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Kyle Larson rallies from lap down to break through for truck victory at Eldora Speedway

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ROSSBURG, Ohio – Rallying from a penalty that put him a lap down, Kyle Larson roared to victory Wednesday night in the Aspen Dental Eldora Dirt Derby.

It was the Chip Ganassi Racing driver’s first victory in three attempts at the Camping World Truck Series race held at the half-mile oval, the only dirt race in a NASCAR national series.

In his previous two tries at Eldora in this event, Larson had been passed by the winner on the race’s final lead change.

“It means a lot,” Larson told FS1 in victory lane. “Especially losing the way I did the two years I didn’t.”

Larson was penalized a lap by NASCAR, which ruled he brought out an intentional caution with a lazy spin after catching a flat tire while leading on Lap 51.

Christopher Bell, who won in 2015, finished second.

“Overall good day for us,” Bell said. “Larson’s been here a long time trying. It’s an honor to be here.”

It was the second career win in 11 truck starts for Larson, who also won at Rockingham in 2013.

HOW LARSON WON: Larson took the lead on a restart with 30 laps remaining and fended off charges by Bell and Bobby Pierce, the top two finishers in last year’s race.

WHO ELSE HAD A GOOD RACE: After crashing in the third heat race, Rico Abreu rebounded to finish second in the last chance qualifier and then roared from 27th to third in the main event. … Pierce, the runner-up last year, put on a show in leading more than 100 laps and his final pass of Larson – briefly taking first – might have been the most impressive. Unfortunately, Pierce bounced off the wall and was knocked out of the race by a flat tire.

WHO HAD A BAD RACE: Timothy Peters was involved in a multitruck crash and finished 27th, dropping a spot in the standings. … John Hunter Nemechek struggled to a 24th and fell two positions in the points. .. Rookie sensation William Byron had a tough race in his dirt debut, crashing twice, but salvaged a 14th.

QUOTE OF THE NIGHT: “He’s by far the most talented guy I’ve ever seen in my life. Growing up watching him race, and I was a step behind him, but just seeing what he could do. He could hop in cars for the first time and just be able to win off the bat. He’s by far the most talented guy I’ve ever seen. He can just run so hard and on the edge for so long and do it so effortlessly. His 100 percent is everyone else’s 150 percent. ” – Christopher Bell on Kyle Larson

WHAT’S NEXT: The series will return Saturday, July 30 at Pocono Raceway (green flag is 1:21 p.m. ET).

NASCAR Power Rankings: Kevin Harvick still No. 1 after quiet Vegas

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Kevin Harvick didn’t have a flashy night Sunday in Las Vegas, but it didn’t keep him from retaining the No. 1 spot in this week’s NASCAR Power Rankings.

After winning the Bristol night race, Harvick finished in the top 10 in the first two stages in Vegas before placing 10th at race’s end.

Kurt Busch’s win at his home track vaulted him into the top 10 as 12 drivers received votes.

More: Playoff standings after Las Vegas

Here is this week’s NASCAR Power Rankings:

1. Kevin Harvick (Last week No. 1): In the last eight races he’s won three times and finished outside the top 10 only twice.

2. Martin Truex Jr. (Last week No. 5): Placed fourth for his 11th top-five finish in the last 14 races.

3. Alex Bowman (Last week unranked): Finished fifth for his second top five and fifth top-10 finish in the last six races.

4. Denny Hamlin (Last week unranked): Left Vegas with a third-place finish to snap a three-race streak of finishing outside the top 10.

5. Kurt Busch (Last week unranked): Snapped a 46-race winless streak with his victory and advanced to the Round of 8.

6. Kyle Busch (Last week No. 3): Finished sixth after a “dismal” night. He has four consecutive top 10s.

7. Brad Keselowski (Last week No. 5): Finished 13th to give him two finishes outside the top 10 since he won at Richmond.

8. Chase Briscoe (Last week unranked): Opened the Xfinity playoffs with his second consecutive win.

8. Chase Elliott (Last week No. 2): Led 73 laps, but had to settle for a 22nd-place finish in Vegas.

8. Joey Logano (Last week No. 3): Finished 14th for his second straight finish outside the top 10.

Also receiving votes: Erik Jones and Chris Buescher.

NASCAR announces changes to Kansas playoff weekend

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Citing “programming changes,” NASCAR announced shifts in the race dates and start times for its visit next month to Kansas Speedway.

The Xfinity, ARCA and Truck Series races have been shifted, while the Cup race remains at 2:30 p.m. ET Sunday, Oct. 18.

The biggest move is the Truck Series race shifting from Friday night to Saturday afternoon.

Here are the changes.

Friday, Oct. 16, 8:30 p.m. ETARCA Menards Series on FS1 or FS2; network TBD at a later date (previously at 10 p.m. ET)

Saturday, Oct. 17, 4 p.m. ETTruck Series on FOX (previously Friday, Oct. 16 at 7 p.m. ET on FS1)

Saturday, Oct. 17, 7 p.m. ET Xfinity on NBCSN (previously 3 p.m. ET on NBCSN)

 

Xfinity Series playoff standings after Las Vegas

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Chase Briscoe opened the Xfinity Series playoffs by earning his second consecutive win.

His victory Saturday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway gives him 57 playoff points and an automatic spot in the Round of 8.

Harrison Burton holds the final transfer spot. He has a two-point advantage over Ross Chastain.

Behind Chastain below the cutline are Michael Annett (-10 points), Riley Herbst (-14) and Brandon Brown (-20).

Below is the full Xfinity Series playoff standings going into Saturday’s race at Talladega (4:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN).

Drivers in red are below the cutline to advance. Drivers in yellow are in the remaining playoff spots.

Xfinity Series playoff standings

Cup playoff standings after Las Vegas

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Kurt Busch flipped the script on the Cup playoff standings with his win Sunday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

He entered the Round of 12 as the last driver in the playoff standings, but is the first driver to clinch a spot in the Round of 8.

Replacing Busch in the bottom spot of the playoff standings is Austin Dillon. He is 32 points behind Alex Bowman, who holds the final cutoff spot.

Behind Bowman is Kyle Busch (-9 points), Clint Bowyer (-20), Aric Almirola (-27) and Dillon.

“Obviously, the 1 car (Kurt Busch) was not a car that we needed to win a race,” Clint Bowyer said after Sunday’s race. “It’s been a hell of a battle back there with cars that are kind of in the same wheelhouse as far as points-wise. (Kurt Busch) winning changes that landscape quite a bit, but we’re only 20 points out.”

Here is the full playoff standings entering Sunday’s playoff race at Talladega Superspeedway (2 p.m. ET on NBC).

Drivers in red are below the cutline to advance to the Round of 8. Drivers in yellow hold the remaining available playoff spots.

Cup playoff standings