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Blaney holds off Harvick for first career win

12 iunie 2017 01:09

After 67 career NASCAR Cup Series races, Ryan Blaney finally claimed victory. 

Blaney held off Kevin Harvick in Sunday's Pocono 400 on the final lap for his first career win, a race he led only the 10 remaining laps at Pocono Raceway. 

Kasey Kahne brought out the second caution of the day with 19 laps remaining, setting up an all-important pit stop for a sprint to the finish.

With the fastest car all day, Kyle Busch stayed out while contenders behind him took tires and fuel. Brad Keselowski, who pitted just before the caution, also did not pit. 

Busch attempted to block Blaney as the laps winded down, but the Wood Brothers Racing driver got around him with nine laps to go.

With one lap remaining, Harvick got within 0.14 seconds of Blaney, but the 23-year-old did not make a mistake as he put the iconic number 21 car back in victory lane for the 99th time in team history. 

Harvick finished second followed by Erik Jones, Kurt Busch and Brad Keselowski. 

The red flag was shown at Pocono for just over 20 minutes on Lap 97 after a pair of wrecks by Jimmie Johnson and Jamie McMurray.

Brake issues on both cars led to wrecks on Turn 1, with Johnson colliding with the wall at over 125 mph and McMurray's engulfed in flames.

Both drivers were shaken but treated and released from the infield care centre. 

Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s disappointing final season continued as transmission issues from Friday resurfaced just after the beginning of stage two.

Earnhardt blew the motor after attempting to shift into fourth gear but instead went into second. He now has six finishes of 30th or worse in 14 races this season but will hope for better luck next weekend at Michigan. 

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