Kyle Larson failed to advance to the Round of Eight in the NASCAR Playoffs. However, he was still able to win in the round in the Dixie Vodka 400.
Seven of the eight remaining NASCAR Playoff drivers were hoping to secure their position in the Championship Four by winning at Homestead-Miami Speedway Sunday afternoon (10/24). Joey Logano clinched his spot one week prior by winning in Las Vegas. Some of the Playoff drivers had their shot at the win. However, Kyle Larson would not be denied.
Kyle was the dominant car from start to finish. He led a race high 199 laps in the 267 lap race. That’s more than six times the car with the second most laps led at 32 laps out front by William Byron. Kyle was the winner in both Stage One and Stage Two of the race.
There were some incidents during the race. Even one involving Kyle and Martin Truex Jr. on pit road. A small mistake on Martin’s part led to accidental contact between him and Kyle that spun Martin’s car.
The fifth (and final) caution came out on lap 246 when the #8 Chevrolet spun on the track. That brought all the cars back together for a re-start. It was the opportunity the Playoff drivers near the front needed to try to get in front of Kyle Larson. However, as stated earlier … Kyle was not going to be denied.
Kyle held on to the lead during the re-start and kept it through the final 17 laps to win. It was his first ever career win in the Cup Series at Homestead-Miami Speedway. It gave Kyle his third win of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series Season.
Ross Chastain finished in second-place (the only Playoff Driver in the Top 5). A.J. Allmendinger took home third-place. Austin Dillon and Brad Keselowski rounded out the top five in fourth and fifth respectively. See the complete race results for the Dixie Vodka 400 here.
Joey Logano remains at the top of the Playoff Standings as the only driver in the Round of Eight locked in the Championship Four via a win in this round. Ross Chastain remains in second place and Chase Elliott holds on to third place. William Byron had a good enough day to move up to fourth place in the standings to be the final driver above the cutline for the Championship Four. See the complete NASCAR Cup Series Point Standings here.
Next week will be an elimination race where the four drivers below that cutline will see their championship hopes end. That elimination race will be a tough one. It will be 500 laps around the Martinsville Speedway. The NASCAR Playoffs will be short trackin’ in the Xfinity 500 Sunday, October 30th.
By: Buck Stevens