The Latest: Elliott wins at Kansas to roll into next round
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — The Latest on NASCAR’s elimination race at Kansas Speedway (all times local):
Chase Elliott has won at Kansas Speedway to take momentum into the third round of NASCAR’s playoffs.
Elliott’s victory Sunday bookended the second round of the playoffs, which he opened with a victory at Dover and closed with the win at Kansas. He was already locked into the third round of the playoffs.
The playoff field was cut by four drivers. Kyle Larson, Brad Keselowski, Alex Bowman and Ryan Blaney were eliminated from championship contention.
Larson tried to run down Elliott to get the win to extend his title hopes but wound up third behind Kyle Busch.
The drivers who advanced into the round of eight are Elliott, Aric Almirola, Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick, Martin Truex Jr., Joey Logano, Clint Bowyer and Kurt Busch.
Kevin Harvick has won the second stage of the elimination race at Kansas Speedway, and Kyle Busch and Joey Logano locked up spots in the third round of the playoffs.
Only Chase Elliott and Aric Almirola started Sunday’s race already guaranteed to race in the next round of the playoffs. Harvick moved into the round of eight in the first stage, then Busch and Logano earned enough points in the second stage to claim two of the remaining spots.
That leaves just three open spots in the final stage of Sunday’s race.
Joey Logano has won the first stage of NASCAR’s elimination race at Kansas Speedway. Logano had to get past Penske teammate Ryan Blaney in the closing laps to earn the stage victory.
Logano earned 10 points for the stage victory.
Kevin Harvick slightly tapped Blaney to take second away from Blaney and claim the critical stage points. Blaney finished the stage in third.
Kansas marks the elimination point of the second round of the playoffs. Four drivers will be cut from the 12-driver field, and only Chase Elliott and Aric Almirola had locked in berths to the third round before Sunday’s race. Harvick clinched a spot in the next round with his stage finish.
Joey Logano is on the pole and a bunch of other championship contenders are under pressure when NASCAR drops the green flag for the Cup Series playoff elimination race at Kansas Speedway.
The race Sunday is the last before the field of contenders is trimmed from 12 to eight. Chase Elliott and Aric Almirola have won the past two weeks to assure their spots in the next round.
Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch are in good shape on points, while Logano and Kurt Busch could use a good finish at Kansas. Clint Bowyer and Martin Truex Jr. are the last two above the cutoff line, and Brad Keselowski and Ryan Blaney are the first two outside.
Kyle Larson and Alex Bowman face must-win situations if they want to advance.