Kyle Larson wins NASCAR Cup race at Michigan in overtime
Kyle Larson slipped between cars on an overtime restart, capping his wild weekend with a victory in Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway.
Larson was in the spotlight after team owner Chip Ganassi allowed him to go to Iowa to compete in the Knoxville Nationals on Saturday. He finished second at that sprint car event before returning to Michigan and earning his third Cup victory of the season.
He has won the last three Cup races at MIS, the first driver to do that since Bill Elliott, who won four straight from 1985-86.
Furniture Row Racing teammates Martin Truex Jr. and Erik Jones finished second and third.
Larson won by 0.31 seconds in his No. 42 Chevrolet. Brad Keselowski and Truex won the first two stages.
Truex was in the lead, about a second ahead of Jones, before a late caution came out because of a spin by Michael McDowell. That forced overtime.
A red flag for oil on the track only added to the drama, and when the race restarted for the final time, Larson — who hadn’t led at all to that point — drove to the right of Jones and passed to the inside of Truex.
It was Larson’s fourth career Cup victory and ended a mini-slump in which he had finished out of the top 20 in three straight races.
Keselowski, the pole winner, led for 105 laps, but finished 17th. He is now winless in 17 Cup races at his home state’s track.
Dale Earhhardt Jr., who has two wins at Michigan, finished 14th in his final race at MIS before he retires at the end of this season.
The race was originally scheduled for 200 laps and 400 miles. It ended up being 202 laps. Keselowski led almost the entire way through the 60-lap first stage, only giving up the top spot briefly during a pit cycle. Keselowski was second to Truex in the second stage.
Aside from the end of the first two stages, there were no yellow flags until lap 140, after Kasey Kahne slid in front of Daniel Suarez and slammed into the wall, taking them both out.
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