Brad Keselowski Takes his Mustang to Victory Lane at Kansas

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Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS — May 11, 2019

Kevin Harvick(4) won last year’s Spring race at Kansas Speedway. It was his 5th victory of 2018. Harvick will start on the pole for tonight’s Digital Ally 400 and it could not come at a better time. Harvick is winless so far this year.

The race’s 400.5 distance is comprised of 267 laps around the 1.5-mile tri-oval. Stages are 80/80/107 laps.

Stage 1

NASCAR scheduled a competition caution for lap 30 due to overnight rains on the racetrack. Harvick took the green flag and began building a lead. His 4.5-second advantage disappeared when they brought out the caution after he led every lap from the start.

Photo Credit: Sean Gardner / Getty Images

Harvick restarted in 10th as nine drivers only took two tires on their stop. He was the first of those who changed all 4 Goodyears during the stop. Harvick drove back to the lead in 15 laps and won the Stage going away.

Stage 1 Results

Car Driver Stage Points
4 Kevin Harvick* 10
9 Chase Elliott 9
17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr.* 8
42 Kyle Larson 7
1 Kurt Busch 6
37 Chris Buescher 5
2 Brad Keselowski* 4
14 Clint Bowyer* 3
20 Erik Jones 2
22 Joey Logano 1

* Ford Mustang Drivers

Stage 2

The race returned to green on Lap 87 with Kurt Busch(1) in the lead, which he captured with a two-tire stop. Harvick restarted in 2nd. Five laps later Harvick was back in the lead. Green flag pit stops began with 40 laps to go in the Stage.

Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey / Getty Images

 

After everyone made stops, Chase Elliott(9) was in the lead. Adjustments made by Harvick’s crew hurt the handling of his car. He finished the stage in 2nd, as Elliott took the green and white checkered flag.

Stage 2 Results

Car Driver Stage Points
9 Chase Elliott 10
4 Kevin Harvick* 9
20 Erik Jones 8
88 Alex Bowman 7
17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr.* 6
37 Chris Buescher 5
1 Kurt Busch 4
14 Clint Bowyer* 3
18 Kyle Busch 2
42 Kyle Larson 1

* Ford Mustang Drivers

The Final Stage

Harvick again beat everyone off pit road after the Stage ending pit stops. Ryan Blaney(12) moved up to 2nd with a two-tire change. Erik Jones(20), Alex Bowman(88), and Kyle Busch(18) round out the top 5 for the Final Stage restart. Elliott had a slight issue with the right rear tire costing him several positions on pit road, he restarts 7th.

Harvick quickly moved out to a two-second lead. However, trouble struck with 90 laps to go. Complaining of an issue with the right front he brought the car to pit road with 88 laps to go. His crew changed the right side tires and removed a large piece of plastic wrap from the air duct on the left front. The stop dropped Harvick from the lead lap.

New Leader

The last three weeks must have seemed like a dream for Bowman. Three second-place Stage finishes and 2nd at both Talladega and Dover. He inherited the lead from Harvick and stretched it out to four seconds over Kyle Busch.

Final green flag pit stops started with 55 laps to go. Ryan Newman(6) entered pit road with 50 laps to go. During his stop, a tire escaped the attention of his crew and rolled into the tri-oval grass forcing NASCAR to bring out the caution. As pit stops were still in process, some of the leaders were caught a lap down.

After caution flag pit stops, the lucky dog went to Kyle Larson(42) and the lap down cars took the wave-around opportunity. Kyle Busch exited the pits with the lead. Unfortunately for Kyle he drove through too many pit stalls when entering his pit and was penalized sending him to the rear of the field.

Restart

Bowman moved to the front, followed by Elliott, Ricky Stenhouse Jr.(17), Chris Buescher(37), and Tyler Reddick(31). The green flag waved with 38 laps to the finish and Elliott immediately jumped into the lead. Followed closely by Bowman and Stenhouse.

Another Caution

Blaney had a tire explode with 28 laps to go. Debris on the track brought out another caution. Drivers at the end of the lead lap pitted, while the leaders stayed out. Harvick earned the luck dog by being the first car a lap down and returned to the lead lap making it 14 cars racing for the win.

