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Kevin Harvick Wins NASCAR Race At Michigan, Ganassi’s Kyle Larson Finishes 3rd

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Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Mobil 1 Ford, and his son, Keelan, pose with the trophy after winning the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Consumers Energy 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 11, 2019 in Brooklyn, Michigan. Photo Credit: Quinn Harris/Getty Images

BROOKLYN, MI (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Stewart Haas Racing’s (SHR) Kevin Harvick picked up his second victory of the season passing Joey Logano with 17-laps to go to win Sunday’s Consumers Energy 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) Race at Michigan International Speedway (MIS).

“We just had a really fast car all weekend,” said Harvick.  “Our car handled really well today, and with the multiple lanes, we were able to run all three lanes pretty well and make our way through traffic.  So just really proud of everybody on our Mobil 1 Ford, everybody from Busch and Hunt Brothers and Jimmy John’s and everybody back at the shop from Haas Automation and Stewart-Haas Racing, just put a really fast car on the racetrack and we were able to capitalize on it, and that’s always fun.”

Chip Ganassi Racing’s Kyle Larson finished third in the No. 42 McDonalds Camaro, right behind Joe Gibbs Racing’s Denny Hamlin, who finished second.

“Our McDonald’s Chevy handled really well today when we had four tires on it,” said Larson.  “When we would do two rights, I’d be way too tight, and then we’d put two lefts on and I was way too loose, but then that finally balanced out and I was back to being good and running really fast laps at the end.”

Larson was running in the top 10 with a couple of laps remaining when a number of cars either had to go to pit road for fuel, with some running out of gas on the last lap, so Larson finished better than even he thought.

“The last thing I knew I was running like ninth and I passed a couple guys, but so yeah, I guess more people ran out of fuel than I thought,” said Larson.  “I don’t really know what happened there.  But yeah, it worked out.”

Larson’s third place finish solidified his spot to qualify for NASCAR’s playoffs with three races remaining in the regular season.  Larson now sits in 13-place in the playoff standings, 71-points above the cut-off.

Three Rivers Karting

“That was a great point saver, well above the cut line now, so happy about that,” said Larson.

Larson’s teammate Kurt Busch ran in the top 10 all day and was running 7th on lap 198 of the 200-lap event, but was one of many drivers trying to save fuel to make it to the end of the race, so he slid back to 8th as he took the white flag and ran out on the back straightaway and fell to 23rd.

Busch now sits in 8th place in the playoff standings with 1-win and 6-playoff points. Hendrick Motorsports Chase Elliott s in 7th place with 2-wins and 14-playoff points.  Elliott’s teammate Alex Bowman is behind Busch in 9th place with 1-win and 5-playoff points.

Clint Bowyer is in the 16th and final playoff spot, 6-points above the cut line.  Bowyer’s SHR teammate Daniel Suarez is in the 17th position.  The top 16 in points qualify for NASCAR’s playoff.

The next Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Race is Saturday night August 17, 2019 at Bristol Motor Speedway.

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NASCAR

Chip Ganassi Fined And Suspended By NASCAR

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Chris Graythen/Getty Images

DAYTONA BEACH, FL (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Team owner Chip Ganassi ended up on the NASCAR penalty report following this weekend’s events at Daytona International Speedway.

Ganassi was fined $30,000 and suspended from the next NASCAR Cup Series Championship Points Event which is Sunday at Homestead Miami Speedway.

Three Rivers Karting

Ganassi violated section 12.8.1.b of the NASCAR Rule Book “for bringing into the competition area a non-essential individual that was restricted from the footprint”, essentially brining someone not authorized inside the ‘bubble’ which part of the sanctioning body’s COVID-19 protocol.

Chip Ganassi Racing will be permitted to enter their cars, the No. 1 Monster Energy/Gearwrench Chevrolet driven by Kurt Busch and the No. 42 McDonald/Clover Camaro driven by Ross Chastain, in the event.

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NASCAR

Christopher Bell Wins NASCAR Cup Series Road Course Race At Daytona

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James Gilbert/Getty Images

DAYTONA BEACH, FL (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Christopher Bell picked up his first NASCAR Cup Series win in Sunday’s road course race at Daytona International Speedway.

Bell passed leader Joey Logano with two laps to go to give Joe Gibbs Racing their second win of the weekend.  JGR’S Ty Gibbs won Saturday’s Xfinity Series race.

“I knew I was faster than him,” said Bell. “I ran him down from a while back. All I had to do was get a couple good corners and get away. The last thing I wanted was coming down to the checkered flag with him on my bumper.”

“I was trying to keep him (Bell) behind me,” said Logano. “We gambled by staying out and I’d say it paid off overall, but you just hate being so close. He started catching me a second a lap and it wasn’t like I blew any corners or anything. We just got beat, plain and simple.”

JGR’s Denny Hamlin started fourth and finished third in the No. 11 Toyota and said he just didn’t have the speed of the frontrunners.

“For me, I’m stuck at par right now,” said Hamlin, an avid golfer off the track. “I can’t break par. I’m just right there third to fourth fastest, and that’s where I’m at. I think the more times I run, the tighter that gap is going to get.”

Three Rivers Karting

Chip Ganassi Racing’s Kurt Busch rallied from an off-track excursion while leading the race to finish fourth.

“I just crossed over that fine line of grip,” said Busch.  “The tires, at this track with the worn out asphalt of the infield section, it’s really easy to step over that line.  Matt McCall (crew chief) and all my guys, they had an awesome day on pit road, strategy wise and with their (pit) stops to get us that track position and to get us back up front.”

Team Penske’s Brad Keselowski rounded out the top 5.

“It was a front, back, front, back kind of race, but the Discount Tire team, we just didn’t give up and kept working on it,” said Keselowski. “Eventually, the race came to us. We caught some breaks for sure and made the most of it. It was just one of those never-give-up kind of races.”

The race featured 12-lead changes among 7 drivers and 8-caution flags for 12-laps.

The Series concludes the early season Florida swing next Sunday, February 28 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Daytona RC Results

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NASCAR

Chip Ganassi Racing’s Kurt Busch and Ross Chastain Ready For Road Course Racing

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Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

DAYTONA BEACH, FL (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Chip Ganassi Racing’s Kurt Busch and Ross Chastain are looking forward to turning left and right at this Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series O’Reilly Auto Parts 253 on the road course at Daytona International Speedway.

Chastain will start ninth thanks in part to a seventh place finish in the season-opening Daytona 500, his first Cup Series start in the No. 42 Chevrolet.

“A great way to kick off the year with this No. 42 car,” said Chastain. “We tore it up at the end – hit the wall a ton coming to the checkered, but still finished seventh. We got a few stage points. Thank you to everyone at Clover, McDonald’s, AdventHealth, Caregility. I still have some learning to do.”

Busch will start 17th on Sunday after being an innocent victim of a lap 14 accident.  The accident was triggered when Christopher Bell attempted to bump draft Aric Almirola but did not hit him cleanly and subsequently sending Almirola into the wall in front of the rest of the field.

Three Rivers Karting

“All those boys started pushing way too hard, way too early, and we got wrapped up in it,” reflected Busch. “Got stuck in the mud, had too much damage and never really got to race. We had to ride around all day.”

Busch ultimately finished 22nd, which left him sitting in 20th place in the Cup Series drivers points standings.

“We’ll dig out of this hole,” said Busch, the 2004 Cup Series Champion. We’re a great team; we’re ready for this.”

The green flag is schedule to drop at 3 p.m.

Daytona RC Starting Lineup

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