Jobless Kenseth wins at Phoenix

Kenseth takes emotional win at Phoenix

Matt Kenseth may be without a ride anywhere in NASCAR in 2018, but that didn’t stop him from taking the victory at the penultimate round of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup.

His victory, which denied Chase Elliott a spot in the Championship 4 next week at Homestead-Miami also mean that only Ford and Toyota, not Chevrolet, can win the title.

The drivers fighting for the championship will be Martin Truex Jr., Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick and Brad Keselowski. Only Truex is yet to win a title and will be the firm favouite after his dominant season in 2017.

Kenseth led 60 of the 312 laps, breaking through for his first win of the year, second victory at the Arizona track and the 39th of his career. The 45-year-old driver got by Elliott with 10 laps left.

Along with Elliott, Denny Hamlin, Ryan Blaney and Jimmie Johnson were eliminated from the NASCAR Playoffs in the cut-off race.

Hamlin’s exit was the most dramatic as his Joe Gibbs Racing No. 11 Toyota crashed into the Turn 3 wall on Lap 275, just a few laps after repeated contact with Elliott.

“We had a fast car all day. … We put ourselves in good position, things just didn’t work out there at the end,” said Hamlin.

The two had differences in the Round of 8 opener two weeks ago at Martinsville Speedway, where Hamlin made contact that sent Elliott spinning from the lead.

That crash opened the championship window for Keselowski, who was 19 points above the cut-off line at the chequered flag.

“It feels a little bit like Christmas,” Keselowski said. “Sometimes you have to have a little luck on your side.”

Johnson was the first to fall from contention, scraping the Turn 3 wall with a right-front tyre down and bringing out the race’s second caution period on Lap 149.

VIDEO: Race recap

RESULTS: Can-Am 500 – Phoenix Raceway

Pos # Driver Make Laps Laps Led
1 20  Matt Kenseth Toyota 312 60
2 24  Chase Elliott Chevrolet 312 32
3 78  Martin Truex Jr. Toyota 312
4 77  Erik Jones Toyota 312
5 4  Kevin Harvick Ford 312
6 1  Jamie McMurray Chevrolet 312
7 18  Kyle Busch Toyota 312
8 17  Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Ford 312
9 43  Aric Almirola Ford 312
10 88  Dale Earnhardt Jr. Chevrolet 312
11 13  Ty Dillon Chevrolet 312
12 22  Joey Logano Ford 312
13 14  Clint Bowyer Ford 312
14 3  Austin Dillon Chevrolet 312
15 27  Paul Menard Chevrolet 312
16 2  Brad Keselowski Ford 312
17 21  Ryan Blaney Ford 312 10
18 19  Daniel Suarez Toyota 312
19 5  Kasey Kahne Chevrolet 311
20 31  Ryan Newman Chevrolet 311
21 41  Kurt Busch Ford 310
22 95  Michael McDowell Chevrolet 309
23 47  A.J. Allmendinger Chevrolet 309
24 34  Landon Cassill Ford 309
25 10  Danica Patrick Ford 309
26 15  D.J. Kennington Chevrolet 307
27 32  Matt DiBenedetto Ford 306
28 66  David Starr Chevrolet 305
29 33  Jeffrey Earnhardt Chevrolet 305
30 7  Joey Gase Chevrolet 304
31 23  Corey Lajoie Toyota 303
32 00  Derrike Cope Chevrolet 302
33 38  David Ragan Ford 301
34 51  Kyle Weatherman Chevrolet 294
35 11  Denny Hamlin Toyota 275 191
36 72  Cole Whitt Chevrolet 258
37 37  Chris Buescher Chevrolet 247
38 6  Trevor Bayne Ford 226
39 48  Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet 148
40 42  Kyle Larson Chevrolet 104 11

