Fontana NASCAR: Jimmie Johnson snatches victory in overtime

Jimmie Johnson snatched victory in overtime to win his second NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season at Fontana, ahead of Kevin Harvick

Fontana NASCAR: Jimmie Johnson snatches victory in overtime

Johnson sat third behind Denny Hamlin and Harvick when overtime began, but he showed blistering speed to dart past them both on his way to a 77th career win.

Harvick had dominated the race and look destined for his second successive victory, before Kyle Busch's crash two laps from the end sent the race beyond 200 laps.

In a stop-start race punctured by cautions second-place starter Harvick led for most of the first 71 laps before a tyre vibration forced him to make an unscheduled stop, allowing Martin Truex Jr to take over.

The Stewart-Haas Racing driver regained the lead after everyone else stopped 10 laps later but, as he was on older tyres, he was swiftly caught by Johnson.

However, Harvick's luck changed as he pitted just before the third caution of the race - putting him back into the lead.

More cautions followed and one worked perfectly for Johnson. He and Carl Edwards moved into first and second with Hamlin behind for what seemed to be the key restart of the race on lap 158.

Harvick moved back to the front after a thrilling seven-lap six-way fight for the lead and from there the 2014 Cup champion disappeared as the rest scrapped behind him.

Busch moved past Edwards for second and he was on course for his ninth successive top five finish until he crashed with two laps left.

Johnson had an early stint in the lead but was not in race-winning contention at the end until a quick stop from his pit crew, when overtime was announced, got him into third.

And he shocked the scrapping Hamlin and Harvick to win at Fontana for the sixth time in his career.

Kyle Larson was caught out earlier in the race as his left rear tyre failed, sending him across the track and smashing into the tyre barriers.

The 23-year-old was sent to be evaluated at the infield care centre, and later described it as one of the biggest crashes of his career.

Danica Patrick also suffered a big accident, after she was tagged by Kasey Kahne on lap 121.

RESULTS - 205 LAPS:

Pos Driver Team Car
1 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
2 Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet
3 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
4 Joey Logano Team Penske Ford
5 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Roush Fenway Racing Ford
6 Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
7 Carl Edwards Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
8 A.J. Allmendinger JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet
9 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford
10 Jamie McMurray Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet
11 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
12 Brian Scott Richard Petty Motorsports Ford
13 Brian Vickers Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet
14 Ryan Newman Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet
15 Paul Menard Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet
16 Landon Cassill Front Row Motorsports Ford
17 Casey Mears Germain Racing Chevrolet
18 Clint Bowyer HScott Motorsports Chevrolet
19 Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
20 Trevor Bayne Roush Fenway Racing Ford
21 Aric Almirola Richard Petty Motorsports Ford
22 David Ragan BK Racing Toyota
23 Regan Smith Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet
24 Austin Dillon Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet
25 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
26 Cole Whitt Premium Motorsports Chevrolet
27 Matt DiBenedetto BK Racing Toyota
28 Kasey Kahne Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
29 Michael Annett HScott Motorsports Chevrolet
30 Kurt Busch Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet
31 Michael McDowell Circle Sport-Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet
32 Martin Truex Jr. Furniture Row Racing Toyota
33 Chris Buescher Front Row Motorsports Ford
34 Jeffrey Earnhardt Go FAS Racing Ford
35 Ryan Blaney Wood Brothers Racing Ford
36 Josh Wise The Motorsports Group Chevrolet
37 Greg Biffle Roush Fenway Racing Ford
38 Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet
39 Kyle Larson Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet
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