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Race report

NASCAR Cup Las Vegas: Byron rallies in overtime to lead Hendrick 1-2-3

William Byron had to rally in overtime to win the NASCAR Cup race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Watch: William Byron after Las Vegas win: ‘It’s all about the team’

Byron, who had dominated the event and won the first two stages having led 176 of 271 laps, lost the lead during a round of late pitstops and it appeared his Hendrick Motorsports team-mate Kyle Larson was set to cruise to victory.

But Aric Almirola’s spin seven laps from the end sent the race into a two-lap overtime. Martin Truex Jr elected to remain on the track while Byron and Larson came out second and third, thanks to two-tyre stops.

Byron powered past Truex entering Turn 3 with one lap remaining and held off Larson by 0.622 seconds to earn the win.

The victory is the fifth in Byron’s career and his first of the 2023 season. With fellow Hendrick driver Alex Bowman ending up third by passing Truex Jr, the Hendrick squad claimed its third-ever 1-2-3 finish in the NASCAR Cup series.

By a twist of fate, the top three lockout was also taken by the team’s remaining full-time drivers, with its fourth regular entry Chase Elliott out of action after suffering a leg injury in a snowboarding accident last week.

“Just been really confident about the group of guys that I have on this #24 team. They work extremely hard, and we spent a lot of time in the off-season just going through running at the sim with Chevy and running on iRacing and just trying to get better as a race car driver and as a team,” Byron said.

William Byron, Hendrick Motorsports, RaptorTough.com Chevrolet Camaro

William Byron, Hendrick Motorsports, RaptorTough.com Chevrolet Camaro

Photo by: Rusty Jarrett / NKP / Motorsport Images

“It’s all about the team. It’s a great pitcrew. Thinking of Chase [Elliott] back home. Wish he was out here with us. He's a great driver, great team-mate. Wish he was out here.

“Honestly when we got back in traffic, it was a little bit tight, but we knew we had speed so we just had to have the right things play out, and Rudy [Fugle, crew chief] made a good call, so it was good.”

Bubba Wallace ended up fourth ahead of Christopher Bell and Austin Cindric.

Truex Jr’s late gamble didn’t pay off as he dropped to seventh at the chequered flag, as Justin Haley, Kevin Harvick and Daniel Suarez completed the top 10.

Chevrolet drivers have now won the first three races of the season for the first time since the 2010 season.

Xfinity series regular Josh Berry, who substituted for the injured Elliott, ended up 29th and two laps down.

NASCAR Cup - Las Vegas race results - 271 laps

Cla Driver Manufacturer Laps Time Gap Interval
1 United States William Byron Chevrolet 271 2:50'35.732    
2 United States Kyle Larson Chevrolet 271 2:50'36.354 0.622 0.622
3 United States Alex Bowman Chevrolet 271 2:50'36.498 0.766 0.144
4 United States Bubba Wallace Toyota 271 2:50'36.598 0.866 0.100
5 United States Christopher Bell Toyota 271 2:50'36.905 1.173 0.307
6 United States Austin Cindric Ford 271 2:50'37.117 1.385 0.212
7 United States Martin Truex Jr. Toyota 271 2:50'37.122 1.390 0.005
8 United States Justin Haley Chevrolet 271 2:50'37.195 1.463 0.073
9 United States Kevin Harvick Ford 271 2:50'37.363 1.631 0.168
10 Mexico Daniel Suarez Chevrolet 271 2:50'37.532 1.800 0.169
11 United States Denny Hamlin Toyota 271 2:50'37.835 2.103 0.303
12 United States Ross Chastain Chevrolet 271 2:50'37.842 2.110 0.007
13 United States Ryan Blaney Ford 271 2:50'37.916 2.184 0.074
14 United States Kyle Busch Chevrolet 271 2:50'38.108 2.376 0.192
15 United States Tyler Reddick Toyota 271 2:50'38.320 2.588 0.212
16 United States Aric Almirola Ford 271 2:50'50.762 15.030 12.442
17 United States Brad Keselowski Ford 271 2:51'16.014 40.282 25.252
18 United States A.J. Allmendinger Chevrolet 271 2:52'14.656 1'38.924 58.642
19 United States Erik Jones Chevrolet 270 2:50'07.934 1 Lap 1 Lap
20 United States Corey Lajoie Chevrolet 270 2:50'38.040 1 Lap 30.106
21 United States Chris Buescher Ford 270 2:50'38.041 1 Lap 0.001
22 Ty Gibbs Toyota 270 2:50'38.486 1 Lap 0.445
23 United States Ryan Preece Ford 270 2:50'43.357 1 Lap 4.871
24 United States Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Chevrolet 270 2:50'49.794 1 Lap 6.437
25 United States Michael McDowell Ford 270 2:50'53.748 1 Lap 3.954
26 United States Harrison Burton Ford 269 2:50'40.600 2 Laps 1 Lap
27 United States Austin Dillon Chevrolet 269 2:50'43.595 2 Laps 2.995
28 United States Chase Briscoe Ford 269 2:50'43.924 2 Laps 0.329
29 Josh Berry Chevrolet 269 2:50'44.889 2 Laps 0.965
30 United States Noah Gragson Chevrolet 269 2:50'45.256 2 Laps 0.367
31 United States Todd Gilliland Ford 268 2:50'46.513 3 Laps 1 Lap
32 United States B.J. McLeod Chevrolet 266 2:50'55.305 5 Laps 2 Laps
33 United States J.J. Yeley Ford 265 2:50'41.692 6 Laps 1 Lap
34 United States Ty Dillon Chevrolet 265 2:50'43.456 6 Laps 1.764
35 United States Cody Ware Ford 259 2:50'53.440 12 Laps 6 Laps
36 United States Joey Logano Ford 183 1:53'04.000 88 Laps 76 Laps

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