Kevin Harvick won Sunday’s Cup playoff race at Texas Motor Speedway in overtime to claim his series-leading eighth victory of the year.
Harvick easily cleared Ryan Blaney on the restart and went unchallenged to the finish. He locked himself into the championship four at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
The Stewart-Haas Racing driver led 177 laps and swept every stage on the way to his first win of the playoffs. It’s his second win in three races at Texas after not having won at the 1.5-mile track prior to last fall.
“Just really, really proud of everybody at Stewart-Haas Racing for these cars we’ve had, really for five years now,” Harvick told NBCSN. “The expectations are to win. It’s like I told you guys before the race, we don’t race for points, we race for wins. We don’t come here to count our fingers and toes to figure out how to win. We want to earn it. Today we earned our way in.”
The victory gives Harvick a playoff win in seven consecutive seasons.
The top five was completed by Blaney, Joey Logano, Erik Jones and Kyle Larson.
The overtime finish was set up by a wreck that involved Daniel Suarez, Joey Gase and AJ Allmendinger.
STAGE 1 WINNER: Kevin Harvick
STAGE 2 WINNER: Kevin Harvick
WHO HAD A GOOD DAY: Joey Logano led 54 laps and earned his sixth straight top 10 … Erik Jones finished fourth for the third time at Texas … Martin Truex Jr. rebounded after starting from the rear for an engine change, an unscheduled pit stop for a vibration and a pit penalty to finish ninth. It’s his first top 10 this year that wasn’t in the top five.
WHO HAD A BAD DAY: Denny Hamlin and Clint Bowyer placed 30th and 26th respectively after Bowyer got loose and made contact with Hamlin on Lap 1 in Turn 2. They went multiple laps down to repair damage on pit road … William Byron, who started from the rear for an inspection failure, finished 16th after he got into the back of Jimmie Johnson on Lap 97 and spun … Kyle Busch was unable to bounce back from an unscheduled pit stop for a wheel vibration in Stage 2 and placed 17th.
NOTABLE: Kevin Harvick is now tied with Bobby Allison for third all-time for wins in a season for a driver 40 or more years old.
QUOTE OF THE RACE NO. 1: “When (Miami) comes around, if I’m not in it, he’ll know it.” – Aric Almirola expressing his displeasure to NBCSN on how he was raced by Joey Logano.
QUOTE OF THE RACE NO. 2: “I don’t know what genius decided to pave this place or take the banking out of (Turns) 1 and 2. Not a good move for the entertainment factor, in my opinion.” – Chase Elliott after he was asked about the difficulty to pass.
WHAT’S NEXT: Can-Am 500 at ISM Raceway at 2:30 p.m. ET on Nov. 11 on NBC
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