Atlanta Motor Speedway results from February 25, 2018 featuring the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
Today, the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series takes to Atlanta Motor Speedway. The perfectly weathered 1.54-mile pavement oval was scheduled to be re-paved after last years race. It wasn’t.
Track officials listened to the drivers and has elected to patch it. Now, we have another year of the slick version of the high speed and ultra abrasive Hampton, GA track.
View full Atlanta results for the NASCAR Cup Series below.
Ryan Newman and Kyle Busch will lead the field to the green flag. 75 laps in stage 1, 75 in stage 2 and 175 in stage 3 will complete the 325 lap event.
Green, they’re even at the line. Newman lifts early and gives the entry to Busch. However, Newman is back on the gas! He makes it all up on the exit. Newman powers right on by via the outside lane.
Lap 2, Newman runs to an early gap of .80 second over Kyle Busch. This is an old surface and tires are important. That might come back to bite him but there’s a competition caution at lap 30.
“Harvick’s chewing everybody up on the bottom now,” the crew radios to Kyle Busch.
Lap 21, Harvick is clicking around the bottom. Race leader Kyle Busch is running the third lane. Harvick drives right on by, new leader.
Lap 30, the caution is out, competition caution. Martin Truex Jr charged from 35th to 6th in that brief run. Austin Dillon also started at the back he’s up to 14th. The cars hit the pit lane. Harvick is first in and first off with a 14.9 second pit stop. Under the new rules, I think that’s the fastest stop of the year, the first in the 14 second bracket.
Green, Harvick gets the jump on Harvick. Kyle Busch falls from 2nd to 7th as he spun his tires on that restart. The outside line does not go in Atlanta.
5 to go in stage 1, Harvick leads Clint Bowyer by 4 seconds. He just place Kasey Kahne a lap behind the leaders.
Trouble! Newman is in the wall. No caution, Newman hits the pit lane. It might have been a flat tire.
Kevin Harvick wins stage 1 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. 19 cars are on the lead lap.
Stage 1 Results: 1. Kevin Harvick; 2. Clint Bowyer; 3. Brad Keselowski; 4. Martin Treux Jr; 5. Aric Almirola; 6. Kyle Busch; 7. Kyle Larson; 8. Kurt Busch; 9. Denny Hamlin; 10. Joey Logano;
The field hits pit lane. Harvick is first to the lane, 18 second stop for him, they were 4 seconds slower than the last stop with right front issues. Brad Keselowski and Clint Bowyer lead them out of the pits. Kevin Harvick falls to 6th.
Harvick returns to the pit lane! NASCAR mandated pit guns for 2018. The first one has broken! Harvick returns to the pit lane for a tightening of both front rims with a new gun.
Erik Jones ran over an air hose. Alex Bowman was too fast entering.
Green, Brad Keselowski leads into turn 1. Truex follows him through to 2nd. Bowyer has fallen to 5th. Kyle Busch has a broken track bar adjuster. The crew plans to take the rear window out and fix it on the next stop.
Lap 90, the stage 1 winner Kevin Harvick is up to 15th after starting at the tail. At the front, Kurt Busch swings around the outside of Keselowski to take the lead.
Lap 111, Kevin Harvick is up to 3rd. Keselowski is running Kurt Busch back down but Harvick is catching the both of them. Kurt Busch drops to the bottom to take the lane away from Keselowski.
Lap 115, 3 wide for the lead! Kurt Busch moved up to the middle for Kasey Kahne who had just pitted. Harvick quickly filled that same hole. Harvick to the lead. Green flag pit stops are underway.
Lp 128, Harvick to the pits. Kurt Busch and others follow. Kyle Busch cycles to the lead. Tires have fallen off by 3 seconds. Kyle Busch is now the only car on the lead lap, he remains on the track.
Lap 131, Kyle Busch hits the pit lane. Harvick cycles back to the lead.
Lap 159, Jimmie Johnson has looped it off turn 2. The caution is out. The right front tire came apart on his trip back to pit lane. Johnson was running 19th, one lap down to the leaders.
It’s going to be a shootout for the stage 2 win. The field hits the pits. Keselowski wins the race off pit lane, Harvick 2nd. Truex lost a whole bunch of positions. It was another malfunction of the air gun, that’s the second time this race.
Green, Keseowski is gone. Harvick doesn’t move at all on the outside. He falls to 5-6th before turn 1. Truex is at the back, he’s aggressively fighting to get some stage points, he’s currently in 15th but 3 wide and heading to the front.
Brad Keselowski wins stage 2 at Atlanta Motor Speedway!
