Dale Earnhardt Jr Wins in Martinsville

Dale Earnhardt Jr celebrates his win in Martinsville. Photo by Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images
Dale Earnhardt Jr celebrates his win in Martinsville. Photo by Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images

NASCAR visited Martinsville Speedway on Sunday afternoon, and it brought an emotional win for one driver, who also happened to be a driver not in the Chase.

The caution flew several times for incidents involving Brian Vickers and Kasey Kahne, starting on lap 159 when Vickers spun with some help from Kahne. Then, on lap 220, Vickers was able to spin Kahne, bringing out the caution. The spat between the two ended on lap 277, when Kahne came back to spin Vickers. The third incident brought a warning from NASCAR to stop along with the caution flag.

Two Chase contenders were caught up in incidents throughout the race, setting them back in the standings and causing them to be in a win-or-bust situation. On lap 227, Kevin Harvick and Matt Kenseth made contact with each other, causing Harvick to hit the wall and lose 40 laps because of repairs. Brad Keselowski also experienced issues during the race when he experienced a mechanical issue on lap 437, which resulted in a pile up between him, Kahne, Vickers, Martin Truex Jr., and Casey Mears.

Then, with 10 laps to go, the race was red-flagged following an accident between Marcos Ambrose and Kyle Larson. When the race resumed, Tony Stewart emerged as the leader following many cars pitting but soon fell back several spots due to the fact that he was on older tires.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. made his way to the front and gained his first win at Martinsville Speedway, giving him an emotional victory. The win came on the weekend of the 10th anniversary of the plane accident that took the lives of 10 people, including team owner Rick Hendrick’s brother, son, and nieces. He is also was the first driver not competing in the championship to win a Chase race this season.

Jeff Gordon, Ryan Newman, Tony Stewart, and Joey Logano rounded out the top five.

Brad Keselowski Wins in Talladega

Brad Keselowski celebrates his GEICO 500 win at Talladega Superspeedway. Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/NASCAR via Getty Images
Brad Keselowski celebrates his GEICO 500 win at Talladega Superspeedway. Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/NASCAR via Getty Images

NASCAR visited Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday, and a driver in danger of Chase elimination locked himself into the Eliminator round while four of the bigger names in the sport did not make it to the next round.

The championship runs of two of the eliminated drivers were effectively ended during the race due to accidents. On lap 103, Kyle Busch was involved in an accident that also caught up Tony Stewart, AJ Allmendinger, Aric Almirola, and Austin Dillon, among others. And on the first green-white-checkered restart following a debris caution, Dale Earnhardt Jr was involved in an accident that also caught up Paul Menard, David Gilliland, Greg Biffle, and Michael Annett.

The other two drivers to not advance were Kasey Kahne and Jimmie Johnson. Kahne was unable to make up a points gap between himself and the cut-off position. Due to an even larger points gap, Johnson needed to earn a win to advance but was unable to do so.

Instead, it was Brad Keselowski who came through with the much-needed win, advancing him to the Eliminator round. Matt Kenseth, Clint Bowyer, Landon Cassill, and Ryan Newman rounded out the top five.

Keselowski joins Joey Logano, Kevin Harvick, Ryan Newman, Denny Hamlin, Matt Kenseth, Carl Edwards and Jeff Gordon in the next round of the Chase.

Kevin Harvick Wins In Heated Bank Of America 500

Kevin Harvick celebrates his win at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Photo by Sarah Glenn/Getty Images
Kevin Harvick celebrates his win at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Photo by Sarah Glenn/Getty Images

NASCAR visited Charlotte Motor Speedway on Saturday night, and a freaky fast driver found his way into victory lane, locking himself into the Eliminator round of the Chase. As for what happened after the race? To quote Ron Burgundy from Anchorman, boy, that escalated quickly.

The theme of the weekend was engine loss, as it brought out the caution four separate times throughout the race. The second caution of the day came out on lap 95, when Clint Bowyer’s engine gave out. Then, on lap 135, the caution came out yet again when Paul Menard’s engine died. Josh Wise’s engine was the next to go on lap 221, bringing out the fourth caution of the night. The last caution of the night came with seven laps to go, when Brian Vickers’ engine was lost.

