Published: Thu, August 16, 2018
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Harvick gets "Lucky 7th" win at MI

Harvick gets

Out of NASCAR's Big Three, Kevin Harvick was the Big One in Sunday's Consumers Energy 400 at Michigan International Speedway.

"He told me before the race, 'Dad, if you win, I want to go out and wave the checkered flag.' And I said, 'Well, if you do that, you've got to take the victory lap with me.' "It's pretty awesome to a part of NASCAR and bring your kids to work and experience these kind of things with them". In fact, it took more than a lap to accomplish, as Dillon nursed his auto around the 2.0-mile track with enough speed to finish fourth, keeping Ryan Blaney behind him.

Seven-time Cup champion Jimmie Johnson - who is still looking for his first win of the 2018 season - has 17 wins in that time frame as does reigning Cup champ Martin Truex Jr. More important than the Ford win and two stage wins for Harvick might just be his sweeping of the seven playoff points that came with it, as he left the Irish Hills of MI with 40 precious playoff points. The rest of the field has combined to win just six of 23 races. Keelan got the checkered flag and then got a special lift into the "passenger" side of the auto for the ride to Victory Lane. After a round of green flag pit stops, Kevin Harvick held the point and took the green and white checkered flag winning the stage. Here's a look at the odds to win this race. But Truex had his second bout of trouble when he ran out of gas on Lap 119, forcing him down to 31st after penalties for pitting when pit road was closed, and also received a tire penalty. He's won five races with the organization, and qualified for the playoffs each season.

"Well, they're motivated, and I think as you look at it, we're three weeks away from the playoffs, and you don't want it to shut off, you want it to keep going", Harvick said. Last year, it went long just because I felt I deserved more.

"Any win in this division of racing is hard to come by, and like I say, I've been on both sides of that", Harvick reiterated.

"So with that in mind, it's good for everybody's morale at Team Penske, and on the No. 2 team as well, but of course we want to break through and win as well".

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Kyle Busch, who started the day with the points lead, finished third in his No. 18 Toyota - more than 4 seconds behind Harvick. As I indicated, we not where we need to be to just win on speed against those guys week-in and week-out, so we've just got to find it.

Austin Dillon and Ryan Newman, in Chevrolets for Richard Childress Racing, were fifth and sixth.

(12) Kurt Busch, Ford, 200.

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(9) Joey Logano, Ford, 200.

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(4) Erik Jones, Toyota, 200. Six laps later, Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott pitted for loose left-front and right-rear tires, respectively.

(29) Michael McDowell, Ford, 199. The race victor stopped at the start-finish line to celebrate with the fans and his son, Keelan, made his way out to give his dad a hug.

(33) BJ McLeod (i), Ford, 194. Gray Gaulding, Chevrolet, 190.446 35.

(20) William Byron #, Chevrolet, 187. Timmy Hill, Chevrolet, 185.648 38.

With laps running down in the race, Truex was able to pick up a number of spots on the 2-mile oval but could not get back to the top five even though he was posting fast lap times.

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