Denny Hamlin wins NASCAR Cup pole at Watkins Glen

Lynette Rowe
August 10, 2018

Truex climbed to fourth, dropping Johnson to 13th and out of the running for the 10-minute second round.

Chase Elliott's days as a non-winner in NASCAR's premier series came to an end Sunday when he drove to victory in Sunday's Go Bowling at The Glen Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at the Watkins Glen International circuit in upstate NY. He took the lead for his first time on lap 27 after challenging Kyle Busch to start the second stage of the event. When Truex bobbled in the chicane on the final lap, Elliott was home free.

NASCAR Hall of Fame driver Bill Elliott, who has not competed in a NASCAR national series event in more than six years, will drive for GMS Racing in the Xfinity Series race August 25 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Busch held the point until lap 18 when #78 Martin Truex Jr took over the lead for the final laps of stage one, as Busch and Elliott each hit the pitlane.

"If you're Chase Elliott, how could you have had a better first win?"

Finishing third was Kyle Busch of Joe Gibbs Racing.

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Moments later, Joey Logano slid off course on lap two and dropped to the rear of the field, then headed to the garage with a broken radiator, his day done. Aric Almirola and Ryan Blaney made contact in Turn 7 on Lap 3. Busch was the early race favorite and led 31 laps before giving up the lead to Elliott.

The NASCAR Cup Series is racing at Watkins Glen. All three of Truex's road course wins were won with strategy, including a year ago at The Glen. It occurred on an afternoon where he led a race-high 52 laps and won Stage 2 - his third consecutive race with a stage win.

Paul Menard was dealt a blow to his playoff chances before the race even started when his No. 21 Ford failed inspection Sunday morning and he was sent to the rear of the 37-car field. Out of fuel after the finish, he was pushed to victory lane by the banged-up No. 48 Chevy of seven-time Cup champion Jimmie Johnson, a teammate and one of his staunchest supporters, as his father raced to join the celebration after spotting.

Chase Elliott (9) makes his way through the esses during a NASCAR Cup Series auto race, Sunday, Aug. 5, 2018, in Watkins Glen, N.Y.

Both of these statements are set to change on Saturday, August 25, as Elliott, 62, is set to return to NASCAR in the Xfinity Series race at Road America.

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