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Talladega winners and losers

The NASCAR America crew picks out the biggest winners and losers from last weekend at Talladega.


Chevrolet — Facing questions about its performance, car and cohesion among its organizations, Chevy officials told its drivers to work together at Talladega. Showing a commitment to each other that Chevy drivers had not shown, they scored a 1-2-3 finish with Chase Elliott leading the way and quieting the Chevy critics for now.

Hendrick Motorsports — A 1-2 finish with Chase Elliott and Alex Bowman was needed relief for an organization that had yet to win this season before Sunday. For Bowman, it was a career-high finish.

Rookies — Ryan Preece finished a career-high third, and Daniel Hemric placed a career-best fifth. Preece’s best Cup finish before Sunday was eighth in the Daytona 500. Hemric’s best Cup finish before Sunday was 18th.

Gray Gaulding — He finished a career-high second in the Xfinity race to Tyler Reddick but was as excited as if he had won. Gaulding had not finished better than 12th in 16 previous series races. Gaulding said: “This is freaking awesome. This is what every driver wants to have is that last-lap chance to win a race and we did. Just came up a little short.”


Bubba Wallace — His mistake triggered an early accident that ended his day and that of Kevin Harvick and others. Wallace finished 39th. He has finished 30th or worse in three of the first 10 races.

Toyota With Chevrolet dictating its teams work together, that ended the alliance Toyota had with Hendrick Motorsports from the Daytona 500. Speedway racing is about how many cars you have. Toyota had seven cars, including two from part-time teams, in the 39-car field. Ford and Chevrolet each had more cars in the field. After going 1-2-3 in the Daytona 500, Toyota had only one car in the top 15.

Kyle Larson His bad luck continues with a last-lap tumble. He’s finished no better than 18th in his last five Cup races.