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Chris Buescher Takes Shove from Brad Keselowski to Score Victory in Regular-Season Finale at Daytona

For the third time this season, Chris Buescher has graced victory lane in the NASCAR Cup Series, scoring the victory in Saturday’s Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway, with a push from Brad Keselowski.

There isn’t a single competitor in the NASCAR Cup Series field that has more momentum heading into the post-season than Chris Buescher, and the No. 17 Ford Mustang team for RFK Racing.

Scoring victories at Richmond, Michigan, and now Saturday’s Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway, Buescher has catapulted himself into the fourth-place seed in the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs.

As the race went into NASCAR Overtime, Buescher received a substantial push from teammate and RFK Racing co-owner Brad Keselowski, which saw the two cars remain hooked up for the majority of the two-lap run.

That level of commitment to each other made the duo unstoppable coming to the checkered flag, allowing both the No. 17 and No. 6 to cross the start-finish line while occupying the top-two positions.

“What a heck of a push from Brad [Keselowski] in those closing laps for that entire restart,” said Buescher post-race. “We lined up and worked to get connected. We hardly came disconnected those last couple of laps and it was a little squirrely at times, but that’s what we worked so hard to execute superspeedway racing for two years now.”

Buescher was able to beat Keselowski back to the start-finish line by less than a tenth of a second, scoring his third victory of the season, and the fifth of his NASCAR Cup Series career to date.

Aric Almirola and Chase Elliott, who entered Saturday’s event needed to secure a victory in order to qualify for the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs finished in third and fourth place, thus eliminating them from championship contention.

Joey Logano rounded out the top five finishers in the NASCAR Cup Series regular-season finale. Alex Bowman, Kyle Busch, William Byron, Kevin Harvick, and Corey LaJoie completed the top-10.

Finishing in 12th-place, Bubba Wallace secured the points necessary to lock himself into the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs for the first time in his career, by virtue of a repeat winner gracing the victory lane at Daytona International Speedway.

Chase Briscoe, who started from the pole and led a race-high 67 laps at Daytona, came home in 30th, after getting involved in the final accident of the evening, which occurred with five laps remaining.

That crash more notable involved teammate Ryan Preece, who took a massive tumble through the infield grass, barrel-rolling at least 10 times on the backstretch. The Stewart-Haas Racing driver was transferred to a local hospital following the incident.

UPDATE (2:20 AM ET): Stewart-Haas Racing says Ryan Preece is awake, alert, and mobile, but will remain overnight at Halifax Health Medical Center for continued observation. He will undergo further observation by medical personnel later this morning. An update will be provided in the afternoon.

UPDATE #2 (10:52 AM ET): Stewart-Haas Racing says that Ryan Preece was discharged from Halifax Health Medical Center earlier this morning, after his brutal crash late in Saturday’s NASCAR Cup Series event at Daytona. Preece is currently on his way home to North Carolina.

Martin Truex, Jr. – by virtue of finishing 24th in Saturday’s event at Daytona – locked up the regular-season championship by a whopping 48 points over Denny Hamlin and William Byron.

Meanwhile, with the regular season complete, the following 16 drivers are eligible to win the 2023 NASCAR Cup Series title: Ross Chastain, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Larson, Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin, Ryan Blaney, Chris Buescher, Martin Truex, Jr., Christopher Bell, Joey Logano, Bubba Wallace, William Byron, Michael McDowell, and Tyler Reddick.

2023 Coke Zero Sugar 400 Race Results from Daytona:

Race Results: NASCAR Cup Series Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona

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