The Go Bowling at The Glen NASCAR Cup Series race started in the rain and ended with some drama between two Hendrick Motorsports (HMS) teammates.
The start of the race at Watkins Glen International road course was delayed due to lightning in the area of the track. It was then delayed even longer as crews worked to reduce standing water on the track. The race finally went green with cars using rain tires around two hours late.
HMS teammates Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson had been the talk of the garage as the cars to beat in the race. They started the race in first and second positions respectively as NASCAR chose to use a single-file start due to the wet track.
Chase led the most laps in the race with 29 laps out front. Most of those laps Kyle was running right behind him in second. While the two HMS teammates were the class of the field, their two-stop pit strategy took them off the track when winning a stage was at stake. Chase Briscoe was the winner of stage one and Joey Logano the winner of stage two.
There were only three caution periods due to on track incidents. Those all came in stage three. The final one took place with just nine laps remaining in the race. The restart took place with just five laps remaining. Chase was the leader with Kyle next to him in the front row.
Kyle drove deep in to turn one next to his HMS teammate. That move took him up the track and into the side of his teammate’s car. The contact forced Chase to go wide and caused him to lose a few spots almost immediately. It allowed Kyle to take over the lead of the race for the first time.
Kyle was able to hold the lead for the final five laps to claim a sweep of the weekend races at Watkins Glen. He had won the Xfinity race Saturday (8/20) off a late-race restart as well. Kyle’s Sunday (8/21) win in the NASCAR Cup Series gave him back-to-back Go Bowling at The Glen wins as he was the winner of the race in 2021 as well. It also gave him his second win of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season.
AJ Allmendinger claimed second-place with Joey Logano in third. Chase Elliott was able to take home a fourth-place finish with Daniel Suárez in fifth. See the complete race results for the Go Bowling at The Glen NASCAR Cup Series race here.
Following the race Sunday at Watkins Glen International Chase Elliott remains the leader in the regular season point standings. While he was knocked out of a chance to win the race, he has won the 2022 NASCAR Cup Season Regular Season Championship. That title comes with 15 additional Playoff Points to help him during the post-season. Had he won the race he would have gotten that and additional Playoff Points for the win. I’m not sure the title will be much of a consolation to him as a result.
Kyle Larson moves up to second in the point standings swapping places with Ryan Blaney now in third. Joey Logano moves up to fourth-place with Ross Chastain holding steady in fifth. See the complete 2022 NASCAR Cup Series point standings here.
The fifteen drivers that are 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season winners are all now locked in the post-season. There is only one spot open heading to the last race of the regular season. That spot is currently held by Ryan Blaney with Martin Truex Jr. just below the cutline 25 points behind. These are the only two drivers that can claim that final spot in the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs by points alone. Every other driver that can make the post-season will have to win to get in. That will make next race a very intense one for drivers, teams and fans.
That race, the Coke Zero Sugar 400, will take place Saturday night (8/27) under the lights at Daytona International Speedway.
By: Buck Stevens