MILLON DOLLAR MAN – Kyle Busch wins 2017 All-Star Race

(Photo Credit: SaJorden Miller / The SkyBoat)
Written by Adrian Beecher
Charlotte, NC- In his 12th career All-Star race, Kyle Busch captured his 1st ever NASCAR All-Star race victory jumping out to a lead on the final restart and winning the final ten lap shootout capturing the One Million Dollar Prize!

Kyle Larson in the #42 Target Toyota started on the pole with Kyle Busch in the #18 M&M’s Toyota on the outside. Larson jumped out to the early lead and had a 0.484-second lead after two laps.

Larson was able to maintain the lead, and with just four laps left in the 1st stage, Larson had extended his lead to 2 seconds out in front of Busch. As stage 1 came to an end, it was Larson maintaining his lead and winning the stage. This punched his ticket into the final round.

Larson won the battle off of pit road, while Matt Kenseth in the #20 DeWalt Benefiting Wounded Warrior Project Toyota had to end his night early as he sprung an oil leak. This left just 19 cars in the field for the 2nd stage.

With Larson out in front and Kevin Harvick in the #4 Busch Bucks Ford on the outside, stage two got under way. It took Jimmie Johnson in the #48 Lowes Chevy just 3 laps to find his way into 2nd place taking the option tires as he started to chase down Larson. However, the closest Johnson would get was .825 seconds behind Larson.

Winning the race off of pit road was Clint Bowyer in the #14 Haas Automation Ford as he took just two tires on the stop. Starting on the outside of him was Ryan Blaney in the #21 Motorcraft Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center Ford as he selected for a two-tire stop as well.

Blaney quickly passed by Bowyer, who started to fall quickly toward the back. Then it was Jimmie Johnson making the pass for the lead with just 17 laps to go in the stage. Johnson would hold on for the remainder of the stage and capture the stage 3 victory.

As the field was cut down to ten, final pit stops were taken. However, Brad Keselowski in the #2 Miller Lite Ford stayed out because he was out of tires. This allowed Keselowski to start the final 10 laps shootout in the front, with Jimmie Johnson on the outside. On the restart, Brad got loose with his older tires and dropped to the back quickly as Kyle Busch moved to the front as he made a move to the inside.

After the race, Kyle Busch spoke about the final pass he made to get out in front on the restart, “It was pretty cool once I got that opportunity to get there. I knew it was going to be now or never and take advantage of the opportunity once it presented itself.”

After taking the led it was a mad dash to the finish for Busch. Larson and Johnson battled for 2nd behind Busch, building the lead for Kyle. In the end, it was Kyle Busch taking his first Cup Series victory at Charlotte Motor Speedway and the One Million Dollar Prize.

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