BROOKLYN, Mich. – A slightly earlier pit stop allowed Martin Truex Jr. to leapfrog race-long dominator Brad Keselowski and collect his 15th stage win of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season Sunday at Michigan Int’l Speedway.
Truex pitted five laps sooner than Keselowski during a cycle of green flag pit stops during the second stage of the Pure Michigan 400, coming out with the lead on lap 114 and pacing the final seven laps of the stage en route to 10 more regular season bonus points and his 35th playoff point of the year.
Just as in the first stage of Sunday’s race, the second stage ran caution-free as well.
Though Keselowski led 103 of the first 110 laps of the race, including taking the top spot from Daniel Suarez on the restart after the first stage break at lap 67, he was forced to settle for the runner-up spot by 1.003 seconds at the green-checkered flag.
Kevin Harvick was third, just ahead of rookie Erik Jones, who continued his strong run of show with a fourth-place effort in the second stage.
“It feels good; this has been one of our better races,” Jones said. “We’ve got a really fast car for sure. We’ve done a good job of keeping track position and having good strategy in order for us to stay in contention. We haven’t had to change much all day long.”
“Hopefully we’ll be able to hang with them. I think the top will still be the preferred groove here; it should be interesting.”
Daniel Suarez completed the top five, with Ryan Blaney, Jamie McMurray, Kyle Larson, Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin also scoring points at the stage break.
About the Writer
Jacob Seelman is the Managing Editor of Race Chaser Online and creator of the Motorsports Madness radio show, airing at 7 p.m. Eastern every Monday on the Performance Motorsports Network.
Seelman grew up in the sport, watching his grandparents co-own the RaDiUs Motorsports NASCAR Cup Series team in the 1990s.
The 23-year-old is currently studying Broadcast Journalism at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, S.C., and is also serving as the full-time tour announcer for the Must See Racing Sprint Car Series.
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