Ryan Blaney is Victorious at Talladega

Credit: Debbie Ross for Skirts and Scuffs

Ryan Blaney earned his first victory of the season at Talladega Super Speedway, holding off Ryan Newman by a nose to clinch his way into the next round of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs.

Blaney spun early on Sunday while making it to pit road before rain delayed the remainder of the 1000Bulbs.com 500. The Team Penske driver was last in the playoffs coming into the weekend at the 2.66-mile track.

“The last lap I saw the 11 and 6 coming on the top, down the back, they were tandem together.” Blaney said, “I saw them coming and I wanted to pull up, but they were coming so much faster than us that if I would’ve pulled up to try to block them, they would’ve just split me.”

“You can’t block runs like you used to with this package...I figured my best bet was to try to pull the 11 off of em.”

Newman earned his third top-five finish of 2019 with second, Denny Hamlin finished third, while Aric Almirola and Michael McDowell rounded out the top five.

It was a wild day on Monday that included three multi-car wrecks, ultimately involving all NASCAR Playoff drivers.

Alex Bowman finished 37th after trying to maintain the lead by blocking for his position against Joey Logano on Lap 108 of 188. The incident ended Bowman’s day as well as teammate Jimmie Johnson, and the No. 42 of Kyle Larson.

Credit: Courtney Horn for Skirts and Scuffs

“I threw a block that I shouldn’t have blocked.” Bowman said, “I knew the 22 was coming and tried to move down there, as soon as he touched me it went sideways.”

“I just didn’t do a good job of judging it. That’s on me.”

Clint Bowyer spun late in the race and managed to get his No. 14 Rush/Mobil Delvac Ford stuck on the apron of Turn 3. The Stewart Haas Racing driver finished 23rd, two laps down.

William Byron was leading the race on Lap 164 when Kurt Busch tapped him from behind. Byron went spinning into the outside wall, collecting Erik Jones, Daniel Suarez, and Matt Crafton, who was relieving for Paul Menard.

The “Big One” occurred on Lap 186, collecting 11 cars. It resulted in the No. 62 of Brendan Gaughan going airborne and flipping. He was able to exit his vehicle under his own power.

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads to Kansas Speedway on Sunday, October 20, 2019, where four drivers will be eliminated from advancing into the Round of 8.

Chase Elliott is 10th in the standings, despite finishing eighth at Talladega, four points below eighth place.  Clint Bowyer is 11th, six points behind, and William Byron is in 12th place.

Ryan Blaney is Victorious at Talladega Ryan Blaney is Victorious at Talladega Reviewed by Anonymous on Monday, October 14, 2019 Rating: 5