Stage 2 Results: 1. Brad Keselowski; 2. Kurt Busch; 3. Kyle Busch; 4. Joey Logano; 5. Kevin Harvick; 6. Denny Hamlin; 7. Kyle Larson; 8. Aric Almirola; 9. Clint Bowyer; 10. Daniel Suarez;
The field returns to pit lane. Kurt Busch wins the race off the lane. Kyle Busch to 2nd. Keselowski falls to 3rd. Alex Bowman has pit gun issues, that’s the third one of the day.
Green on the final stage, Logano got the best outside restart of anyone all day. However, Kurt Busch stills leads them into turn 1 by a car length.
129 to go, Kurt Busch, Brad Keselowski and Kevin Harvick are nose to tail for the lead. Kurt Busch selects the highside in turn 1. Keselowski to the bottom, he’s nearly clear. Not quite, Busch powers by on the outside down the back straight.
The rain is coming! This could be the race for the win.
Keselowski misses the bottom in turn 3. He gathers it up and makes another run. This time, he completes the pass. Keselowski leads and rain drops are here! We remain green.
120 to go, Kevin Harvick has moved to 2nd and he’s approaching the rear bumper of Keselowski. They both run the bottom.
116 to go, Keseowski is getting held up by the lap car of McDowell. Keselowski has to move up a lane. Harvick fills the bottom and they run even into turn 1. Now, the lap car is in the way of Harvick. Keselowski takes the lappers 3 wide, through the middle. He holds the lead.
113 to go, Harvick hits the pit lane. Lap 214, Keselowski to the pits the lap after Harvick.
109 to go, Harvick runs 3rd, two seconds ahead of Keselowski who pitted 1 lap later. Hamlin leads with Logano in 2nd. Those two are praying to the rain gods. Harvick is 20+ seconds behind Hamlin.
100 to go, Hamlin and Logano hit the pit lane. Harvick cycles back to the lead. Keselowski tails the leader by 3.5 seconds.
75 to go, Harvick leads Keselowski by nearly 10 seconds. Denny Hamlin is up to 9th. Logano runs 10th. They are flying through the field. They’ll make 1 less pit stop than the rest of the field. Meanwhile, green flag pit stops have begun for everyone else on the regular cycle. 73 to go, Keselowski pits. 72 to go, Harvick pits. Hamlin cycles to the lead, Harvick runs 4th.
60 to go, Harvick has erased the delta to Hamlin. With fresher tires, Harvick drives right on by. Chase Elliott hits the pit lane, he was running 5th. He’s been on a pit cycle all to his own.
50 to go, Hamlin and Logano hit the pits for the final time.
38 to go, Harvick to the pits. Keselowski and Busch are in with him. Hamlin cycles back to the lead. But, Hamlin only leads by 1 second.
Which strategy will win?!
35 to go, Allmendinger has a flat, no caution. Harvick cruises around Hamlin, no contest.
28 to go, Harvick leads Hamlin by 3.5 seconds. The caution is out! Trevor Bayne is up in smoke down the backstretch. Bubba Wallace has big front end damage! Ricky Stenhouse has huge rear end damage. Wallace run through the smoke on the back. The radio message was, “Check up.” But, Wallace didn’t know which direction to go.
The field hits the pits. Harvick and Keselowski has identical 14.8 second pit stops. Havrick leads at pit exit.
Green, 21 laps remain. Harvick leads into turn 1. They’re 4 wide for 5th. Keselowski surfaces in 2nd.
10 to go, Harvick leads Keselowski by 1.7 seconds.
The drivers are still puzzled by his line. Kevin Harvick wins at Atlanta Motor Speedway!
View full NASCAR results from Atlanta Motor Speedway below.
Atlanta Race Results
February 25, 2018
NASCAR Cup Series
Pos | Driver
1. Kevin Harvick
2. Brad Keselowski
3. Clint Bowyer
4. Denny Hamlin
5. Martin Truex Jr
6. Joey Logano
7. Kyle Busch
8. Kurt Busch
9. Kyle Larson
10. Chase Elliott
11. Erik Jones
12. Ryan Blaney
13. Aric Almirola
14. Austin Dillon
15. Daniel Suarez
16. Ricky Stenhouse Jr
17. Paul Menard
18. William Byron
19. Jamie McMurray
20. Alex Bowman
21. Kasey Kahne
22. Ryan Newman
23. David Ragan
24. Michael McDowell
25. Chris Buescher
26. Ty Dillon
27. Jimmie Johnson
28. Cole Whitt
29. AJ Allmendinger
30. Ross Chastain
31. Matt DiBenedetto
32. Darrell Wallace Jr
33. Harrison Rhodes
34. Jeffrey Earnhardt
35. Trevor Bayne
36. Gray Gaulding Jr
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