Kyle Larson dominates Nashville for fourth straight win

A new track didn’t change the outcome in the NASCAR Cup Series of late as Kyle Larson won the inaugural race at Nashville (Tenn.) Superspeedway.

Kyle Larson, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro Valvoline celebrates his win
Kyle Larson, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro Valvoline celebrates his win
Kyle Larson, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro Valvoline celebrates his win
Race winner Kyle Larson, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro Valvoline

Larson saved enough fuel to make it to the end as Sunday’s Ally 400 ended with a 68-lap green-flag run – the longest of the race.

Larson took the checkered flag 4.335 seconds ahead of Ross Chastain, who reached the runner-up spot in the final laps.

“Awesome job. Four in a row. Awesome,” Larson said over his team radio at the finish. “So, so thankful.”

The win is Larson’s fourth of the season and fourth victory in a row counting his win in last weekend’s non-points All-Star Race. He led 264 of the 300 laps.

"It was a great day. We never really had to run behind people, so I don't know," Larson said. "If one of my teammates got out front again, it would have been hard to pass them. 

This Chevrolet was really good. It could cut the corner, cut the middle of the corner really well. 

"Our pit crew did an awesome job again. That No. 1 pit stall helps a bunch, too. This crowd is awesome."

Larson was asked about his victory burnout, which he from one end of the frontstretch grandstands to the other.

"I was going to do something here. I looked down there, 'Man, there's a lot of fans down there, too. I need to go to the end,' he said. "We had enough rubber and enough fuel left over to do a good burnout at the end."

It’s also the 10th points victory of his Cup career.

Larson’s Hendrick Motorsports teammate, William Byron, finished third, pole-winner Aric Almirola was fourth and Kevin Harvick ended up fifth despite running out of fuel on the final lap.

Completing the top-10 were Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Daniel Suarez, Kurt Busch, Christopher Bell and Joey Logano. Kurt Busch also ran out of fuel on the final lap.

Post-Race Update: Chase Elliott, who finished 13th, has been disqualified after four loose lug nuts were found on the No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet.

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Stage 3

Following the break between Stages 2 and 3, several lead-lap cars pit but Larson stayed out and remained in the lead on the restart on Lap 191.

On Lap 197, Ryan Preece suffered a brake rotor failure and spun which brought out the ninth caution of the race.

A handful of cars pit but Larson remained on the track and in the lead when the race returned to green on Lap 203. He was followed by Byron, Denny Hamlin and Chase Elliott.

Byron and Larson slid up together in Turn 1 but Byron was able to save it and Larson cleared for the lead.

 

On Lap 218, Bubba Wallace spun off Turn 2 after contact with Michael McDowell and slid through the infield grass.

Most of the lead-lap cars pit but Chastain remained on the track and inherited the lead. Larson was the first off pit road followed by Harvick.

On the restart on Lap 223, Chastain was followed by Larson, Harvick and Byron.

Larson quickly powered by Chastain to reclaim the lead as Byron moved into second.

Chase Briscoe hit the wall in Turns 3 and 4 after a brake rotor failure which brought out the 11th caution of the race.

A handful of cars pit but Larson remained on the track. He led the way on the restart on Lap 233, followed by Byron, Harvick and Elliott.

With 40 laps to go, Larson’s lead over Byron was close to 4 seconds. Harvick ran third, Almirola fourth and Elliott fifth.

Larson’s lead over Byron grew to 4.2 seconds with 25 laps remaining in the race. Harvick was third, 5.3 seconds behind the leader.

Martin Truex Jr. was forced to pit under green with 10 laps to go to take on tires and fuel to make it to the finish.

With five laps remaining, Chastain had moved into the second spot, but trailed Larson by 5.6 seconds.

Stage 2

Larson passed Briscoe with three to go and held off Austin Dillon to claim the Stage 2 win.

Briscoe was third, Byron fourth and Kyle Busch rounded out the top-five.

Following the break between Stages 1 and 2, a handful of cars pit but Larson remained on the track and took over the race lead. Truex was penalized for staying on the right side on pit road while entering and had to restart from the rear of the field.

The race went green on Lap 98 with Larson out front followed by Kyle Busch, Stenhouse and Logano.

On Lap 132, Wallace had a left-rear flat tire and spun in Turns 1 and 2 to bring out a caution.

 

All lead-lap cars pit with Larson the first off pit road. Truex was penalized for speeding on pit road and had to restart from the rear of the field. Bell had an uncontrolled tire and also had to restart from the rear.

The race returned to green on Lap 139 with Larson out front followed by Hamlin, Kyle Busch and Stenhouse.

With 30 laps remaining in the second stage, Larson had opened a 3.5-second lead over Stenhouse, followed by Hamlin, Kyle Busch and Almirola.

On Lap 173, Cole Custer appeared to blow out a brake rotor which started a fire in his right-rear wheel well.

The lead-lap cars all pit with Briscoe the first off pit road with a two-tire pit stop. On the restart on the Lap 181, Briscoe was followed by Tyler Reddick (also a two-tire stop), Larson, Dillon and Kyle Busch.

Stage 1

Elliott held off Kurt Busch to take the Stage 1 win, just his second stage victory of the 2021 season.

Larson was third, Suarez was fourth and Kyle Busch rounded out the top-five.

Almirola started on the pole but the race went immediately under caution as Quin Houff lost his right-front wheel and hit the wall on Lap 1. Kyle Busch was credited as the leader.

The race returned to green on Lap 6 with Busch out front followed by Almirola and Larson.