STANDINGS

Pos
Driver
Pts
Behind
Wins
Starts
Top 5’s
Top 10’s
Poles
1
Kevin Harvick
5,000
Leader
2
35
13
22
4
2
Kyle Busch
5,000
Leader
5
35
13
21
8
3
Martin Truex Jr.
5,000
Leader
7
35
18
25
3
4
Brad Keselowski
5,000
Leader
3
35
15
20
2
5
Chase Elliott
2,338
-2,662
0
35
11
20
1
6
Denny Hamlin
2,320
-2,680
2
35
15
21
1
7
Matt Kenseth
2,311
-2,689
1
35
10
17
2
8
Ryan Blaney
2,296
-2,704
1
35
4
14
2
9
Kyle Larson
2,266
-2,734
4
35
14
19
3
10
Jimmie Johnson
2,250
-2,750
3
35
4
11
0
11
Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
2,200
-2,800
2
35
4
9
1
12
Jamie McMurray
2,200
-2,800
0
35
3
17
0
13
Austin Dillon
2,198
-2,802
1
35
3
4
0
14
Kasey Kahne
2,194
-2,806
1
35
3
6
0
15
Kurt Busch
2,193
-2,807
1
35
6
15
1
16
Ryan Newman
2,169
-2,831
1
35
7
12
0
17
Joey Logano
894
-4,106
1
35
10
16
2
18
Erik Jones
847
-4,153
0
35
5
14
1
19
Clint Bowyer
845
-4,155
0
35
6
13
0
20
Daniel Suarez
774
-4,226
0
35
1
12
0
21
Dale Earnhardt Jr.
656
-4,344
0
35
1
8
2
22
Trevor Bayne
642
-4,358
0
35
2
6
0
23
Paul Menard
610
-4,390
0
35
2
3
0
24
Ty Dillon
582
-4,418
0
35
0
0
0
25
Chris Buescher
547
-4,453
0
35
0
4
0
26
Michael McDowell
529
-4,471
0
35
1
1
0
27
Danica Patrick
510
-4,490
0
35
0
1
0
28
AJ Allmendinger
508
-4,492
0
35
1
5
0
29
Aric Almirola
483
-4,517
0
28
3
6
0
30
David Ragan
427
-4,573
0
35
0
3
0
31
Landon Cassill
368
-4,632
0
35
0
0
0
32
Matt DiBenedetto
356
-4,644
0
35
0
2
0
33
Cole Whitt
313
-4,687
0
35
0
0
0
34
Corey LaJoie
223
-4,777
0
31
0
0
0
35
Gray Gaulding
164
-4,836
0
27
0
1
0
36
Reed Sorenson
148
-4,852
0
27
0
0
0
37
Jeffrey Earnhardt
140
-4,860
0
33
0
0
0
38
Derrike Cope
42
-4,958
0
15
0
0
0
39
Michael Waltrip
29
-4,971
0
1
0
1
0
40
D.J. Kennington
17
-4,983
0
4
0
0
0
41
Billy Johnson
15
-4,985
0
1
0
0
0
42
Boris Said
15
-4,985
0
2
0
0
0
43
Gary Klutt
6
-4,994
0
1
0
0
0
44
Cody Ware
6
-4,994
0
5
0
0
0
45
Alon Day
5
-4,995
0
1
0
0
0
46
Stephen Leicht
5
-4,995
0
1
0
0
0
47
Kyle Weatherman
5
-4,995
0
2
0
0
0
48
Kevin O’Connell
4
-4,996
0
1
0
0
0
49
Hermie Sadler
3
-4,997
0
1
0
0
0
50
Tommy Regan
3
-4,997
0
1
0
0
0
51
Brendan Gaughan
0
-5,000
0
4
0
1
0
52
Darrell Wallace Jr.
0
-5,000
0
4
0
0
0
53
Timmy Hill
0
-5,000
0
15
0
0
0
54
Elliott Sadler
0
-5,000
0
3
0
0
0
55
Ross Chastain
0
-5,000
0
2
0
0
0
56
Joey Gase
0
-5,000
0
8
0
0
0
57
Regan Smith
0
-5,000
0
2
0
0
0
58
JJ Yeley
0
-5,000
0
4
0
0
0
59
Ryan Sieg
0
-5,000
0
5
0
0
0
60
David Starr
0
-5,000
0
2
0
0
0
61
B.J. McLeod
0
-5,000
0
8
0
0
0
62
Brett Moffitt
0
-5,000
0
7
0
0
0
63
Carl Long
0
-5,000
0
3
0
0
0
64
Ray Black II
0
-5,000
0
2
0
0
0
65
Josh Bilicki
0
-5,000
0
2
0
0
0
66
Mark Thompson
0
-5,000
0
1
0
0
0
67
Justin Marks
0
-5,000
0
1
0
0
0

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