Truex takes emotional win for Furniture Row Racing at Kansas
Martin Truex Jr. made it a clean sweep at Kansas Speedway on Sunday.
A loose wheel and penalty could not keep Truex from scoring his seventh Monster Energy Cup Series win of the season — including his second Kansas victory in 2017.
“Fight, fight, baby. Never give up, this one is for Jim, looking out for us here,” said Truex as he dedicated the win to Jim Watson, the Furniture Row Racing crewmen who passed away on Saturday night.
Ryan Blaney finished third followed by Chase Elliott, Denny Hamlin, Chris Buescher, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kevin Harvick, Aric Almirola and Kyle Busch. Jimmie Johnson finished 11th. Keselowski came home 13th.
Kyle Larson, Jamie McMurray, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Matt Kenseth failed to transfer to the Round of 8.
Harvick gained the lead for the final stage when Hamlin pitted on Lap 163. Kenseth ran second followed by Kyle Busch, Jones, McMurray, Blaney, Elliott, Dillon, Earnhardt Truex, Kurt Busch, Suarez, Kahne, Newman and Johnson when the race returned to green on Lap 167. Brad Keselowski and Stage 2 winner Denny Hamlin, both who were busted for speeding on pit road, restarted 25th and 26th, respectively.
After three laps, Harvick held the point folllowed by Kenseth, Kyle Busch, Jones, Blaney, Truex, McMurray, Elliott, Suarez, Austin Dillon, Kurt Busch, Johnson, Kahne, Bowyer, Earnhardt, Almirola, Ty Dillon, Trevor Bayne, Joey Logano, Chris Buescher and Ryan Newman. Keselowski moved up to 22nd by Lap 172. Hamlin ran 23rd.
Stenhouse flirted with disaster on Lap 172 when he hit the Turn 2 wall but ignited the caution two laps later when he slapped the Turn 3 wall. He was running 22nd before coming to pit road.
Harvick continued to lead followed by Kenseth, Kyle Busch, Jones, Blaney, Truex, McMurray, Elliott, Suarez, Dillon, Kurt Busch, Johnson, Kahne Bowyer, Almirola, Earnhardt, Ty Dillon, Bayne, Logano and Buescher. Keselowski had advanced to 22nd, Hamlin 24th.
Harvick remained on the track along with Kenseth, Kyle Busch, Blaney, Bowyer and Hamlin. Truex was the first lead lap driver out of the pits followed by Jones, McMurray, Suarez, Elliott, Austin Dillon, Johnson, Earnhardt, Kurt Busch, Kahne, Ty Dillon and Keselowski. Stenhouse restarted 31st, one lap down.
Harvick led the field to the Lap 180 restart. After two laps, Harvick held a .641-second lead over Kyle Busch. Kenseth, Blaney, Jones, Truex, Bowyer, McMurray, Elliott and Johnson completed the top 10.
Stenhouse returned to the pits on Lap 185. Harvick’s advantage extended to 1.471-seconds over Kyle Busch, Kenseth, Jones, Elliott, Blaney, Truex, McMurray, Bowyer and Johnson rounded out the top 10.
Johnson goes spinning
Johnson lost control of his car coming out of Turn 4 and slid down the front stretch grass to trigger the seventh caution on Lap 186. Harvick remained on the track with Kyle Busch, Jones, Elliott, Bowyer, Kurt Busch, Suarez, Dillon, Almirola, Ty Dillon, Kahne and McDowell, Truex pitted along with Kenseth, Blaney, Hamlin, Earnhardt Keselowski, Buescher, Logano, Patrick, Bayne, Allmendinger, Newman and Johnson.
“We have 75 laps to go, let’s get in this thing,” crew chief Chad Knaus told Johnson.
The field restarted on Lap 192 and Johnson failed to complete a lap before spinning out of Turn 3.
“Flat tire,” Johnson said. “Got loose again.”
Harvick held the point followed by Kyle Busch, Jones, Elliott, McMurray, Suarez, Truex, Bowyer, Kurt Busch, Blaney, Almirola, Ty Dillon, Kenseth, Earnhardt, Buescher, Hamlin, Ty Dillon, Patrick, Keselowski and Kahne. Johnson dropped to 27th, the last car on the lead lap.
Harvick controlled the Lap 198 restart but Kyle Busch took the lead coming out of Turn 2. The field hadn’t cleared the backstretch when Erik Jones lost control of his car, over-corrected and came across the nose of McMurray. Kenseth, Logano, Newman, Bowyer, Almirola, Suarez, Bayne, Elliott, Austin Dillon and Earnhardt received damage in the wreck. Kenseth
NASCAR issued the red-flag for 10minute, 10-seconds. The race returned to yellow and finally went green on Lap 205 with Busch in the lead. Harvick, Truex, Elliott, Earnhardt, Blaney, Johnson, Buescher, Kurt Busch, Hamlin, Keselowski, Blaney, David Ragan, Almirola and Michael McDowell completed the top 15.
