23rd Annual Brickyard 400 Race Report

23rd Annual Brickyard 400 Race Report

Date:  July 24, 2016
Event:  23rd annual Brickyard 400 (Round 20 of 36)
Series:  NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Location:  Indianapolis Motor Speedway (2.5-mile oval)
Winner:  Kyle Busch of Joe Gibbs Racing in a green-white-checkered finish (Toyota)

SHR Finish:
Kevin Harvick (Started 7th, Finished 6th / Running, completed 170 of 170 laps)
Tony Stewart (Started 3rd, Finished 11th / Running, completed 170 of 170 laps)
Kurt Busch (Started 11th, Finished 16th / Running, completed 170 of 170 laps)
Danica Patrick (Started 24th, Finished 22nd / Running, completed 169 of 170 laps)

SHR Points:
Kevin Harvick (1st with 671 points, 24 ahead of second)
Kurt Busch (3rd with 627 points, 44 out of first)
Danica Patrick (24th with 373 points, 136 ahead of 31st-place)
Tony Stewart (27th with 317 points, 80 ahead of 31st-place)

Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS, led the four-car Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) contingent Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway by finishing sixth in the 23rd annual Brickyard 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race. It was Harvick’s 16th top-10 this season and his 10th top-10 in 16 career Sprint Cup starts at Indianapolis.

Tony Stewart, driver of the No. 14 Mobil 1/Chevy Summer Sell Down Chevrolet SS for SHR, finished 11th. Stewart was headed toward a top-10 finish until a pit-road speeding penalty with 38 laps remaining put him a lap down at the tail end of the field. Stewart restarted in 30th on lap 135 and rallied to regain his lap and pick up 19 positions before the checkered flag waved.

Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 41 Haas Automation/Monster Energy Chevrolet SS for SHR, finished 16th. Last-lap contact with the No. 3 Chevrolet of Austin Dillon while vying for 10th place forced Busch out of the groove, allowing others to pass him for position.

Danica Patrick, driver of the No. 10 Nature’s Bakery Chevrolet SS for SHR, finished 22nd after getting collected in a multicar accident with only seven laps remaining.

Kyle Busch won the Brickyard 400 in dominating fashion by leading three times for a race-high 149 laps. Busch survived four late-race restarts that pushed the event into overtime to collect his 38th career Sprint Cup victory, his fourth of the season and his second straight at Indianapolis. Busch’s margin of victory over second-place Matt Kenseth was 2.126 seconds. Finishing third was Jimmie Johnson, while Denny Hamlin and Kyle Larson rounded out the top-five. Harvick, Joey Logano, Martin Truex Jr., Dillon and Paul Menard comprised the remainder of the top-10.

There were eight caution periods for 34 laps, with seven drivers failing to finish the 170-lap race around the 2.5-mile oval, which went 10 laps past its scheduled 160-lap distance due to a green-white-checkered finish.

With round 20 of 36 complete, Harvick continues to lead SHR and the series in the championship standings. He remained first with 671 points, 24 ahead of second-place Brad Keselowski. Busch is third with 627 points, 44 behind Harvick. Patrick is 24th with 373 points, 136 ahead of 31st-place Chris Buescher. Stewart is 27th with 317 points, 80 ahead of 31st.

Harvick, Busch and Stewart are all eligible to compete in the 16 driver, 10-race Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, which begins after the Sept. 10 race at Richmond (Va.) International Raceway. All have won a race this season and are among the top-30 in points, the two requirements necessary to secure a spot in the Chase. Patrick can also earn a Chase berth by winning a race and staying inside the top-30. Six races remain before the Chase begins Sept. 18 at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois.

The next event on the Sprint Cup schedule is the Pennsylvania 400 on Sunday, July 31 at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway. The race begins at 1:30 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by NBCSN.