Larson, Busch and Almirola went three-wide on the restart with Larson coming away with the lead.

 

With 60 to go in the first stage, Larson had built up a 1.2-second lead over Kyle Busch as Almirola ran third.

Blaney and Truex were among the first to make a green-flag pit stops with 50 laps to go in the stage.

On Lap 46, Reddick lost power and came to a stop on the backstretch which brought out a caution in the middle of green-flag stops. Kurt Busch was scored as the leader at the time of the caution.

Several lead-lap cars pit with Kurt Busch first off pit road. Kyle Busch stayed out and inherited the lead. He led the way on the restart on Lap 53 followed by Larson, Logano, Elliott and Kurt Busch.

Larson got around Kyle Busch and reclaimed the lead on Lap 54.

On Lap 55, Ryan Blaney had a brake rotor failure and slammed the wall between Turns 1 and 2 to bring the caution back out.

The race returned to green on Lap 62 with Kyle Busch out front.

Chris Buescher and Justin Haley hit the wall on Lap 78 to bring out the fourth caution of the race. He told his team he ran over something on the track. “Incredibly, we don’t clean anything up,” Buescher said.

Most lead-lap cars pit with Larson the first off pit road. Elliott remained on the track and inherited the lead. Bowman and Corey LaJoie were penalized for speeding on pit road and had to restart from the rear of the field.

Elliott led the way on the restart on Lap 86 followed by Kurt Busch, Erik Jones and Suarez. Larson lined up eighth.

Byron, Jones and Houff all had to start the race from the rear of the field. Blaney pit before the start to repair damage on his left-rear quarter panel and also started from the rear.

Cla # Driver Manufacturer Laps Time Gap Interval Laps Led Points
1 5 United States Kyle Larson Chevrolet 300 3:30'23.061     264 58
2 42 United States Ross Chastain Chevrolet 300 3:30'27.396 4.335 4.335 4 35
3 24 United States William Byron Chevrolet 300 3:30'30.220 7.159 2.824   41
4 10 United States Aric Almirola Ford 300 3:30'31.652 8.591 1.432 1 35
5 4 United States Kevin Harvick Ford 300 3:30'32.167 9.106 0.515   33
6 47 United States Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Chevrolet 300 3:30'33.477 10.416 1.310   38
7 99 Mexico Daniel Suarez Chevrolet 300 3:30'37.180 14.119 3.703   37
8 1 United States Kurt Busch Chevrolet 300 3:30'38.789 15.728 1.609 3 38
9 20 United States Christopher Bell Toyota 300 3:30'39.602 16.541 0.813   28
10 22 United States Joey Logano Ford 300 3:30'44.342 21.281 4.740   29
11 18 United States Kyle Busch Toyota 300 3:30'44.713 21.652 0.371 10 38
12 3 United States Austin Dillon Chevrolet 300 3:30'46.411 23.350 1.698   39
13 9 United States Chase Elliott Chevrolet 300 3:30'48.161 25.100 1.750 13 38
14 6 United States Ryan Newman Ford 300 3:30'48.975 25.914 0.814   23
15 48 United States Alex Bowman Chevrolet 300 3:30'49.377 26.316 0.402   22
16 7 United States Corey Lajoie Chevrolet 300 3:30'53.056 29.995 3.679   21
17 34 United States Michael McDowell Ford 300 3:30'53.650 30.589 0.594   20
18 38 Anthony Alfredo Ford 300 3:30'54.118 31.057 0.468   19
19 8 United States Tyler Reddick Chevrolet 300 3:30'54.761 31.700 0.643   18
20 43 United States Erik Jones Chevrolet 300 3:30'55.163 32.102 0.402   17
21 23 United States Bubba Wallace Toyota 299 3:30'31.045 1 Lap 1 Lap   16
22 11 United States Denny Hamlin Toyota 299 3:30'36.136 1 Lap 5.091   20
23 19 United States Martin Truex Jr. Toyota 299 3:30'43.373 1 Lap 7.237   14
24 2 United States Brad Keselowski Ford 299 3:30'52.325 1 Lap 8.952   16
25 21 United States Matt DiBenedetto Ford 298 3:30'31.450 2 Laps 1 Lap   13
26 53 United States Garrett Smithley Chevrolet 298 3:30'36.395 2 Laps 4.945    
27 52 United States Josh Bilicki Ford 298 3:30'40.607 2 Laps 4.212   10
28 51 United States J.J. Yeley Chevrolet 298 3:30'54.582 2 Laps 13.975    
29 78 United States B.J. McLeod Ford 295 3:30'28.273 5 Laps 3 Laps    
30 15 United States Joey Gase Chevrolet 295 3:30'44.585 5 Laps 16.312    
31 41 United States Cole Custer Ford 252 3:30'34.137 48 Laps 43 Laps   6
32 14 United States Chase Briscoe Ford 227 2:47'52.549 73 Laps 25 Laps 5 13
33 37 United States Ryan Preece Chevrolet 197 2:25'55.780 103 Laps 30 Laps   4
34 66 United States Chad Finchum Toyota 157 2:12'32.599 143 Laps 40 Laps    
35 13 United States David Starr Toyota 126 1:33'57.599 174 Laps 31 Laps    
36 77 United States Justin Haley Chevrolet 79 58'11.134 221 Laps 47 Laps    
37 17 United States Chris Buescher Ford 77 55'25.807 223 Laps 2 Laps   1
38 12 United States Ryan Blaney Ford 53 38'00.648 247 Laps 24 Laps   1
39 00 United States Quin Houff Chevrolet 0 3.870 300 Laps 53 Laps    

 

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