The Latest: Suarez joins Bowman in NASCAR All-Star race
CONCORD, N.C. (AP) The Latest on the NASCAR All-Star race (all times local):
Kevin Harvick continued his dominating season, winning the NASCAR All-Star race on Saturday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway to take home $1 million.
Harvick won two of the first three stages and beat Daniel Suarez to the finish line to claim his second All-Star race victory. It came exactly 11 years after his first win in this event.
Harvick has already won five times on the Cup Series circuit this year, including the last two races at Dover and Kansas.
Saurez, who had to win a stage of the Open qualifying race to reach the main event, finished second.
Joey Logano was third.
A crash involving Logano and Kyle Larson with two laps left set up a final two-lap shootout.
Kyle Busch, Brad Keselowski, Kurt Busch and Clint Bowyer were among those caught up in a wreck late in the third stage.
A huge wreck at the end of the third stage has ended several top drivers’ chances of winning the NASCAR All-Star race and its $1 million prize.
As the cars went four-wide in turn 3 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. clipped Martin Truex Jr., sending his car spinning into traffic. Kyle Busch, Clint Bowyer, Brad Keselowski and Kurt Busch also were caught up in the crash. Only Kyle Busch was able to return to the track.
Kevin Harvick passed Daniel Suarez in a two-lap overtime to win the third stage. Harvick also won the first stage.
The wreck came on a two-lap overtime period to end the third stage. Stages are not allowed to end under caution.
Kyle Busch has won the second stage of the NASCAR All-Star race. Daniel Suarez was second and Kyle Larson finished third.
Busch, who won last year’s All-Star race, has led 19 of the 50 laps in a race that has lacked drama – and passing.
For the first time ever, cars are running the All-Star race with restrictor plates similar to those used on the big speedways in Talladega and Daytona. The cars are also carrying a six-inch spoiler on the rear deck, a 2014-style front splitter and aero ducts. That was all with the idea to increase passing opportunities, but so far there has been very few passes in an uneventful race.
A.J. Allmendinger had been running up near the lead group, but grazed the wall and was forced to pit.
Kevin Harvick continued his dominance in NASCAR, winning the first 30-lap stage of the All-Star race. Harvick has already won five Cup races this season, including back-to-back wins at Dover and Kansas coming into this weekend.
Harvick led 25 of 30 laps in the opening stage.
Martin Truex Jr. was second, and Kyle Busch third.
But the story of the first stage might have been A.J. Allmendinger, who came from the back of the field to finish in fourth place.
Kurt Busch has crashed on the third lap of the NASCAR All-Star race.
Busch’s argot loose in the third turn and spun into the wall, causing damage to the back left fender of his car. Busch took the No. 41 Ford into the pits. His crew worked on the back fender and he has returned to the race but is one lap down.
A.J. Allmendinger edged Chase Elliott and Erik Jones to win the final 10-lap shootout of the Open and earn a spot in the NASCAR All-Star race.
It is the second time Allmendinger has won the Open.
He used a nifty blocking move on Jones on the final lap and held on to win to advance for a shot at $1 million.
”We were either crashing or I was going to win this thing,” Allmendinger said.
He joins Alex Bowman and Daniel Suarez, who won the first two stages of the Open.
It wasn’t all bad news for Elliott. Shortly after the race he learned he advanced to the All-Star race by virtue of the winning the fan vote. Alex Bowman and Daniel Suarez won the first two stages of the Open and will also be in the 21-car field.
Daniel Suarez has joined Alex Bowman in qualifying for the NASCAR All-Star race.
Suarez won the second stage of the Open and will have a shot at the $1 million first place prize. Bowman won the first stage.
”I’m happy to be in the big show one more time,” Suarez said.
The winner of the third and final stage of the Open – a 10-lap shootout – will also advance to the All-Star race. The final spot in the 21-car field will be filled by the winner of the fan vote.
Alex Bowman has won the first stage of the Open on Saturday night to qualify for the NASCAR All-Star race.
Three other drivers will advance to the All-Star race – two more from the Open and another who wins the fan vote – to fill out the field of 21 drivers racing for the $1 million first place price.
”I will take it for sure,” Bowman said. ”It means a lot to all of these guys to be a part of that.”
Bowman, racing in his No. 88 Chevy, edged Erik Jones to capture the first of three stages.
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