NASCAR: Larson wins XFS, Byron takes Cup, Eckes breaks through in Truck Series

(Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service/NASCAR.com) William Byron took full advantage of a late on-track incident between Ross Chastain and Kyle Larson to triumph in Sunday’s Goodyear 400 at Darlington Raceway and become the first three-time winner in the NASCAR Cup Series this season.

For Byron, the victory was sweet redemption for last season’s spring race at the ‘Lady in Black,’ where Joey Logano’s bump-and-run denied Byron his first victory at the fabled speedway.

Follow this link to NASCAR.com for a complete recap of Sunday’s race.


(Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service/MRN.com) In a fitting end to a true Darlington slugfest, Kyle Larson won Saturday‘s Shriners Children‘s 200 after bouncing off the wall at the Turn 4 exit and knocking John Hunter Nemechek into the inside SAFER barrier 100 yards short of the finish line.

With the help of two opportune cautions, Larson recovered from a speeding penalty that sent him to the rear of the field for the start of the Final Stage.

Restarting behind race winner Nemechek for the final green-flag run with seven laps left, Larson stalked the No. 20 Toyota and charged into the lead on the final lap, as the top two cars made side-to-side contact on at least three occasions during the run to the checkers.

The victory was Larson‘s first of the season in the NASCAR Xfinity Series and his first at Darlington in any of NASCAR‘s top three divisions. It was Larson‘s 14th career Xfinity win in his only start so far this year.

Nemechek, who beat Larson in a photo finish to win Stage 2, had to settle for fifth after the last-lap crash. Justin Allgaier claimed the runner-up spot, followed by Cole Custer, who pitted for fresh tires on Lap 137 and charged forward from 16th after the final restart on Lap 141. Austin Hill was fourth in a damaged car.

For more on Saturday’s race, follow this link to MRN.com.


(Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service/MRN.com) After five weeks of frustration, Christian Eckes got the rebound he needed on Friday night at Darlington Raceway.

Leading a race-high 82 of 158 laps, Eckes scored a convincing double-overtime victory in the Buckle Up South Carolina 200, the ninth event on the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series schedule.

The win was Eckes‘ second of the season and third of his career. It followed a string of five races in which the driver of the No. 19 McAnally-Hilgemann Racing Chevrolet — dressed Friday in a throwback tribute to new NASCAR Hall-of-Famer Hershel McGriff — had finished 30th three times and 15th twice.

For more on Friday’s race, follow this link to MRN.com.

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