Kevin Harvick was able to take the lead on the lap 143 restart and was able to keep said lead for much of the race – 162 laps, to be exact – giving him the most laps lead for the race. He was able to keep the lead despite the late-race caution and went on to win the race. Jeff Gordon, Jamie McMurray, Joey Logano, and Kyle Busch rounded out the top five.

Towards the end of the race, there was much contact between Denny Hamlin and Brad Keselowski. There was also contact between Keselowski and Matt Kenseth towards the end of the race, resulting in Keselowski running into Kenseth on pit lane following the race. As Keselowski and Kenseth were making post-race contact, Keselowski inadvertently ran into the back of Tony Stewart as well. As a consequence, Stewart put his car in reverse and backed into the front end of Keselowski. After getting out of the cars, Hamlin attempted to fight with Keselowski but was held back by his crew. As Keselowski was walking back to his hauler, Kenseth went after Keselowski and the two started to fight before the crews stepped in. Needless to say, there was no lack of fireworks after the race.

Danica Patrick takes The Orange Cone for a ride during the race. Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images
Danica Patrick takes The Orange Cone for a ride during the race. Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images

Joey Logano Wins in Kansas, Advances to Eliminator Round

Joey Logano celebrates his Hollywood Casino 400 win in Victory Lane. Photo by Jared Tilton/Getty Images
Joey Logano celebrates his Hollywood Casino 400 win in Victory Lane. Photo by Jared Tilton/Getty Images

NASCAR visited Kansas Speedway, and while the race saw drama for some, it saw yet another victory for a familiar face. Kevin Harvick, who started on pole for the eighth time this season, was able to maintain an early lead. Then, following a debris caution on lap 70, Dale Earnhardt Jr was able to take the lead. Two more cautions followed quickly, with the first of the two coming on lap 78 when Kurt Busch hit the wall. The second came on lap 84 when there were two separate accidents on track, with Jimmie Johnson and Greg Biffle tangling in one and Justin Allgaier and Josh Wise making contact in the other. In another twist in the Chase, the caution came out again on lap 122 when Earnhardt hit the wall following a flat right front tire.

In a further turn in the race, the caution came out again on lap 160 when Brad Kesolowski made contact with the wall after his right front tire went down. Keselowski wasn’t the last one to have potential tire problems during the race either – Harvick made a pit stop on lap 214 when he believed his right front tire was going down as well. The last two cautions of the day came one after the other, with one coming on lap 230 when Biffle went into the wall. The final caution came on lap 236, when Kasey Kahne wrecked.

Joey Logano went on to win the race, advancing himself to the Eliminator round of the Chase. Kyle Larson, Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr, and Carl Edwards rounded out the top five.

Jeff Gordon Wins AAA 400 at Dover

Jeff Gordon celebrates his fourth win of the season in the AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway. Photo by Sarah Glenn/NASCAR via Getty Images
Jeff Gordon celebrates his fourth win of the season in the AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway. Photo by Sarah Glenn/NASCAR via Getty Images

NASCAR visited Dover International Speedway on Sunday for the elimination race of the Challenger Round of the Chase, and one driver got his fourth win of the season, advancing him to the Contender Round. Kevin Harvick, who was the pole sitter for the race, was able to keep the early lead despite a debris caution coming on lap 61. On lap 74, the caution came out again when Ricky Stenhouse Jr made contact with the wall. Harvick continued to lead, even though his run at the lead was interrupted by another debris caution on lap 125. On lap 148, however, Brad Keselowski was able to take the lead and kept it until a debris caution on lap 170 after JJ Yeley made contact with the wall. On the restart, Harvick was able to regain the lead.