Elliott and Bowman bring the field to green with 23 to go. They ran side-by-side for the entire lap as the pack spread out three and four wide behind them. Stenhouse went three-wide for the lead and took it away from Bowman. But not for long, as the battle for 3rd on back raged, Bowman took the front spot back.

With 15 to go, it was Bowman, Keselowski, and Jones nose to tail. They began to encounter lapped traffic with 12 to go. Seven laps from the finish Keselowski made a pass for the lead. Jones also managed to get past Bowman.

And Another Caution

With four laps to go, Matt DiBenedetto’s(95) engine expired and the caution waved again, sending the race to overtime. Just like the last yellow flag, cars at the end of the lead lap pitted and the leaders stayed out.

Keselowski, Jones, Bowman, Jimmie Johnson(48), and Chase Elliott lead the pack to the green-white-checkered flag finish.

Overtime

Keselowski took a one-car lead into Turn 1. As drivers scrambled for position behind him, he drove off to the win. Bowman finished 2nd for the 3rd week in a row. Bowman holds the unfortunate distinction of having finished in every position (2nd through 40th) except 1st during his Cup career. The way he’s driven the past few races, that 1st victory can be too far off.

Jones finished 3rd, Elliott 4th, and Bowyer 5th. Next week it’s the All-Star Race from Charlotte followed by the Coca-Cola 600 on Memorial Day weekend. Look for Live Coverage from The Lasco Press both Charlotte weekends.

Photo Credit: Sean Gardner / Getty Images

 

 

Results of the Digital Ally 400 from Kansas Speedway

Position Car Driver Behind Laps
1 2 Brad Keselowski 271
2 88 Alex Bowman 0.205 271
3 20 Erik Jones 0.381 271
4 9 Chase Elliott 0.497 271
5 14 Clint Bowyer 0.84 271
6 48 Jimmie Johnson 0.873 271
7 1 Kurt Busch 1.027 271
8 42 Kyle Larson 1.089 271
9 31 Tyler Reddick 1.113 271
10 37 Chris Buescher 1.446 271
11 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. 1.452 271
12 10 Aric Almirola 1.455 271
13 4 Kevin Harvick 1.697 271
14 41 Daniel Suarez 3.154 271
15 22 Joey Logano -1 270
16 11 Denny Hamlin -1 270
17 3 Austin Dillon -1 270
18 8 Daniel Hemric -1 270
19 19 Martin Truex Jr. -1 270
20 24 William Byron -1 270
21 36 Matt Tifft -1 270
22 32 Corey LaJoie -1 270
23 6 Ryan Newman -2 269
24 21 Paul Menard -2 269
25 47 Ryan Preece -2 269
26 34 Michael McDowell -2 269
27 38 David Ragan -2 269
28 13 Ty Dillon -2 269
29 43 Bubba Wallace -2 269
30 18 Kyle Busch -3 268
31 15 Ross Chastain -3 268
32 12 Ryan Blaney -7 264
33 52 Bayley Currey -8 263
34 77 Quin Houff -8 263
35 27 Reed Sorenson -9 262
36 95 Matt DiBenedetto -9 261
37 0 Landon Cassill -10 261
38 46 Joey Gase -13 258
39 66 Timmy Hill -14 257
40 51 Cody Ware -26 245

Points / Playoff Standings

Rank Driver Points Wins
1 Kyle Busch 467 3
2 Brad Keselowski* 417 3
3 Denny Hamlin 404 2
4 Martin Truex Jr. 396 2
5 Joey Logano* 477 1
6 Chase Elliott 404 1
7 Kevin Harvick* 421 0
8 Kurt Busch 377 0
9 Clint Bowyer* 351 0
10 Ryan Blaney* 340 0
11 Aric Almirola* 334 0
12 Alex Bowman 322 0
13 Daniel Suarez* 315 0
14 Erik Jones 298 0
15 Kyle Larson 296 0
16 Jimmie Johnson 292 0
Playoff Cut Line
17 Austin Dillon 291 0
18 Ryan Newman* 284 0
19 William Byron 277 0
20 Paul Menard* 267 0

*Ford Mustang Drivers