A first Las Vegas win for Kurt Busch in the South Point 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway advances him to the Round of 8 NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs.
With the opening round of the 2020 Cup Series Playoffs in the books, the show moves out west for a 400-mile race in Las Vegas. The playoff standings are extremely close coming into the race with a few surprising drivers already fighting to move on. Teams look forward to this event as an opportunity to gain points or even win a race before everyone heads to Talladega Superspeedway.
The First Stage
Kevin Harvick wins the pole and paces the field to the green flag, but Chase Elliott charges to the early lead from third place. Elliott commanded the field through the competition caution. Kyle Busch wins the race off pit road after everyone pits for early adjustments. Kyle Busch is quickly passed up after Denny Hamlin makes a pass on the inside. The remainder of the stage runs caution free with Denny Hamlin grabbing the stage win.
The Second Stage
On the restart to open the second stage, Joey Logano and Kyle Busch fight for the lead down the backstretch. Denny Hamlin forces three-wide action as Busch and Logano connect. Hamlin takes over the race lead while Logano is forced to pit due to a major tire rub.
Shortly after, Chase Elliott makes the pass for the lead on lap 92. The field begins to cycle through green flag stops as the stage runs caution-free once again.
Chase Elliott returns to the lead after a great stop from his team. Chase Elliott then continues to pave the way and win he second stage.
The Third Stage
Denny Hamlin wins the race off pit road to lead the field to the green flag and begin the final stage of the race. Thirty laps into the final stage, a debris caution comes out bringing the field together one more time.
Hamlin continues to lead as the race goes on another big green flag run. The field begins to come down pit road on lap 231. Alex Bowman has a better stop than Hamlin and Bowman and cycles back into the lead. However, a caution comes out before everyone makes their pit stops. This puts Kurt Busch in the lead with thirty laps remaining.
Busch takes control of the race, but another late caution comes out after William Byron connects with the wall. This put the race into overtime with Kurt Busch still at the helm. Busch has a great jump in the outside line to solidify a decent lead coming to the white flag. He will not be denied and wins at his hometown racetrack at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
The perfect opportunity fell into Kurt Busch’s lap at the perfect time, and he took advantage of it. Coming down the stretch, he is a solid driver who can make some noise in the next round of the playoffs.
Currently, Kyle Busch, Clint Bowyer, Aric Almirola, and Austin Dillon sit below the cutline for the following round of the playoffs. Kyle Busch is extremely close to the final spot being nine points behind. For the other three, it will take some great racing to push the envelope and advance on.
With a race at Talladega and the Charlotte Roval, it is exciting to see what these teams do to find victory lane and shake up the playoffs standings.