Bad luck hit, though, when Harvick’s left front tire went down, bringing out the caution on lap 253. Keselowski then took the lead again on the restart, but Jeff Gordon was able to take the lead on lap 304. Gordon went on to win the race, with Brad Keselowski, Jimmie Johnson, Joey Logano, and Matt Kenseth rounding out the top five. The first four drivers to be eliminated from Chase contention were AJ Allmendinger, Aric Almirola, Kurt Busch, and Greg Biffle.

Joey Logano Wins In Chaotic Sylvania 300

Joey Logano celebrates his win at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sunday. Photo by Jerry Markland/NASCAR via Getty Images
Joey Logano celebrates his win at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sunday. Photo by Jerry Markland/NASCAR via Getty Images

NASCAR visited New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sunday afternoon, and one team was able to lock its second driver into the next round of the Chase playoffs. Brad Keselowski, who was the pole sitter for the race, was able to keep the early lead until the competition caution came on lap 36. On the restart, Denny Hamlin emerged as the leader of the race and held off the competition. However, Kevin Harvick was able to take the lead on lap 70. His run as the leader was interrupted on lap 105 for a debris caution.

Then, following a debris caution on lap 170, chaos hit and yellow fever ensued, striking multiple drivers competing for the championship.  On lap 179, there was an accident involving Denny Hamlin, Cole Whitt, Martin Truex Jr, and David Ragan. Hamlin would eventually finish 37th following further issues to his car. Then, the caution would come out again on lap 189, when there was contact between Matt Kenseth, Kasey Kahne, and Kyle Busch, which sent Kyle Busch spinning. Kyle Busch and his team went on to finish eighth, proving duct tape can fix almost anything. Brad Keselowski would bring out the caution on lap 193 following a spin and would eventually finish seventh. Kurt Busch experienced issues as well when his right front tire went down and he hit the wall as a result, bringing out the caution on lap 222.

With thirty laps to go, the caution came out yet again when Matt Kenseth and Paul Menard made contact. Following the restart, the race was able to stay green for about 25 laps with Joey Logano in the lead. Then, with eight laps to go, Jeff Gordon hit the wall after blowing a right front tire. On the lap after the restart, Tony Stewart spun on the front stretch. This caused a green-white-checkers finish, which would turn out to be the race’s only attempt at one.

Joey Logano went on to win the race, which advances him to the Contender round of the Chase with Team Penske teammate Brad Keselowski. Kyle Larson, Kevin Harvick, Jamie McMurray, and Jimmie Johnson rounded out the top five.

Brad Keselowski Wins In Chase Opener

Brad Keselowski does a celebratory burnout following his win in the MyAFibStory.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway. Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR
Brad Keselowski does a celebratory burnout following his win in the MyAFibStory.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway. Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR

NASCAR visited Chicagoland Speedway on Sunday afternoon, and a familiar face found their way to Victory Lane, punching their ticket to the Contender round of the Chase. Kyle Busch held the early lead after starting on pole but was overtaken by Jeff Gordon on lap 29. Jamie McMurray took the lead and held it until a debris caution came out on lap 66. Kyle Busch took the lead on the restart but Gordon eventually took the lead again on lap 88. He was able to lead until the caution waved again on lap 99 when Ryan Newman developed a flat rear tire. McMurray took the lead on the restart but Brad Keselowski passed him for the lead on lap 107. Keselowski was able to hold the lead again until a pit stop cycle under green saw Kevin Harvick take the lead.

Harvick was unable to enjoy the caution for too long before another caution came on lap 181 for debris on the track. He was able to continue leading following the restart, but soon three caution periods came in quick succession. The first of the three came on lap 230 when Carl Edwards developed a left rear flat tire. Then, on lap 245, the second of the three came when Clint Bowyer hit the wall. The final caution came on lap 258 when Danica Patrick hit the wall after tangling with Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. Harvick was able to remain in the lead on the restart.

Then, with 16 laps, to go, Keselowski found an opportunity to make a pass and went between Harvick and Kyle Larson to take the lead, eventually going on to win the race. Jeff Gordon, Kyle Larson, Joey Logano, and Kevin Harvick rounded out the top five.