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Thursday, September 29, 2022
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Kyle Larson Bodies Chase Elliott on Late-Race Restart, Sweeps Weekend at Watkins Glen

 

Kyle Larson Hendrick Motorsports Watkins Glen International Chase Elliott NASCAR Cup Series NASCAR
Kyle Larson – and Hendrick Motorsports drivers – completed the weekend sweep at Watkins Glen International, bodying Chase Elliott to take the lead with five laps to go and grab his second win of the weekend, and the NASCAR Cup Series season. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

As of late, Watkins Glen International has been a track strictly dominated by Hendrick Motorsports, a trend that continued in Sunday’s Go Bowling at The Glen, with Kyle Larson claiming his second consecutive victory at the 2.45-mile circuit.

Larson, who also captured the win in Saturday’s Xfinity Series event, was able to take advantage of a late-race restart to push Chase Elliott – his Hendrick Motorsports teammate – wide in the first corner, dropping the race’s dominator back as far as fifth.

In an almost identical situation to Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series event, Larson was able to make the final pass for the victory with five laps to go, before having to hold off-road course veteran AJ Allmendinger for the victory.

Joey Logano was able to make a heroic defense to keep the third position, as Chase Elliott attempted to get himself back into contention for the victory, but could only advance far enough for a fourth-place result.

On a landmark afternoon for Trackhouse Racing, Daniel Suarez carried the banner for the organization with a fifth-place finish.

After leading 14 laps throughout the early portion of the event, Michael McDowell recorded a sixth-place result, marking a career-high 10th top-10 result for the Phoenix, Arizona native.

Tyler Reddick, Christopher Bell, Chris Buescher, and Erik Jones completed the race’s top-10 finishers.

Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series event at Watkins Glen International brought representation from seven different countries in the 39-car field, the most in series history, which included the highly-anticipated debut of Kimi Raikkonen in the PROJECT91 entry.

Raikkonen was running inside the top-10 for a good portion of the race’s second stage, but pit strategy would put the driver into the middle of the pack, ultimately leading to a crash on lap 46, which ended the F1 Champion’s day early.

Daniel Suarez finished in fifth, while Mike Rockenfeller finished 30th, Loris Hezemans 33rd, Daniil Kvyat 36th, and Kyle Tilley 39th.

Sunday’s race also confirmed the post-season fates of multiple drivers, as a repeat winner has ensured that the NASCAR Cup Series will not see 17 winners in the regular season, meaning all race winners will make the post-season.

Also of note, Chase Elliott has clinched the regular-season championship – one race before the end of the regular season – which will award him an additional 15 Playoff Points to carry throughout the series’ 10-race post-season.

Up next for the NASCAR Cup Series is the regular-season finale from Daytona International Speedway, where many drivers will compete for the chance to draft their way into the Playoffs with a victory at the 2.5-mile superspeedway.

Joseph Srigley
Joseph Srigleyhttp://tobychristie.com
University of Windsor | Business Administration - Supply Chain & Data Analytics Editor at TobyChristie.com

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