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NASCAR: Race 34 of the 2018 AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway Race Write-Up

With three races left in the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, who will be the second driver to punch his ticket to Homestead?

One driver has locked a spot in the Championship 4 that will give him a shot to win the big prize.

We saw one last week when Joey Logano held off Martin Truex Jr. on the last lap at Martinsville Speedway.

And we expect to see another entertaining race this time at Texas Motor Speedway.

Sit back & relax as we get through 334 laps of action before the AAA Texas 500 waves under green.

Stage 1

Ryan Blaney leads Clint Bowyer at the start of green where Bowyer bumps Denny Hamlin nearly up high.

But Hamlin survived as he lost a couple of spots.

Though, his No.11 Toyota has a left rear tire rub as the race goes on before he pitted on Lap 10.

Bowyer, on the other hand, runs in 5th ahead of Paul Menard.

However, he slowed down at the same time as Hamlin which may indicate some damage sustained from the opening lap.

Both Bowyer and Hamlin returned on the track with two laps down.

Kevin Harvick later took over the lead-off Ryan Blaney then in Stage 1 as he struck the mini-win.

Stage 2

Kurt Busch tried to maintain his line on the outside at the next restart, But Harvick held off his No.41 on the inside as he continues to lead at Texas.

Not long later, Joey Logano gets around Ku. Busch for 2nd before William Byron crashed on Lap 97.

Byron picked up damage to his left front fender as the yellow came out.

Parker Kligerman nearly spun out at Turn 2 from the front bumper of Ross Chastain.

Although, Kligerman handled well to survive, but he has a flat left front tire.

On the other hand, Harvick led comfortably throughout this installment as he again wins in Stage 2.

Stage 3

Joey Logano leads comfortably ahead of Ryan Blaney with the high line on Lap 231.

Harvick quickly passed Blaney before he radioed over a possible loose wheel.

Although, Harvick raced on just behind Logano in 2nd.

On Lap 259, Harvick gets around Logano at Turn 2 as he regains the lead with no word regarding the vibration.

His No.4 Ford looks loose but knows Logano’s car looser than Harvick’s.

After the yellow came out on Lap 303, Blaney may have almost cleared Harvick at Turn 2.

But Harvick fended Blaney off at the restart with 31 laps to go before Matt DiBenedetto crashed his front hood at Turn 3.

That’s where Truex tagged DiBenedetto’s rear bumper that caused him to hit the inside wall.

On the next restart, Blaney regained the lead off Harvick trying to hold off his spot towards the finish line.

But Harvick got around Blaney on the inside line with 17 to go before Joey Gase spun at Turn 2 with 4 to go.

Daniel Suarez also received smoke with a left front flat tire when tagged the rear of Gase & AJ Allmendinger’s cars.

Nevertheless, with the overtime restart, it didn’t affect Harvick’s game at all.

Harvick went on to pull off to his eighth win of 2018 & 45th career Cup win by taking home the AAA Texas 500 trophy.

Results

  1. Kevin Harvick
  2. Ryan Blaney
  3. Joey Logano
  4. Erik Jones
  5. Kyle Larson
  6. Chase Elliott
  7. Kurt Busch
  8. Aric Almirola
  9. Martin Truex Jr.
  10. Austin Dillon
  11. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  12. Brad Keselowski
  13. Paul Menard
  14. Alex Bowman
  15. Jimmie Johnson
  16. William Byron
  17. Kyle Busch
  18. Ryan Newman
  19. Jamie McMurray
  20. AJ Allmendinger
  21. Trevor Bayne
  22. Ty Dillon
  23. Chris Buescher
  24. David Ragan
  25. Bubba Wallace
  26. Clint Bowyer
  27. Regan Smith
  28. Daniel Suarez
  29. Michael McDowell
  30. Denny Hamlin
  31. Parker Kligerman
  32. Ross Chastain
  33. Reed Sorenson
  34. Kyle Weatherman
  35. Landon Cassill
  36. J.J Yeley
  37. Joey Gase
  38. Matt DiBenedetto
  39. David Starr
  40. Corey LaJoie

Post-Race

Harvick’s win joins Joey Logano as the second driver to compete in the Championship 4 for the fourth time over the past five years.

He also has the most wins in a season at eight by drivers over 40 alongside:

  • Dale Jarrett, Seven in 1997
  • Matt Kenseth, Seven in 2013
  • Bobby Allison, Eight in 1982
  • David Pearson, Ten in 1976
  • Lee Petty, Eleven in 1956

Well, two out of four drivers have locked in the Championship 4 spot.

Six drivers will now turn into the last two to punch their ticket and join Logano & Harvick for the chance to win the Championship.

Who will it be?

  • Kyle Busch
  • Martin Truex Jr,
  • Kurt Busch
  • Chase Elliott
  • Aric Almirola
  • Clint Bowyer

Find out as Race 35 of the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series moves to ISM Raceway in Phoenix, Arizona.

Tune in to watch the Can-Am 500 on Sunday, November 11 at 2.30 PM ET LIVE on NBC.

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