Cup drivers were in Bristol, Tennessee for the Food City 500. Even though the rain forced the race into a Monday duel, the Last Great Colosseum still gave drivers a run for their money.
When the skies cleared for the race on Monday afternoon, it was Kyle Larson (42) and fellow young gun Chase Elliott (24) who filled out the front row after qualifying on Friday was rained out.
When the green flag flew, Larson shot out early on.
To lap 67, Kurt Busch (41) was the cause of the red flag after he went spinning. Chris Buescher (37) also got into the back of Reed Sorenson.
Jumping to the end of Stage 1, it was pole sitter Kyle Larson that led the pack to the green/white checkered flag. Larson led every lap in the first stage and scored 10 bonus points.
- Kyle Larson
- Martin Truex Jr. (78)
- Erik Jones (77)
- Joey Logano (22)
- Jimmie Johnson (48)
- Chase Elliott
- Jamie McMurray (1)
- Denny Hamlin (11)
- AJ Allmendinger (47)
- Kyle Busch (18)
Well into the second stage, on lap 209, the yellow flag was out as Kyle Busch blows his right-front tire and goes hard into the wall.
Luckily, his pit crew was able to fix his M&Ms Toyota and Busch went back to racing.
But on the following restart, it was Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88) who goes into the wall, putting fluid onto the track. Unfortunately this ended the day for the Number 88.
At the end of Stage 2, Martin Truex Jr. held onto the lead to score 10 bonus points as well.
- Martin Truex Jr.
- Joey Logano
- Jimmie Johnson
- Kevin Harvick (4)
- Jamie McMurray
- Erik Jones
- Kyle Larson
- Denny Hamlin
- Trevor Bayne (6)
- Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (17)
Now to lap 383, Kyle Busch, a five-time Bristol winner, just couldn’t catch a break. He blows his right-front tire again, sending him into the wall. This time it was the end of the day for the Number 18.
On lap 423, Kyle Larson got caught speeding in the last section of pit road. This took away any chance the 24 year-old had of wining the race.
And he wasn’t the only one…
Later, on lap 466, Martin Truex Jr. got caught speeding on pit road as well. The Stage 2 winner saw his chances of a second win this season, wash away.
At the end of it all though…
It was seven-time champion, Jimmie Johnson who held off Clint Bowyer (14)to go back-to-back at Thunder Valley.
This was Johnson’s 82nd cup victory, putting his seventh overall.
He is only one win away from tying Cale Yarborough and two wins away from matching Bobby Allison and Darrell Waltrip.
He is still 11 wins from tying former teammate Jeff Gordon who has 93.