Harvick seeking first win at Pocono

Harvick seeking first win at Pocono

Martin Truex Jr. pulled away off a restart with seven laps left to win the NASCAR Cup race at Pocono Raceway on Sunday and thrust himself back into the championship picture.

The 2015 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion lost this race past year when he chose to start on older tires late in the race and was eventually beat by Ryan Blaney who won earned his first career victory on fresher tires.

"Every single weekend this year, I've felt like we can show up and win", Truex said. His Pocono performance was a reminder of just how good the 78 team can and more than likely will be for the rest of the campaign.

Denny Hamlin spun the No. 11 Toyota and slammed into the inside wall late in the race and failed to finish a race for the second time this season.

Consider this. In the June, 2017 MI race, Larson won, Elliott (then 20-years old), finished second, Joey Logano (then 26) was third and Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

A familiar sight indeed.

Keselowski couldn't hang on to the lead long, with Harvick and then Busch soon getting past him. Martin Truex Jr held off Kyle Larson and Kyle Busch to take the checkered flag.

"I think a lot of times when you have a good run at a racetrack, especially with the way the MI dates are - they are so close together - you could think you could just go back with the same thing and run well". We actually weren't that fast the last one we had, but we were able to have some good restarts at the end. Last year: Ryan Blaney, starting fourth, won Pocono's spring race.

He led 24 of the first 26 laps and the final 40 to win for the 92nd time in Xfinity to add to his series record.

Larson isn't just the defending race victor, he has actually won three straight at MI, including this week's race from the pole position last June.

With a long road ahead to November and the final race at Homestead, Fla., it's pretty likely that Busch, Harvick and Truex will be in the circuit's version of the Final Four. "We're going to drink it all!"

A year after he made his Cup debut at Pocono, Darrell Wallace Jr. was the first vehicle to the garage on Sunday.

Hendrick Motorsports may have turned a corner with top-10 runs at Pocono Raceway last week from Jimmie Johnson and Chase Elliott, but they still have some ground to make up according to NASCAR America analysts Parker Kligerman and Landon Cassill.

A stranglehold on the playoff race by a couple of guys will make it hard for the series to remain relevant in the minds of sports fans, especially come September when the NFL and NCAA football seasons kick off. Larson is winless this season.

"Obviously those guys, the 4 and the 18, have done an unbelievable job all year, and we've been close for sure, and today was a great step in the right direction and let us know that we were kind of working the right way".

This one wasn't much more lively, considering there wasn't a caution for contact over the first 124 laps.

Harvick and Truex pitted from the lead on Lap 24, almost halfway through the stage.

They call Harvick "The Closer", and this race is why. 1 time for 4 laps; J. Johnson 1 time for 2 laps.