|Date: Sept. 9, 2017
Event: Federated Auto Parts 400 (Round 26 of 36)
Series: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
Location: Richmond (Va.) Raceway (.75-mile oval)
Format: 400 laps, broken into three stages (100 laps/100 laps/200 laps)
Start/Finish: 6th/15th (Running, completed 404 of 404 laps)
Point Standing: 6th with 2,015 points, 38 points out of first – IN THE PLAYOFFS
Note: Race ended in overtime, going four laps past its scheduled 400-lap distance
Race Winner: Kyle Larson of Chip Ganassi Racing (Chevrolet) in overtime
Stage 1 Winner: Kyle Busch of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)
Stage 2 Winner: Martin Truex Jr. of Furniture Row Racing (Toyota)
Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-100):
● Kevin Harvick started sixth, finished eighth and earned three bonus points.
● The No. 4 Ford came to pit road on lap 36 while racing in seventh for a four-tire stop and gained three positions on pit road.
● The team battled a tight-center handling condition throughout the stage.
● The Jimmy John’s Ford came to pit road on lap 89 in the eighth position for four tires, fuel and adjustments. Several cars stayed out.
● The No. 4 team restarted 10th on lap 92 and raced to eighth in the closing laps of the stage.
Stage 2 Recap (Laps 101-200):
● Started seventh and finished 19th.
● The Jimmy John’s Ford struggled with a car that was too tight in the center of the corner and loose off.
● The No. 4 team suffered a damaged grill and a hole in the nose of the car that was noticed on lap 185.
● Harvick came to pit road for repairs and adjustments at the conclusion of Stage 2.
Final Stage Recap (Laps 201-400):
● Started 23rd, finished 15th.
● Harvick raced his way back up to the 15th position by the caution on lap 255 and noted the adjustments helped.
● The Jimmy John’s Ford came to pit road on lap 258 for four tires, fuel and air pressure adjustments and came out in 14th.
● Harvick came to pit road under green-flag conditions on lap 313 and raced his way up to the top-five by lap 341 on fresh tires.
● The No. 4 fell back to the 11th position before returning to pit road under green-flag conditions on lap 358.
● The pit strategy allowed the No. 4 team to race its way back to 15th in the closing laps.
● The Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond marked the 600th NASCAR Cup Series start of Harvick’s career.
● Harvick finished eighth in Stage 1 to earn three bonus points.
● The race featured seven caution periods for a total of 38 laps.
● Nineteen of the 39 drivers in the Federated Auto Parts 400 finished on the lead lap.
● Kyle Larson won the Federated Auto Parts 400 to score his fifth career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series victory, his fourth of the season and his first at Richmond. He led runner-up Joey Logano across the finish line as the race ended under caution.
● Martin Truex Jr. leads the championship standings with 2,053 points and holds a 20-point advantage over his nearest pursuer, Larson.
1. Martin Truex Jr. (2,053 points)
2. Kyle Larson (2,033 points, -20)
3. Kyle Busch (2,029 points, -24)
4. Brad Keselowski (2,019 points, -34)
5. Jimmie Johnson (2,017 points, -36)
6. Kevin Harvick (2,015 points, -38)
7. Denny Hamlin (2,013 points, -40)
8. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (2,010 points, -43)
9. Ryan Blaney (2,008 points, -45)
10. Chase Elliott (2,006 points, -47)
11. Ryan Newman (2,005 points, -48)
12. Kurt Busch (2,005 points, -48)
13. Kasey Kahne (2,005 points, -48)
14. Austin Dillon (2,005 points, -48)
15. Matt Kenseth (2,005 points, -48)
16. Jamie McMurray (2,003 points, -50)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 4 Jimmy John’s Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing:
“I wish we were in a better spot performance-wise. We’re just not running very good, and we have to figure out how to run better. Otherwise it’s going to be a short 10 weeks.”
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!