Jimmie Johnson wins seventh NASCAR Cup title in chaotic finale

Jimmie Johnson weathered a chaotic end to the Homestead NASCAR Sprint Cup finale to claim a record-equalling seventh title alongside Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt

Jimmie Johnson wins seventh NASCAR Cup title in chaotic finale

Johnson had to work hard from the start after race officials deemed his Hendrick Motorsports team had made adjustments to his Chevrolet after pre-race inspection, demoting him to the back of the grid.

But a spirited first 50 laps brought him back into the top five and into title contention.

Two slow pitstops mid-way through left him with a tough task to claim the race win, decided in the last 20 laps.

Carl Edwards looked the most comfortable of the four title contenders throughout, and in second behind non-Chase contender Kyle Larson he appeared to be in the pound seat for the title.

But a late caution just 11 laps from the end for Dylan Lupton's left rear puncture prompted a final flurry of pitstops.

Edwards left the pits second behind Larson, but his championship ended when he collided with fellow title contender Joey Logano as he tried to defend the inside line on the restart.

The contact sent Edwards' Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota into the wall on lap 253, collecting a host of other cars as it speared back across the track.

That caused a final red flag with 10 laps to go, and Johnson managed the restart well to go into second behind Larson.

A final caution for Ricky Stenhouse Jr left the race going into overtime, where Johnson blasted into the lead on the restart to win from Larson and Kevin Harvick.

Edwards showed remarkable sportsmanship despite the agony of his title loss, heading to Logano's crew chief Todd Gordon to shake his hand before heading to the medical centre, explaining the clash as a racing incident.

Logano eventually crossed the line fourth while Kyle Busch finished sixth. Logano couldn't maintain the pace after the hit with Edwards while Busch struggled to keep up during the overtime phase.

In the Xfinity Series, Mexican Daniel Suarez became the first non-US driver to take the crown.

To win, Suarez had to beat fellow Chase contenders Justin Allgaier, who has two Sprint Cup seasons under his belt, Elliott Sadler and the Sprint Cup-bound Erik Jones, who will be competing for the Furniture Row team next season.

A third place at Homestead for Johnny Sauter was enough to earn him the Truck Series title for the Kyle Busch Motorsports team.

RESULTS - 268 LAPS:

Pos Driver Team Car Gap
1 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 3h07m10.s
2 Kyle Larson Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 0.466s
3 Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet 0.498s
4 Joey Logano Team Penske Ford 1.221s
5 Jamie McMurray Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 1.333s
6 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 1.551s
7 Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 2.073s
8 A.J. Allmendinger JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 2.651s
9 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 2.970s
10 Michael McDowell Circle Sport-Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet 2.995s
11 Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 3.275s
12 Austin Dillon Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 3.366s
13 Kurt Busch Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet 3.495s
14 Paul Menard Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 3.562s
15 Brian Scott Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 3.945s
16 Alex Bowman Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 5.080s
17 Greg Biffle Roush Fenway Racing Ford 1 Lap
18 Casey Mears Germain Racing Chevrolet 1 Lap
19 Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet 2 Laps
20 Trevor Bayne Roush Fenway Racing Ford 2 Laps
21 Landon Cassill Front Row Motorsports Ford 2 Laps
22 Tony Stewart Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet 2 Laps
23 Clint Bowyer HScott Motorsports Chevrolet 2 Laps
24 Chris Buescher Front Row Motorsports Ford 2 Laps
25 Ryan Newman Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet Accident
26 Ryan Blaney Wood Brothers Racing Ford 4 Laps
27 Matt DiBenedetto BK Racing Toyota 4 Laps
28 Michael Annett HScott Motorsports Chevrolet 4 Laps
29 David Ragan BK Racing Toyota 4 Laps
30 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Roush Fenway Racing Ford Accident
31 Jeffrey Earnhardt BK Racing Toyota 7 Laps
32 Reed Sorenson Premium Motorsports Toyota 9 Laps
33 Ty Dillon Circle Sport-Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet Accident
34 Carl Edwards Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Accident
35 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford Accident
36 Martin Truex Jr. Furniture Row Racing Toyota Accident
37 Kasey Kahne Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet Accident
38 Regan Smith Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet Accident
39 Dylan Lupton Go FAS Racing Ford 18 Laps
40 Aric Almirola Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 55 Laps


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