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Kyle Larson wins NASCAR Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway

Kyle Larson earns his second win in three races, claiming victory in the NASCAR Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway.

Kyle Larson took the lead in the closing miles and ran away from the rest of the field to win Sunday’s 400-lap NASCAR Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway.

The win made Larson the season’s second multiple race winner. He won two races ago at Richmond Raceway. William Byron, Larson’s Hendrick Motorsports teammate, also has won twice.

After passing Joey Logano with 30 laps to go, Larson quickly built a three-second cushion and cruised to the win. Following in order were Logano, Martin Truex Jr., Denny Hamlin and Chase Briscoe. Larson won by 4.14 seconds.

MORE: Martinsville Cup results, driver points

MORE: What drivers said at Martinsville Speedway

A caution caused by J.J. Yeley’s crash into the outside wall bunched the field with 46 laps to go. Logano, who was lapped early in the race, led at the restart.

Larson was fifth on the restart, thanks to a pit decision to take two tires instead of four. That put him in position to make a run at Logano and the other leaders.

“We had a great car,” Larson told Fox Sports. “That was the best my car had been, I think, being able to get out front and manage. I never ever would have thought that I would win here at Martinsville. This place has been so tough on me. Just does not suit my driving style at all. I like to charge the center. I like to roll momentum, and that’s just not what this place is like.”

Cliff Daniels, Larson’s crew chief, called the two-tire change “a little bit of a gamble, but we knew there were some data points where it had worked. So that’s the way we went.”

Larson, 30, scored his first win at Martinsville. He has 21st career Cup wins. The victory was a record 28th for Hendrick Motorsports at Martinsville.

Larson said he and Daniels “teared up” on the last lap, recording a clearly emotional win at a track where Larson has struggled.

Kevin Harvick won the second stage, leading Briscoe, Hamlin, Tyler Reddick and Brad Keselowski to the finish line. Harvick lost a shot at the win late in the race when a lug nut came off his right front wheel.

Through two stages, only three drivers -- Ryan Preece, Ross Chastain and Harvick -- had led laps. Several drivers said passing was particularly different despite aerodynamic changes intended to improve competition at the half-mile track.

Preece, the pole winner, was a dominant force in the first stage, leading all 80 laps without a serious challenge. Following Preece in the top five were Aric Almirola, Reddick, Daniel Suarez and Briscoe.

Preece’s car was so strong in the early going that he was able to lap Logano, among others.

It took a pit road mistake to knock Preece from the lead. During a pit stop during a caution flag, Preece was caught speeding leaving his pit, dropping him from first place to the rear of the field. That error left the lead to Ross Chastain, who stayed on track during the caution period.

Chase Elliott, who returned to racing Sunday after missing six races with a leg injury, rallied late to finish 10th.

Stage 1 winner: Ryan Preece

Stage 2 winner: Kevin Harvick

Who had a good race: Ryan Preece led the race’s first 135 laps before falling victim to a pit-road penalty. ... Aric Almirola had one of his best runs of the season, racing in and around the top five much of the day. ... Chase Elliott returned from injury and finished 10th, running fastest in the final stage.

Who had a bad race: Kyle Busch was penalized for speeding on pit road early in the race and failed to make noise at the front of the pack.

Next: The series races next at Talladega Superspeedway April 23 at 3 p.m. ET.