(Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service/MRN.com) William Byron won the most important race Sunday afternoon — by inches off pit road.
Quick work by Byron‘s pit crew enabled the No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet driver to beat teammate Kyle Larson off pit road for an overtime restart in the Pennzoil 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, and that was the decisive factor in Byron‘s fifth career NASCAR Cup Series victory.
When Aric Almirola spun into the Turn 4 wall with four laps left of a scheduled 267, the race turned upside down. At that point, Larson held a two-second lead and appeared the almost certain winner.
After NASCAR called the fourth and final caution, Martin Truex Jr. stayed on the track, with Byron, Larson and most of the other contenders pitting for two tires. Byron‘s crew was a fraction of a second faster on the stop, and Byron claimed a front-row starting spot for the overtime to Truex‘s outside.
On the first overtime lap, Byron surged past Truex as the cars entered Turn 3 at the 1.5-mile track and pulled away to win by 0.622 seconds over Larson and 0.766 seconds over teammate Alex Bowman. It was the third time Hendrick Motorsports had finished 1-2-3 in a Cup Series event.
The drivers accomplished the feat with their fourth driver, Chase Elliott, watching from North Carolina with team owner Rick Hendrick. Elliott broke his left tibia in a snowboarding accident in Colorado on Friday and will miss multiple races as he recovers from surgery.
Josh Berry, substituting for Elliott, finished 29th and two laps down in his first race in NASCAR‘s Next Gen car.
In the overtime scramble, Bubba Wallace finished fourth and Christopher Bell fifth, both in Toyotas. Austin Cindric, who had been lapped at one point, recovered to run sixth as the top-finishing Ford driver. Truex, Justin Haley, Kevin Harvick and Daniel Suárez completed the top 10.
For a complete recap of Sunday’s race, plus, final race results, standings and more, follow this link to MRN’s website.
(Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service/NASCAR.com) ) Austin Hill ran down rookie pole winner Chandler Smith from three seconds back, passed him as the cars approached the white flag and held on to win Saturday’s Alsco Uniforms 300 NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
The victory was the second of the year for Hill, who won the season opener at Daytona International Speedway, and the driver of the No. 21 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet reached Victory Lane for the first time in Las Vegas and for the fourth time in his career.
Smith’s car tightened up in the closing laps, allowing both Hill and Justin Allgaier to pass him on the final two circuits. Hill finished 0.268 seconds ahead of Allgaier, who was closing on the final lap but ran out of time.
Kyle Busch ran fourth in his first Xfinity Series start of the season and lost his chance to complete a Las Vegas triple. Busch won Friday night’s NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race
John Hunter Nemechek won the first stage but lost track position when he had to pit on Lap 74 because of a loose wheel and never got back in contention for the win. Nemechek, who led 45 laps, finished sixth behind Hill, Allgaier, Smith, Busch and Josh Berry. Sam Mayer, Riley Herbst, Sheldon Creed and Daniel Hemric completed the top 10.
Find more on Saturday’s action in Vegas by following this link to NASCAR.com.
(Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service/MRN.com) Kyle Busch revels in changing circumstances.
Five days after winning at Auto Club Speedway in his second NASCAR Cup Series race in a Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet, Busch powered his own Kyle Busch Motorsports Chevy to victory in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.
Despite a couple of twitchy moments in traffic, Busch dominated Friday night‘s Victoria‘s Voice Foundation 200 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, leading 84 of 134 laps and beating runner-up Zane Smith to the finish line by 4.981 seconds.
The victory was Busch‘s first of the season, the fourth at his home track and the 63rd of his career, extending his own series record.
Ben Rhodes ran third, followed by Corey Heim and Ty Majeski. Christian Eckes, Stage 2 winner Carson Hocevar, Chase Purdy, Grant Enfinger and rookie Jake Garcia completed the top 10.
For a full rundown of where drivers finished and how the standings look, plus more, follow this link to MRN.com.