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NASCAR America: Battling teammates, Harvick versus Busch

With a playoff point on the line, Kevin Harvick stole Stage 2 late at Chicagoland from teammate Kurt Busch.

The final lap of the Overton’s 400 at Chicagoland Speedway was certainly exciting when Kyle Busch and Kyle Larson traded paint in a race to the checkers that may go down as one of the best finishes ever. But it wasn’t the only battle for the lead in Sunday’s race that deserved notice.

On the final lap of Stage 2, Kevin Harvick squeezed between his teammate Kurt Busch and the wall coming out of turn four to grab the bonus point that goes along with a stage win.

Busch was not happy about getting passed.

“Never expected that from a teammate. Never expected it. Wow,” Busch said over the radio.

“You’re racing,” Jeff Burton replied during the race broadcast. “It’s a stage win, man. You’re racing.”

With a day to reflect on his comments, Burton’s opinion did not change.

“If stage racing matters – if points matter, then there are no teammates when it comes to the finish of the race or the finish of the stage.”

The dramatic last lap of Stage 2 did precisely what NASCAR hoped it would when they implemented the rule. It made racing during the middle stages of the race relevant.

“Why are we gonna watch? If Kevin Harvick is gonna let someone win the race or a stage, then why are you gonna sit in 95 degree temperature and watch that? Fans deserve to see drivers going at it.

“If you’re expecting that much from a teammate – to let you win – your expectations are way too high.”

For more, watch the video above.

Follow Dan Beaver on Twitter.