Reigning champion Brad Keselowski finally scored his first win of the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup season in a Charlotte Motor Speedway race transformed by a late caution.
Jimmie Johnson had been on course for a dominant win in what had turned into a processional event until a debris yellow with 27 of 334 laps remaining.
The five-time champion's Hendrick team-mates Kasey Kahne and Jeff Gordon, both of whom had led stints earlier on, only took two tyres at the subsequent pitstops and jumped to the front.
Johnson restarted third, but a big slide as he attacked at the restart dropped him to seventh.
That allowed Johnson's title rival Matt Kenseth and Keselowski to move into victory contention after making gradual progress up the order through the night following poor early stints.
As Gordon swiftly fell back, Keselowski passed Kenseth and began to attack Kahne.
At first the Hendrick driver was able to sweep back in front using a wider line every time Keselowski's Penske Ford got alongside.
The battle was finally resolved with eight laps to go, and Keselowski was able to pull clearly ahead and go on to win by a second.
Kahne held off Kenseth and Johnson for second, meaning Kenseth keeps a four-point championship lead.
Kyle Busch was fifth, followed by front-row starter Kevin Harvick and Gordon.
Results - 334 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Brad Keselowski Penske Ford 3h09m53.000s 2. Kasey Kahne Hendrick Chevrolet +1.023s 3. Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Toyota +1.074s 4. Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Chevrolet +1.409s 5. Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Toyota +3.069s 6. Kevin Harvick Childress Chevrolet +5.589s 7. Jeff Gordon Hendrick Chevrolet +6.427s 8. Ryan Newman Stewart-Haas Chevrolet +7.631s 9. Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Toyota +7.871s 10. Carl Edwards Roush Fenway Ford +12.637s 11. Clint Bowyer Waltrip Toyota +19.411s 12. Juan Pablo Montoya Earnhardt Ganassi Chevrolet +26.291s 13. Ricky Stenhouse Jr Roush Fenway Ford +30.284s 14. Kurt Busch Furniture Row Chevrolet +1 lap 15. Dale Earnhardt Jr Hendrick Chevrolet +1 lap 16. Greg Biffle Roush Fenway Ford +1 lap 17. Marcos Ambrose Petty Ford +1 lap 18. Joey Logano Penske Ford +2 laps 19. Jamie McMurray Earnhardt Ganassi Chevrolet +2 laps 20. Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Chevrolet +2 laps 21. Jeff Burton Childress Chevrolet +2 laps 22. Martin Truex Jr Waltrip Toyota +3 laps 23. Aric Almirola Petty Ford +3 laps 24. Paul Menard Childress Chevrolet +3 laps 25. Brian Vickers Waltrip Toyota +4 laps 26. David Reutimann BK Toyota +4 laps 27. Brian Scott Childress Chevrolet +4 laps 28. Bobby Labonte JTG Daugherty Toyota +5 laps 29. David Gilliland Front Row Ford +6 laps 30. David Ragan Front Row Ford +6 laps 31. Casey Mears Germain Ford +6 laps 32. Dave Blaney Baldwin Chevrolet +7 laps 33. Landon Cassill Circle Sport Chevrolet +7 laps 34. Cole Whitt Swan Toyota +7 laps 35. Travis Kvapil BK Toyota +8 laps 36. Timmy Hill FAS Lane Ford +10 laps Retirements: Kyle Larson Phoenix Chevrolet 247 laps Blake Koch Leavine Ford 216 laps Joe Nemechek NEMCO Toyota 149 laps Michael McDowell Parsons Ford 83 laps Josh Wise Front Row Ford 81 laps Mark Martin Stewart-Haas Chevrolet 80 laps JJ Yeley Baldwin Chevrolet 23 laps