Kevin Harvick dominated Sunday’s Consumers Energy 400 at Michigan International Speedway to score his seventh Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series win of the season.
Harvick led 108 of the day’s 200 laps to win for the 44th time in the Cup Series and is now tied with Bill Elliott for 17th on the all-time win list.
“The most important thing is winning races right now and getting all the points that you can get to position yourself well to get to Homestead,” Harvick said. “That’s what we’ve been trying to do all year is win races.
“That was our only goal – we didn’t want to learn anything, we don’t want to do anything different, we just want to go out and we want to win.”
Harvick swept the day winning the first two stages and then taking the checkered flag. The Stewart-Haas Racing driver also swept Las Vegas and Dover earlier this season.
Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch and Austin Dillon, who suffered a flat tire coming to the final lap, followed Harvick across the finish line. Ryan Blaney rounded out the top five.
Kurt Busch, Aric Almirola, Denny Hamlin, Chase Elliott and Joey Logano completed the first 10 finishers.
The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series now moves to Bristol Motor Speedway this Saturday night.
How Harvick Won: Domination. Harvick did what he’s done several times before on Sunday by pacing the field for more than half the race and driving away to Victory Lane. Once the final cycle of green flag fuel stops ended and Harvick got back to the top spot he was unchallenged on his way to taking checkered flag number seven of the season.
Who Had a Good Day: Keselowski tied his best finish of the season when he came home second at Atlanta in the second race of the year…Kyle Busch has finished in the top three in each of the last four races (Read More)…Daytona 500 winner Austin Dillon notched only his second top five of the year (Read More).
Who Had a Bad Day: Ty Dillon severely damaged his car when he ran over what appeared to be a back-up battery on the track and finished 38th…Martin Truex Jr. finished 14th and fell two laps back at one point when he ran out of fuel just before the end of Stage 2 and then was penalized for coming in while the pits were closed…Erik Jones managed a 13th-place finish after spinning two times on Sunday.
What Else Happened: Early on “The Big Three” of Harvick, Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. was pacing the field. While Busch tried to keep pace with Harvick, Truex Jr. had some issues that took him out of contention. Pit strategy was the only way anyone was going to make up ground on the dominating Harvick and while there were a few two tire stop calls, nothing was going to derail the SHR driver from scoring his personal best seventh win of the season.
Quotable: “(Blank) happens. We’ve got a good race car. I’ll do what I can with it. It won’t be easy,” crew chief Cole Pearn to Martin Truex Jr. after running out of fuel before the end of Stage 2.
Notables: Harvick scored the 48th win for Stewart-Haas Racing…Blaney scored only his second top-five in the last 16 races…Elliott has finished in the top 10 in all six of his career Michigan Cup starts.