Monday May 21st, 2018 6:46PM

Truex, Jr. wins Kansas, Almirola taken to local hospital

By Reid Spencer-NASCAR Wire Service
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

Martin Truex, Jr. finally ended his Kansas hex.

Truex streaked away on the final restart with two laps left in Saturday night’s Go Bowling 400 to win his first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway.

Truex led a race-high 104 of 267 laps to win for the ninth time in his career and for the second time this season. Three times in the past, Truex had led the most laps in a Kansas race—without winning.

But on this Saturday, Truex had the speed and the closing power. On successive restarts at the end of the race, which produced an event-record-tying 15 cautions, Truex jumped in front of polesitter Ryan Blaney and stayed at the head of the pack.

Brad Keselowski rallied from two laps down to finish second, followed by Kevin Harvick, Blaney and Kyle Busch. Series leader Kyle Larson came home sixth.

“It feels great,” Truex said. “It’s definitely been a thorn in our side. That’s for sure. You know for years and years even, before I was with this (Furniture Row) team, for whatever reason we always ran good here and never could close the deal.

“Proud to get these guys back in victory lane. This is our home race track – the guys from Colorado. Appreciate all the fans. We got a lot of fans from Colorado here today. I met a bunch of them before the race and hopefully they’re all psyched.”

But the race wasn’t just about elation. There was a sobering aspect, too. One lap after Truex took the lead from Blaney on a restart following the 10th caution, a lap 200 wreck stopped the action.

As Joey Logano and Danica Patrick were racing through turns 1 and 2, battling for the 12th position, Logano’s No. 22 Ford suddenly snapped to the left, turning Patrick’s No. 10 Ford hard into the outside wall.

Patrick’s car erupted in flames, and she and Logano rode the outside wall until, a moment later, Aric Almirola’s No. 43 Ford barreled into the wreck.

NASCAR stopped the race while safety workers cut the roof off Almirola’s Fusion and extricated him from the car. They placed Almirola on a backboard and rolled him to a waiting ambulance on a gurney. Almirola was airlifted to the University of Kansas Medical Center for observation.

Logano was unhurt but visibly shaken when he exited the infield care center.

“Yeah, I’m OK,” Logano said. “Just saying a lot of prayers for Aric right now. A lot of us took a hard hit. Something broke on my car. I don’t know what it was. I noticed it as I was trying to go in (to turn 1). I tried to back it off but you’re going 215 (mph) and it’s hard to check up. The car just took a big step sideways into the corner and I hooked Danica.

“You can see the right front (tire) popped,” Logano added as he watched a video replay. “I just hope everyone is OK. I hope Aric is all right. That’s the last thing you want to see, a big hit like that for anyone. It’s unfortunate for everyone. Let’s hope that Aric is all right.”

In Patrick’s case, the accident ruined her most promising run of the season and left her bemoaning her ill fortune.

“We were having a really good race and having fun out there and had a lot of speed,” Patrick said. “I kind of felt like Wonder Woman (one of her sponsors) for a little while. All I know is that I all of a sudden crashed. …

“When he said he had a failure, I can’t say it made me feel that much better in the moment. I’m just frustrated for the lack of breaks I get. It seems like every time things are going better and something happens, I get crashed or am in a crash.”

After the accident, the race was red-flagged for 27 minutes, 41 seconds for track cleanup, and Truex and Blaney subsequently traded the lead. Blaney liked his chances after beating Truex off pit road under the 13th caution on lap 245.

But Truex got a huge launch to the outside of the polesitter and quickly pulled ahead.

“I felt that we had a great short run car tonight, and I thought that was going to play right into our hands at the end,” said Blaney, who led 83 laps. “The 78 (Truex) got us on that restart somehow. I don’t know.

“I was super loose there on the last restarts, and the 78 got me spinning my tires a little bit. It kind of stinks. I think that it says a lot about this team to go out and lead some laps and go have a shot at winning races.”

Larson left Kansas with a 44-point edge over Truex in the series standings, with Keselowski 67 points back in third.

Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
Kansas Speedway – Kansas City, KS
Go Bowling 400 – May 13, 2017

1. (3) Martin Truex, Jr., Toyota, 267.
2. (17) Brad Keselowski, Ford, 267.
3. (8) Kevin Harvick, Ford, 267.
4. (1) Ryan Blaney, Ford, 267.
5. (5) Kyle Busch, Toyota, 267.
6. (9) Kyle Larson, Chevrolet, 267.
7. (15) Daniel Suarez #, Toyota, 267.
8. (12) Jamie McMurray, Chevrolet, 267.
9. (30) Clint Bowyer, Ford, 267.
10. (16) Trevor Bayne, Ford, 267.
11. (4) Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., Ford, 267.
12. (14) Matt Kenseth, Toyota, 267.
13. (35) Michael McDowell, Chevrolet, 267.
14. (22) Ty Dillon #, Chevrolet, 267.
15. (31) Kasey Kahne, Chevrolet, 267.
16. (11) Austin Dillon, Chevrolet, 267.
17. (34) David Ragan, Ford, 267.
18. (20) Chris Buescher, Chevrolet, 267.
19. (6) Kurt Busch, Ford, 267.
20. (33) Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Chevrolet, 267.
21. (36) Landon Cassill, Ford, 267.
22. (32) Erik Jones #, Toyota, 267.
23. (7) Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 267.
24. (29) Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 267.
25. (37) Reed Sorenson, Chevrolet, 267.
26. (26) Cole Whitt, Chevrolet, 266.
27. (38) * Corey LaJoie #, Toyota, 265.
28. (39) * Timmy Hill(i), Chevrolet, 259.
29. (10) Chase Elliott, Chevrolet, 258.
30. (21) A.J. Allmendinger, Chevrolet, 257.
31. (40) *Carl Long(i), Chevrolet, 256.
32. (23) Matt DiBenedetto, Ford, 243.
33. (27) Jeffrey Earnhardt, Chevrolet, 243.
34. (25) Gray Gaulding #, Toyota, 231.
35. (18) Paul Menard, Chevrolet, Accident, 202.
36. (24) Danica Patrick, Ford, Accident, 199.
37. (2) Joey Logano, Ford, Accident, 199.
38. (13) Aric Almirola, Ford, Accident, 199.
39. (28) * Derrike Cope, Toyota, Engine, 179.
40. (19) Ryan Newman, Chevrolet, Oil Pump, 154.

Average Speed of Race Winner: 117.64 mph.

Time of Race: 3 Hrs, 24 Mins, 16 Secs. Margin of Victory: 1.100 Seconds.

Caution Flags: 15 for 61 laps.

Lead Changes: 21 among 9 drivers.

Lap Leaders: R. Blaney 1-9; M. Truex Jr. 10-52; K. Harvick 53-62; Kyle Busch 63-82; M. Truex Jr. 83-99; Kyle Busch 100-138; R. Blaney 139; C. Bowyer 140-142; R. Blaney 143-163; Kurt Busch 164-166; R. Blaney 167-179; M. Truex Jr. 180-195; R. Blaney 196-198; M. Truex Jr. 199-204; R. Blaney 205-217; D. Earnhardt Jr. 218-219; T. Bayne 220; R. Blaney 221-242; M. Truex Jr. 243-245; E. Jones # 246-247; R. Blaney 248; M. Truex Jr. 249-267.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led): M. Truex Jr. 6 times for 104 laps; R. Blaney 8 times for 83 laps; Kyle Busch 2 times for 59 laps; K. Harvick 1 time for 10 laps; Kurt Busch 1 time for 3 laps; C. Bowyer 1 time for 3 laps; D. Earnhardt Jr. 1 time for 2 laps; E. Jones # 1 time for 2 laps; T. Bayne 1 time for 1 lap.

