Quick take: Coca-Cola 600

Image by Kinrade/LAT

Quick take: Coca-Cola 600

Cup Series

Quick take: Coca-Cola 600


The only driver who could have beaten Kyle Busch Sunday was Kyle Busch.

The former series champion made no errors, however, and he won the 600 in fine fashion, taking all four stages and coasting to his fourth victory of the season.

Results | Standings

The win enabled Busch to complete a major section of his resume. Charlotte Motor Speedway was the only track on the Cup circuit where he had not won a point race.

Busch led 377 of the race’s 400 laps and was never seriously challenged at the front.


STAGE THREE – Kyle Busch easily won the race’s third stage, finishing a second in front of teammate Erik Jones.

BLANEY BLAZING – Ryan Blaney’s Ford burst into flames 20 laps from the end of the third stage, bringing out a caution. Blaney was not injured.

LARSON SLIDES IN TURN ONE – Kyle Larson, running fourth, lost control of his Chevrolet in turn one on lap 272, and his spin brought out the ninth caution. He avoided major damage and stayed on the lead lap.

YELLOW FOR BUESCHER – Chris Buescher caused the eighth caution of the race when a tire problem sent him into the wall on lap 258.

GAULDING SPINS – Gray Gaulding lost control of his car in turn four on lap 226 and spun off the frontstretch, causing the seventh caution.

SECOND STAGE – The race reached its halfway point at lap 200 with Busch winning the second stage. Following in the top 10 were Martin Truex Jr., Kyle Larson, Denny Hamlin, Clint Bowyer, Aric Almirola, Chase Elliott, Jimmie Johnson, Ryan Newman and Erik Jones.

JOHNSON, LOGANO SLIDE – A restart accident on lap 120 involved frontrunners Johnson and Joey Logano. Johnson slid through turn three after contact with Hamlin, and Logano also went into a slide trying to avoid traffic in the accident area. Both drivers continued on the lead lap.

STAGE ONE – Kyle Busch dominated the first of four stages, leading 94 of 100 laps and finishing the stage 1.2 seconds in front of second-place Ryan Blaney. Following in the top 10 were Larson, Truex Jr., Johnson, Almirola, Bowyer, Hamlin, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Erik Jones.

HARVICK RETIRES EARLY – A left front tire issue sent Kevin Harvick into the turn-four wall on lap 83, causing the second caution. Harvick had advanced from 39th place at race start to fourth. He parked, ending his shot at scoring a third consecutive win.

Harvick said he was off to the races before the problem. “The car was really, really fast,” he said. “We came all the way through the pack. I can’t complain about anything that’s happened this year. We have to take the good with the bad.”

DILLON CAUSES FIRST CAUTION – A blown right rear tire sent Austin Dillon into a slide on lap 37 and sparked the race’s first caution period.

FINALE OF A ‘TRIPLEHEADER’ – The 600’s green flag marked the start of the day’s last of three major races on the biggest motorsports day of the year. Daniel Ricciardo won the Monaco Grand Prix to start the day, and Will Power roared to his first Indianapolis 500 win at midday.

MILITARY SALUTE – Hundreds of military personnel participated in the speedway’s annual Memorial Day weekend salute to the armed services. Pre-race ceremonies included the arrival of military helicopters near pit road and service members unfolding two large U.S. flags during the national anthem.