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Sunday, March 3, 2024

Blaney caps Penske’s large weekend with Coke 600 win

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Coming someday after Josef Newgarden received the Indianapolis 500 for Group Penske, Blaney received out in a race delayed someday by rain after beating William Byron’s Hendrick Chevrolet at a restart with 20 laps to go.

Blaney and Byron had traded the lead a number of instances through the race, with Byron having the added benefit of the primary pit stall which repeatedly gave him the lead off pit street.

The win is Blaney’s first in a points-paying race since his August 2021 victory at Daytona, though he did win final yr’s non-points All-Star Race at Texas Motor Speedway.

“It is so cool simply to be part of it, not to mention win it,” Blaney stated after celebrating with followers within the grandstands, very similar to Newgarden did on Sunday.

Requested what the consequence meant given his final victory was almost two years in the past, Blaney added: “You begin to get to really feel like you may’t win anymore when you do not win shortly. It type of will get exhausting.

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“So, simply tremendous grateful to the No. 12 guys for believing in me. Thanks (followers) for sticking round. Actually recognize it.”

Byron, who had been awarded pole after the rain additionally induced Saturday’s qualifying session to be washed out, had edged Christopher Bell to assert the Stage 1 win in a photograph end.

The second stage was disrupted by gentle rain that induced a 31-minute delay in proceedings. An accident involving Chase Elliott and Denny Hamlin exiting Flip 4 on lap 186, Elliott squeezed into the wall earlier than bouncing into Hamlin and turning the Toyota into the wall, then ended the race early for each drivers. 

William Byron, Hendrick Motorsports, Liberty College Patriotic Chevrolet Camaro and Ryan Blaney, Group Penske, BodyArmor Cherry Lime Ford Mustang

Picture by: Nigel Kinrade / NKP / Motorsport Images

Chris Buescher had taken the Stage 2 spoils over Kevin Harvick, with Blaney fifth, however the Penske driver moved to the entrance and received Stage 3 after passing Byron then holding off Tyler Reddick. 

Halfway via Stage 4, top-five contenders Reddick and Harvick exiting Flip 4 to ship the race again beneath warning for the thirteenth time and arrange a late restart with 38 laps remaining. Zane Smith, making simply his sixth profession Cup begin, stayed out and led the way in which adopted by Byron and Kyle Larson.

An incident involving Larson, Ty Gibbs, Joey Logano and Bell exiting Flip 2 then arrange the ultimate restart with 20 laps remaining. Blaney took command and by no means relinquished the result in the flag.

Martin Truex Jr. completed third, Bubba Wallace rallied to complete fourth and his 23XI Racing teammate Tyler Reddick rounded out the highest 5.

Finishing the top-10 have been Kyle Busch, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Buescher, Austin Dillon and Smith.

NASCAR Cup Charlotte race outcomes (400 laps)

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