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Kyle Larson holds off Chase Elliott to win Firekeepers Casino 400
Noah Trister, AP Sports Writer
7:44 PM, Jun 18, 2017
BROOKLYN, Mich. (AP) -- Kyle Larson took control on a restart with five laps remaining and raced to his second NASCAR Cup Series victory of the season, holding off Chase Elliott on Sunday at Michigan International Speedway.
It was the third Cup win of Larson's career -- and second in a row at Michigan. Larson and Elliott also finished 1-2 at MIS in August. Elliott was second in both Michigan races last year, and again this time.
Joey Logano finished third.
Martin Truex Jr. won the first two stages of the race, but finished sixth, ceding the points lead to Larson. Truex has 10 stage victories this year.
Larson also was first in qualifying in his No. 42 Chevrolet.
Truex and Larson were 1-2 in the points standings coming into the race, and Truex was second to Larson in qualifying. Their dominance carried over to the race Sunday, at least at the start. They were the only drivers to lead during the first half of the 200-lap, 400-mile race.
There were three cautions toward the end. The first was for debris, and Larson beat Kyle Busch on the inside for the lead on the restart with 15 laps to go.
Then Clint Bowyer went into the wall, bringing out another caution flag. Larson was first off that restart too, only to be slowed by another caution after a multicar incident on the backstretch that included Danica Patrick being knocked off the track and into the wall.
Finally, with five laps remaining, the race restarted, and Larson took the lead on the outside. He won by 0.993 seconds.
Elliott finished second to Logano last June at Michigan and second to Larson in August. Those three were at the top Sunday.
Denny Hamlin, who won Saturday's Xfinity race, was fourth, followed by Jamie McMurray and Truex. Busch ended up seventh, followed by Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jimmie Johnson, who started at the back after going to his backup car, finished 10th.
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