Stage #1 Top Ten: 18,78,21,42,2,48,4,11,5,41

Stage #2 Top Ten: 21,42,78,1,18,11,5,20,77,22

Top 10 In Points: 1. Kyle Larson – 475; 2. Martin Truex, Jr. – 431; 3. Brad Keselowski – 408; 4. Chase Elliott – 361; 5. Jamie McMurray – 354; 6. Kevin Harvick – 347; 7. Kyle Busch – 325; 8. Jimmie Johnson – 323; 9. Joey Logano – 320; 10. Clint Bowyer – 317.

  • Associated Categories: Homepage, Sports, NASCAR News, Monster Cup
  • Associated Tags: nascar, motorsports, Auto Racing, Stock Car, Asphalt, Motorsports Live On WDUN, Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
© Copyright 2018
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Playoff soccer: Gainesville boys fall to Chattahoochee, 2-0 in title finale
All season, the Gainesville boys soccer team has worn opponents down with rock-solid defending and lightning-quick counter-attacks...
11:59PM ( 4 minutes from now )
Truex, Jr. charges to late lead, goes on to win at Kansas
Martin Truex, Jr. charged around leader Ryan Blaney on a late race restart, and drove away to the victory Saturday night at Kansas Speedway.
11:46PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Teheran pitches Braves past Marlins in 3-1 win
Julio Teheran was in complete control. The right-hander allowed three hits over six scoreless innings and the Atlanta Braves beat the Miami Marlins 3-1 on Saturday night..
11:13PM ( 41 minutes ago )
Power takes INDYCAR Grand Prix victory at Indianapolis
Will Power used the backdrop of iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway to move past a pair of Team Penske greats in the Indy car record book.
8:40PM ( 3 hours ago )
Hamilton takes pole at Spanish GP ahead of Vettel
Lewis Hamilton takes pole at Spanish GP ahead of Sebastian Vettel
10:20AM ( 13 hours ago )
Kansas would be perfect for a Bowyer breakthrough
Clint Bowyer would love to get a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series victory at Kansas Speedway, the home track for the Emporia native and site of Saturday night’s Go Bowling 400.
6:00AM ( 17 hours ago )
NASCAR suspends crew chief for Aric Almirola for 3 races
The crew chief for Aric Almirola is the latest to earn a NASCAR suspension for a failed inspection.
4:32PM ( 3 days ago )
Stenhouse scores 1st career Cup victory with last-lap pass
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. used a strong Ford engine to blow past Kyle Busch in overtime at Talladega Superspeedway for his first NASCAR Cup victory
8:34PM ( 6 days ago )
Earnhardt flirts with pole before Stenhouse steals show
Dale Earnhardt Jr. is the favorite to win at Talladega Superspeedway and he will start 2nd in Sunday's race
6:33PM ( 1 week ago )
Monster Cup
Kansas would be perfect for a Bowyer breakthrough
Clint Bowyer would love to get a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series victory at Kansas Speedway, the home track for the Emporia native and site of Saturday night’s Go Bowling 400.
By Reid Spencer-NASCAR Wire Service
6:00AM ( 17 hours ago )
Around The Track Results and Points Standings Page
The latest Monster Energy NASCAR Cup, Xfinity and Camping World Truck Series race results.
By AccessWDUN
12:45AM ( 23 hours ago )
Stroke of luck gives Kyle Busch Kansas Truck Series win
Kyle Busch didn’t do a celebratory burnout when he won Friday night’s Toyota Tundra 250 at Kansas Speedway. He didn’t do his customary bow after notching his 47th victory in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
By Reid Spencer-NASCAR Wire Service
12:35AM ( 23 hours ago )
Ryan Blaney wins first career pole at Kansas Speedway
Improving in each round of knockout qualifying in relation to other cars, Ryan Blaney won the pole for Saturday night’s Go Bowling 400 at Kansas Speedway, claiming his first career pole by a mere .009 seconds over Joey Logano.
By Reid Spencer-NASCAR Wire Service
9:38PM ( 1 day ago )
Chase Elliott ready to get back on track at Kansas
Most drivers would be happy to be fourth in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series point standings. Chase Elliott, a 21-year-old rising star, is not one of those drivers.
By NASCAR Wire Service
6:00AM ( 1 day ago )