Larson wins at The Glen, eyes regular-season title

NASCAR

WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. — Kyle Larson gained the NASCAR Cup Collection race at Watkins Glen Worldwide on Sunday, constructing an enormous lead within the remaining stage and conserving Hendrick Motorsports teammate Chase Elliott at bay over the ultimate laps.

Elliott was searching for his third straight victory at The Glen however was relegated to the again of the sector earlier than the race when his No. 9 Chevrolet failed inspection twice. He made a gallant cost within the remaining section however could not overcome Larson’s huge lead and crossed the end line 2.45 seconds behind.

Martin Truex Jr., Kyle Busch, and Denny Hamlin rounded out the highest 5.

Larson additionally held off Elliott in additional time to win on the street course at Sonoma in June.

“It is superior,” Larson mentioned after his series-leading fifth victory of the season. “It actually exhibits simply how good the organizaton is.”

It was the primary Cup race after a two-week break for the Tokyo Olympics and there was no observe or qualifying.

Larson took the lead from Truex within the pits on lap 67, and the 2 had been again collectively on the entrance of the sector with 20 laps to go within the 90-lap race round seven-turn, the two.45-mile format. Kyle Busch in third was almost 10 seconds behind and simply forward of Elliott.

Larson had a lead of almost three seconds on Truex because the laps started to wind down, however Elliott continued to cost. The grandstands had been bought out and the cheers for Elliott grew as he continued his surge. He handed Truex for second on the high of the esses with eight laps to go and set his sights on his teammate simply over 5 seconds in entrance with lapped visitors forward.

Elliott’s surge fizzled over the ultimate 5 laps and Larson negotiated a gaggle of 4 lapped vehicles, overcoming a mistake within the first flip, and cruised to the end.

Elliott had flat-spotted his tires in flip 1 and dropped to thirty sixth close to the tip of the second stage earlier than rallying.

“I simply hate it. I made too many errors to win,” Elliott mentioned. “It was too late within the race to recuperate from it.”

Elliott was dealt a blow hours earlier than the beginning. As a substitute of beginning eleventh, he was relegated to the again of the sector when his No. 9 Hendrick Motorports Chevrolet failed prerace inspection and crew chief Alan Gustafson was ejected as a part of a penalty issued by NASCAR. Christopher Bell‘s No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota obtained the identical penalty.

Truex, Bell and Larson had been in a three-car breakaway early on the 50-lap remaining stage. Bell challenged Truex for the lead with Larson on lap 48 however could not make it stick and backed off.

Eight laps later, Larson took out Bell getting into the primary flip, a downhill 90-degree right-hander, dropping Bell to eighth as Elliott continued to make a robust comeback from final. Bell rallied to complete seventh.

NO LUCK

Brad Keselowski, who completed second three straight instances at The Glen almost a decade in the past, continues to be on the lookout for his first street course win and had maybe his greatest shot at a breakthrough when he landed the pole for the race. He led the primary 9 laps forward of Group Penske teammate Joey Logano earlier than his day started to unravel. He spun out on his personal heading to the competitors warning at lap 10, flat-spotted all 4 tires and was pressured to pit once more as a result of he was scuffling with rear grip. Keselowski completed thirty fifth, two laps down.

MICHAEL’S WATCHING

Six-time NBA champion Michael Jordan, companions with driver Denny Hamlin in 23XI Racing, was watching his driver from the pits. Wallace completed twenty third.

ANOTHER SELLOUT

WGI president Michael Printup mentioned earlier than the race that the grandstands had been bought out for the sixth time in seven years. NASCAR didn’t race at The Glen final yr due to the pandemic.

UP NEXT

The Cup sequence heads to the street course at Indianapolis Motor Speedway subsequent Sunday.

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