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Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr. divide stage wins at Michigan – NASCAR

Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr. divide stage wins at Michigan – NASCAR
12 Aug
11:43

Kyle Busch emerged from a shootout with one lap remaining in the stage to secure a Stage 2 win Sunday at Michigan International Speedway in the Consumers Energy 400.

RELATED: Race leaderboard | Stage 2 results

Busch’s Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 Toyota led just one lap in the second stage — the final one — after a late-stage restart. The outcome marked Busch’s series-leading ninth stage win this season in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.

Stage 1 winner Martin Truex Jr. held on for second place in the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 19 Toyota at the end of Stage 2. Kurt Busch, Joey Logano and Erik Jones rounded out the top five.

Pole-starter Brad Keselowski, who had led a race-high 67 laps by the end of Stage 2, survived a prolonged spin with the Team Penske No. 2 Ford on Lap 115. Keselowski avoided contact with the outside wall and continued with minimal damage.

WATCH: Keselowski goes for a spin

That caution period set up a one-lap shootout to the stage finish, which ended in a three-car crash involving Richard Childress Racing teammates Austin Dillon and Daniel Hemric with Stewart-Haas Racing’s Aric Almirola.

Sunday’s event — the 23rd of 36 points-paying races this season — is scheduled for 200 laps (400 miles) at the 2-mile track.

Finish Driver Team Points
1 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing 10
2 Martin Truex Jr. Joe Gibbs Racing 9
3 Kurt Busch Chip Ganassi Racing 8
4 Joey Logano Team Penske 7
5 Erik Jones Joe Gibbs Racing 6
6 Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports 5
7 Ryan Blaney Team Penske 4
8 William Byron Hendrick Motorsports 3
9 Clint Bowyer Stewart-Haas Racing 2
10 Paul Menard Wood Brothers Racing 1

STAGE 1

Martin Truex Jr. showed early strength, driving from the back of the pack and fending off teammate Denny Hamlin for a Stage 1 victory Sunday afternoon at Michigan International Speedway.

RELATED: Stage 1 results

Truex — making his 500th career start — led 15 of the 60 laps in the opening stage. His Joe Gibbs Racing No. 19 Toyota dropped to the rear of the field in pace laps after inspection trouble, but Truex made up the ground quickly and scooted to the front with a fuel-only pit stop. The effort marked Truex’s third stage win of the Monster Energy Series season.

Hamlin led six laps and was a close second in the opening stage of the Consumers Energy 400, his JGR No. 11 Toyota just 0.138 seconds behind at the green-checkered flag. Pole-starter Brad Keselowski in the Team Penske No. 2 Ford led the opening 39 laps and finished third in the first stage. Joey Logano and William Byron rounded out the top five.

A pair of contenders ran into early trouble. Jimmie Johnson was forced to pit road on Lap 15 after a scrape with the Turn 2 retaining wall. Two stops for repairs and tires dropped the seven-time champ’s No. 48 Chevrolet to last place, seven laps off the pace at the end of the stage.

MORE: Johnson off early pace

Kevin Harvick also made an unscheduled stop while running in second place, puncturing a tire on the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 4 Ford after running over debris. Harvick recovered to finish sixth in the stage.

Finish Driver Team Points
1 Martin Truex Jr. Joe Gibbs Racing 10
2 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing 9
3 Brad Keselowski Team Penske 8
4 Joey Logano Team Penske 7
5 William Byron Hendrick Motorsports 6
6 Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing 5
7 Ryan Blaney Team Penske 4
8 Alex Bowman Hendrick Motorsports 3
9 Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports 2
10 Aric Almirola Stewart-Haas Racing 1

Source: https://www.nascar.com/news-media/2019/08/11/stages-recap-michigan-international-speedway-consumers-energy-400/

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