Monday, October 2, 2023

Kyle Larson Makes Late Move on Daniel Suarez, Captures Victory in Thrilling Race at Auto Club

Kyle Larson captured his first victory of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season, continuing the incredible run that won him the series’ championship last season. PC: Hendrick Motorsports | Twitter

It isn’t really a surprise to see Kyle Larson in victory lane, especially on a two-mile oval, but considering the way in which Sunday’s Wise Power 400 played out, it might be a shock to see him in victory lane today.

Officially, Larson ended up leading the final seven laps of the race, but that doesn’t even fully detail the chaos that unfolded in the race’s final laps.

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On a restart with four laps to go, Daniel Suarez was able to claim the lead from the defending series champion, taking his No. 99 Freeway Insurance in pursuit of Trackhouse Racing’s first win.

However, Larson regrouped quickly and made the pass on Suarez before getting back to the start-finish line, preventing the Monterrey, Mexico-native from officially leading a lap, ultimately leading the field to his 17th NASCAR Cup Series win.

The intense battle for the victory wasn’t an outlier though, as no driver was able to lead more than 18 laps consecutively throughout the 200-lap event, with the race featuring an incredible 32 lead changes.

Leading a race-high 90 laps on Sunday, Tyler Reddick was relegated to a 24th-place finish after cutting a tire with 47 to go. On the exit of turn two, William Byron got loose trying to move around Reddick, sending himself and Reddick into the outside wall.

Reddick wasn’t the only leader to find issues, after Chase Elliott made contact with the wall multiple times, eventually spinning out before the first stage’s conclusion. Then, by the time Elliott had rebounded, contact with his teammate caused significant damage to his vehicle, and later, a second spin.

Austin Dillon – getting revenge for his teammate’s issues — recorded a second-place finish, with Erik Jones finishing in third for Petty GMS Motorsports, in their second-ever race. Daniel Suarez and Joey Logano rounded out the race’s top-five finishers.

Aric Almirola was able to rebound from a mid-race slide to finish in sixth, despite losing a lap, while his teammate Kevin Harvick finished seventh, after a crash early in practice forced the team to repair the No. 4 Ford.

Kurt Busch – who failed tech three-times on Saturday and had to serve a pass-through penalty — finished 8th, with Daniel Hemric, who at one point was six laps down, finished in ninth. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. rounded out the top-10.

Next, the NASCAR Cup Series heads to Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the second-leg of the series’ “West Coast Swing”. Kyle Larson will look to defend his victory from the track’s spring race last season, as he looks to have another championship-caliber season.

Race Results, Caution Flags, Lap Leaders, Incidents, Chase Grid and MORE!

Race Results: 2022 NASCAR Cup Series Wise Power 400

Joseph Srigley
Joseph Srigley
University of Windsor | Business Administration - Supply Chain & Data Analytics Editor at

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  1. Great race coverage, but does not begin to ease my disgust with revolting race conduct of Larson with his teammate Elliott. That hard working #9 driver battled back from 2 lap deficit just so his teammate could squeeze him off track and into wall without even looking around…..don’t like that wizened little piece of dirt. Elliott may not have had the stamina to stay in first place, but Larson didn’t need to mow him down. If I need assistance crossing the street, I wouldn’t want Larson to be the one offering to help. That little piece of crap would probably leave me in the middle of a 6 lane superhighway and steal my rollater.

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