Truex moved up to second on the next lap and set his sights on Busch. Harvick dropped to third followed by Elliott and Blaney. Kurt Busch, Keselowski, Earnhardt Hamlin and Johnson completed the top 10. Truex went underneath Busch for the lead in Turn 2 on Lap 211. Busch dropped .638-seconds behind after three-quarters of a lap. Elliott moved up to third and Harvick fell to fourth, complaining of a tight condition. Blaney ran fifth followed by Kurt Busch, Keselowski, Hamlin, Earnhardt and Johnson.
Truex held a two-second lead over Busch on Lap 215. Elliott, Blaney, Harvick, Kurt Busch, Keselowski, Hamlin, Earnhardt and Johnson completed the top 10.
Harvick pitted from sixth-place on Lap 221. Earnhardt moved up to sixth followed by Hamlin, Keselowski, Almirola and Buescher. Johnson ran 11th. Harvick dropped to 22nd, one lap down.
Truex held a five-second lead over Kyle Busch by Lap 230. Busch pit two laps later. Elliott moved up to second followed by Blaney, Kurt Busch, Earnhardt, Hamlin, Keselowski, Buescher Almirola and Johnson.
Allmendinger spun off of Turn 4 on Lap 235 to trigger the 10th caution. Truex led followed by Elliott, Blaney, Kurt Busch, Earnhardt, Hamlin, Keselowski, Buescher, Almirola and Johnson. Harvick was the second car, one lap down in 21st. Kyle Busch ran 22nd.
Pit road finally opened on Lap 239. Keselowski was busted for speeding in Section 8 and was sent to the tail of the field. He exited 12th and restarted 22nd
“There’s no way,” Keselowski said.
Bayne, who was 20th, took the wave around. Harvick and Busch cycled back to the lead lap in 20th and 21st, respectively.
Truex led the field to green on Lap 243 followed by Kurt Busch, Hamlin, Blaney, Elliott, Earnhardt, Buescher, Almirola, Johnson, Austin Dillon and Ragan. Blaney passed Hamlin for third on Lap 245. Elliott remained fifth followed by Buescher, Johnson, Earnhardt, Ragan and Almirola.
With 20 laps remaining, Truex’s lead was .682-seconds over Kurt Busch. Harvick moved up to 16th, Busch 18th and Keselowski 20th. Harvick moved up to 14th on Lap 249.
Kurt Busch trailed Truex by 1.038-seconds with 10 laps to decide the race. Blaney ran second followed by Elliott, Hamlin, Buescher, Earnhardt, Almirola, Johnson and Harvick. Kyle Busch recovered to 12th with Keselowski in 15th-place.
"I can't say enough about all these guys on the Furniture Row/Bass Pro Toyota, I'm just really proud of them," said Truex. "Our great friend Jim Watson, losing him last night, I want to send condolences to his family. He was a heck of a guy and a great worker and helped put a lot of speed in these Furniture Row Toyotas."
"I'm excited to get this one at Kansas. It feels really awesome. It's really Furniture Row's home track. It feels really good to win here. In the spring it was heartbreak and then today it looked like it wasn't going to happen and we persevered.
"I was definitely thinking about Jim and his family. It's crazy how things all work out."
|1||78||Martin Truex Jr.||Toyota||267||89|
|7||88||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet||267||11.895|
|23||34||Landon Cassill||Ford||265||2 laps|
|24||72||Cole Whitt||Chevrolet||263||4 laps|
|25||15||Reed Sorenson||Chevrolet||263||4 laps|
|26||33||Jeffrey Earnhardt||Chevrolet||261||6 laps|
|27||23||Corey Lajoie||Toyota||261||6 laps|
|28||55||Gray Gaulding||Toyota||259||7 laps|
|29||17||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||Ford||256||10 laps|
|30||51||B.J. McLeod||Chevrolet||254||13 laps|
|31||83||Brett Moffitt||Toyota||238||29 laps|
|32||47||A.J. Allmendinger||Chevrolet||232||35 laps|
|33||31||Ryan Newman||Chevrolet||203||64 laps|
|34||1||Jamie McMurray||Chevrolet||198||69 laps||1|
|35||77||Erik Jones||Toyota||197||70 laps|
|36||19||Daniel Suarez||Toyota||197||70 laps|
|37||20||Matt Kenseth||Toyota||197||70 laps|
|38||10||Danica Patrick||Ford||197||70 laps|
|39||42||Kyle Larson||Chevrolet||73||194 laps|
|40||00||Derrike Cope||Chevrolet||35||232 laps |
Matt Kenseth disqualified after crash, ending championship hopes
Round of 8 playoff grid set as four drivers are eliminated at Kansas