ford Fusion Busch Light and crew member
Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry Interstate Batteries
Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry Interstate Batteries
Aric Almirola, Stewart-Haas Racing, Ford Fusion Smithfield
Martin Truex Jr., Furniture Row Racing, Toyota Camry 5-hour ENERGY/Bass Pro Shops
Martin Truex Jr., Furniture Row Racing, Toyota Camry 5-hour ENERGY/Bass Pro Shops

With seven of 301 laps remaining, Harvick caught leader Kyle Busch, gave him a nudge from behind and held on for the win in Sunday’s rain-delayed Foxwoods 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

 

The win is Harvick’s sixth of the season, the most of any driver, and 43rd of his career.

"I didn't know if I was going to get there (at his rear bumper) again and felt like that was my best opportunity to do what I had to do to win," Harvick said. "I didn't want to wreck him but I didn't want to waste a bunch of time behind him.

"Winning is important and you need to take every opportunity you can."

Asked if he worried about the future consequences from that move, Harvick said, "Well, you do, and you worry about that stuff later. It's not like I wrecked him. It was the same thing in Chicago.

"I want to thank all the fans for sticking it out in the rain today. What a great race today. Appreciate it. Awesome day!"

Busch ended up second, Aric Almirola was third, Martin Truex Jr. was fourth and Chase Elliott completed the top-five.

Rounding out the Top 10 were Ryan Newman, Ryan Blaney, Kurt Busch, Joey Logano, and Jimmie Johnson.

Following break between Stages 2 and 3, all of the lead-lap cars elected to pit and Kurt Busch came off pit road first and took over the lead when the race returned to green on Lap 159. He was followed by Elliott and Truex.

On Lap 163, Almirola made his way up into the second position as Elliott dropped back to third.

Kyle Busch moved back into fourth on Lap 178 as Kurt Busch continued to hold about a second lead over Almirola.

Harvick made his way into the fourth position on Lap 195 as Kyle Busch dropped back into fifth.

With 100 laps remaining in the race, Harvick was challenging Elliott for the third position and on Lap 205, Harvick finally was able to complete the pass.

With the help of some lapped traffic, Almirola moved to the inside of Kurt Busch on Lap 212 and took the lead for the first time in the race.

On Lap 215, Brad Keselowski had started to drop back through the field and was complaining of issues with his brakes.

The first cars to kick off a round of green-flag pit stops headed to pit road on Lap 223. Once the cycle was completed on Lap 229, Harvick had moved into the lead, followed by Almirola, Kyle Busch and Elliott.

During the stops, Clint Bowyer was penalized for pitting outside his pit box. He was running sixth before he began his stop.

Almirola made his way back around Harvick on Lap 233 to reclaim the lead.

With 55 laps left in the race, Almirola had opened a more than one-second lead over Harvick. Kyle Busch was third, Elliott fourth and Kurt Busch fifth.

Bowyer made contact with the wall on Lap 257 to bring out another caution. Kyle Busch was the first off pit road and took over the lead when the race returned to green with 39 laps remaining in the race. He was followed by Harvick, Almirola, Truex and Kurt Busch.

Almirola had a terrible restart and dropped back to seventh one lap later as Kyle Busch held a small advantage over Harvick.

With 35 laps remaining, the top three drivers in the series were running first through third – Kyle Busch, Harvick and Truex.

Almirola had powered his way back up to fourth with 30 laps left only to see Elliott retake the position one lap later. With 25 laps left, Almirola was again back in fourth.

There were several reports of rain as Harvick closed in behind Kyle Busch with 15 laps left in the race.

Cla#DriverManufacturerLapsTimeLaps Led
1 4 united_states Kevin Harvick  Ford 301   12
2 18 united_states Kyle Busch  Toyota 301 1.877 36
3 10 united_states Aric Almirola  Ford 301 5.429 42
4 78 united_states Martin Truex Jr.  Toyota 301 7.287 83
5 9 united_states Chase Elliott  Chevrolet 301 10.234 23
6 31 united_states Ryan Newman  Chevrolet 301 13.747  
7 12 united_states Ryan Blaney  Ford 301 14.225  
8 41 united_states Kurt Busch  Ford 301 14.542 94
9 22 united_states Joey Logano  Ford 301 14.727  
10 48 united_states Jimmie Johnson  Chevrolet 301 15.496  
11 88 united_states Alex Bowman  Chevrolet 301 16.031  
12 42 united_states Kyle Larson  Chevrolet 301 16.849  
13 11 united_states Denny Hamlin  Toyota 301 17.410  
14 24 united_states William Byron  Chevrolet 301 18.160  
15 6 united_states Matt Kenseth  Ford 301 19.538  
16 20 united_states Erik Jones  Toyota 301 25.924  
17 21 united_states Paul Menard  Ford 301 26.494  
18 1 united_states Jamie McMurray  Chevrolet 301 29.717  
19 95 united_states Kasey Kahne  Chevrolet 301 30.294  
20 37 united_states Chris Buescher  Chevrolet 300 1 lap  
21 3 united_states Austin Dillon  Chevrolet 300 1 lap  
22 19 mexico Daniel Suarez  Toyota 300 1 lap  
23 13 united_states Ty Dillon  Chevrolet 300 1 lap  
24 43 united_states Darrell Wallace Jr.  Chevrolet 299 2 laps  
25 15 united_states Ross Chastain  Chevrolet 298 3 laps  
26 34 united_states Michael McDowell  Ford 298 3 laps  
27 72 united_states Corey Lajoie  Chevrolet 298 3 laps  
28 32 united_states Matt DiBenedetto  Ford 298 3 laps  
29 38 united_states David Ragan  Ford 298 3 laps  
30 17 united_states Ricky Stenhouse Jr.  Ford 296 5 laps 11
31 99 united_states Kyle Weatherman  Chevrolet 294 7 laps  
32 2 united_states Brad Keselowski  Ford 293 8 laps  
33 23 united_states Jones Blake  Toyota 289 11 laps  
34 51 united_states B.J. McLeod  Chevrolet 267 34 laps  
35 14 united_states Clint Bowyer  Ford 255 46 laps  
36 47 united_states A.J. Allmendinger  Chevrolet 19 282 laps  
37 00 united_states Landon Cassill  Chevrolet 13 288 laps  
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About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Event Loudon
Location New Hampshire Motor Speedway
Drivers Kevin Harvick
Teams Stewart-Haas Racing
Author Jim Utter
Article type Race report