In racing, you don’t always need the best car to win. You just have to be consistent and be there when it counts.
Kevin Harvick stole the lead from Kyle Busch on the final restart to steal the win from the favorites and take the John R. Elliott HERO Campaign 300 presented by Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over. It is his 2nd win of the year and his 42nd career win in the series.
He only led 14 laps on his way to holding off pole sitter Brad Keselowski and Kyle Busch during the 5 lap sprint to the finish.
“I kind of got into them pretty good,” said Harvick, who also won Kentucky Speedway’s first Nationwide race in 2001. “We made a lot of mistakes, and this is just a frustrating place to race and frustrating weekend.”
Brad Keselowski dominated the opening portion of the night by leading all but 12 of the first 150 laps. However, on his green flag stop, he was caught speeding on the stop. It sent him back to 16th on the lap 157 restart following a debris caution.
He spent the remainder of the race trying to climb back up. But traffic prevented him from ever catching back up in time to get Harvick.
“The speeding put us a bit behind, but you’ve got to give credit to Kevin and his team,” Keselowski said after the race. “They were really fast at the end. We weren’t gaining on them.”
Paul Menard continues his strong momentum with a fourth place finish and he was followed by young gun Ryan Blaney. Richard Childress Racing claimed sixth through eight with last week’s winner Brendan Gaughan, Ty Dillon and Brian Scott. Sprint Cup rookie Kyle Larson was ninth and he was followed by veteran Elliott Sadler.
For JR Motorsports, the incredible season continues. This is their fifth win of the season which is their best in a single season. For Regan Smith, the struggles continue. On lap 169, Smith got up into Ryan Reed, causing a collision that left him multiple laps down. He would finish 28th.
Smith also lost the points lead to Sadler with the finish. Smith’s teammate Chase Elliott now trails Sadler by 4 and Smith trails by 8.
“All in all, it was a very strange night.”
Photo Credit: kevinharvick.com