Brad Keselowski wins in overtime for 6th Talladega victory
Brad Keselowski passed Matt DiBenedetto for the lead on the last lap of overtime to win Sunday’s Cup race at Talladega Superspeedway.
The victory is Keselowski’s sixth at Talladega, tying him with Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Jeff Gordon for wins there. Only Dale Earnhardt (10 wins) has more victories at that track.
“I would have never dreamed I’d tie Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt Jr. here,” Keselowski said. “That’s something. Those guys are really legends. I’m just really proud of my team. We had an accident there early and they recovered and got it fixed up to where I could keep running.”
Keselowski led only the last lap in the 191-lap race in becoming the ninth different winning in the season’s first 10 races.
MORE: Talladega results
William Byron placed second. Daytona 500 winner Michael McDowell was third. Kevin Harvick placed fourth. DiBenedetto placed fifth. Kaz Grala was sixth.
“Gave it (my) all,” DiBenedetto said on his team’s radio after the race. “Our day will come.”
While DiBenedetto was contending for a win, a few of the favorites had their chances eliminated earlier.
Joey Logano saw his race end on the final lap of the opening stage with a dramatic crash.
Denny Hamlin got a big push from Ricky Stenhouse Jr. As Hamlin made his move to go underneath Logano, who was running third, Stenhouse hit the rear of Hamlin.
That contact caused Hamlin to hit Logano’s car. Logano slid backward and went airborne, clipping Bubba Wallace’s car before rolling back over. Logano was not injured.
Logano called out the type of racing at Talladega, saying: “I am wondering when we are going to stop because this is dangerous doing what we are doing.”
Hamlin failed to finish in the top five for only the second time in 10 races this season. He was hit with back-to-back pit road speeding penalties at about the halfway mark.
He crashed just before the start of the final lap of the second stage. Brad Keselowski went up to jump in front of the top lane ahead of Hamlin and Martin Truex Jr. That stacked up Hamlin and Truex. They made contact and hit the wall and also collected the Hendrick Motorsports cars of Byron, Alex Bowman and Chase Elliott. All continued.
STAGE 1 WINNER: Matt DiBenedetto
STAGE 2 WINNER: Bubba Wallace
WHO HAD A GOOD RACE: William Byron’s runner-up finish was his eighth consecutive top-10 finish. ... Kaz Grala’s sixth-place finish gives him top 10s in two of his three career Cup starts. ... Anthony Alfredo finished a career-high 12th. ... Harrison Burton placed 20th in his Cup debut.
WHO HAD A BAD RACE: Joey Logano’s streak of three consecutive top-10 finishes ended with his car going airborne at the end of the opening stage. He has been wrecked in the first two superspeedway races of the season. He was leading when wrecked by teammate Brad Keselowski on the last lap of the Daytona 500. Logano was running third at the time of Sunday’s accident. Logano finished 39th. ... Kyle Larson blew an engine after running only three laps and finished last in the 40-car field.
NOTABLE: Michael McDowell’s third-place finish was his fourth top 10 of the season, matching the most he’s had in a season. He had four top 10s last year.
NEXT: The series races May 2 at Kansas Speedway (3 p.m. ET on FS1)