Goodyear 400: Willy B romances the Lady in Black

In an overtime shootout with Kevin Harvick, William Byron scores the 100th win for the number 24.

However, the race was not always in the hands of Byron. Early on, it was the polesitter Martin Truex Jr. who held control of the race. The JGR driver led all but one lap in the event’s opening stage and scored his 57th stage victory.

Stage One Results:

  1. #19
  2. #24
  3. #23
  4. #1
  5. #8
  6. #6
  7. #47
  8. #4
  9. #45
  10.  #20

Under the caution flag pit stops, Bubba Wallace, who was running 3rd at the end of the stage, suffered a slow pit stop and was sent to mid pack.

The green flag dropped again and MTJ jumped out in front of William Byron. Truex led the race until the first cycle of green flag pit stops. After the cycle was complete, the #1 of Chastain hunted down the #19 and became the 3rd driver to lead the race all afternoon. 

The #19 stayed with him however, and on the last lap of the stage Truex was right behind the #1. Going into 3 the #1 got caught up behind the lapped car of his teammate the #99, resulting in him getting into the wall. Truex slid up the track into Chastain, sending him spinning into turn 3 and ending the stage.

Stage Two Results:

  1. #1
  2. #8
  3. #5
  4. #24
  5. #6
  6. #20
  7. #4
  8. #12
  9. #47
  10.  #19

The field restarted on lap 194 before the big one happened on the backstretch. The #43 of Erik Jones lost a wheel out of 2 and collected most of the field behind them. Among those involved was the #38, #54, #42 and the #2. The #3 of Austin Dillon and the #99 of Daniel Suarez were knocked out of the race.

The #1 of Chastain ran Larson up in turn 1 and took the lead but just 10 laps later the caution was thrown again due to the #47 of Stenhouse Jr. spinning in turn 3 with a flat tire.

The field restarted again with 78 to go and the #1 got out front and held the lead.

The cycle of green flag stops kicked off with 49 to go, with Larson in the #5 and the #20 of Bell pitting with 47 to go. The #1 pitted 2 laps later. As he rejoined, the #5 would storm out in front and take the lead on strategy.

The #5 would lead until 18 to go when Ryan Newman, making his return to cup series competition, spun in turn 4, bringing out another yellow flag.

13 to go saw the restart that was immediately halted by a huge wreck in the first corner. The #19 of Truex, who restarted 3rd, slid up into the #22 of Logano and got turned into the fence, causing a massive stack up behind them. The #45, #6, #9 and #4 were among those involved. Ahead of this melee, Chastain and Larson also got into the wall fighting for the top spot. 

The field restarted again with 6 to go, and entering turn 1 Larson and Chastain were side by side. At the midpoint of the corner, Chastain tried to push Larson up and got turned into the wall, allowing William Byron to sneak past and into the lead. 

For the overtime finish, Byron and Harvick lined up out front. In turn 1, Byron managed to sneak ahead and take his third win of the year so far in the Jeff Gordon Chrome Illusion throwback.

Behind him, Kevin Harvick recovered from the earlier incident with Truex for a strong 2nd place finish. 

After a mediocre day, Chase Elliott scored a third place while sporting his Dad’s Evernham number font, also recovering from the earlier accident with Truex.

Keselowski scored 4th place after a great run all day for the RFK #6 team.

Bubba Wallace bounced back from an early slow pitstop for a 5th place finish at the line.

Also worth mentioning, the #21 of Harrison Burton scored a 6th place finish after an incredibly strong showing all day for the Wood Brothers Racing team.

Featured Image Credits: Hendrick Motorsports on Twitter

Published by Joe Sell

Joe is a writer from Poole, UK. He is a fan of anything with four wheels and an engine and his favorite drivers are Ryan Blaney, Bubba Wallace and Daniel Suarez. Outside of racing, he enjoy watching sports and listening to country music.

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