Kevin Harvick won the Coca-Cola 600 from Charlotte Motor Speedway. Annually run on the Sunday before Memorial Day the Coca-Cola 600 is the longest race on the NASCAR schedule. While Harvick winning may not have been a surprise, the events that lead up to it certainly were.
Denny Hamlin set a track record to sit on the pole. Hamlin would lead the opening lap of the race but soon gave way to teammate Matt Kenseth and Kasey Kahne.
A fiber rope from FOX’s overhead camera snapped during Sunday’s running of the Coca-Cola 600. The unusual event caused extensive damage to the No. 18 car of Kyle Busch who had been leading the race. Marcos Ambrose also ran over the rope and managed to wad it up underneath his car.
While under Ambrose’s car the rope severed a brake line. Other cars who received damage including Denny Hamlin and Mark Martin. NASCAR would red flag the race and give crews 15 minutes to make repairs. Ten fans were injured, three of which were taken offsite for further evaluation.
When racing resumed it was Kenseth’s turn to lead the field. On lap 256 Busch began to fade back and dropped out of the race shortly after with an engine failure. Dale Earnhardt Jr would begin smoking on lap 259 while Greg Biffle, Travis Kvapil and Dave Blaney all damaged their cars during the incident.
While the majority of the field pitted, Kenseth stayed out and was passed by Kahne on lap 274. With older tires and less gas Kenseth was forced to pit before everyone else which forced others onto pit road. A caution came out on lap 304 trapping Kenseth, Jeff Gordon and others a lap down. Many of those drivers would take the wave around to get back on the lead lap.
As Kurt Busch led on lap 327 Mark Martin made contact with Aric Almirola damaging both drivers car and the cars of Jeff Gordon and Bobby Labonte and brought out a red flag. Busch would be forced to pit road for a battery change and after the restart a lose Jimmie Johnson began to spin off turn four. Juan Pablo Montoya would tap Kenseth while the cars of Tony Stewart and Paul Menard also received damage.
Kahne would regain the lead on lap 340bit a caution with 14 to go for debris would spice up the finish. While Kahne stayed out Harvick and the rest of the field came down pit road. When the race restarted Harvick passed Kahne almost immediately and pulled away from the field.
|9||Martin Truex Jr.||56||Toyota||400||0|
|14||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||17||Ford||398||0|
|18||Juan Pablo Montoya||42||Chevrolet||397||0|
|39||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||88||Chevrolet||256||0|