Brickyard 400 gets underway Monday after weekend storms

Florence Fletcher
September 13, 2018

After a full weekend of racing was washed out due to relentless rainfall the Brickyard 400 was finally raced on Monday with Brad Keselowski earning his second win in a row to give Team Penske their first Brickyard 400 victory.

Keselowski's crew chief, Paul Wolfe, elected to pit Keselowski late in his final run as he was last among the leaders to hit pit road on lap 142 just before the caution flag waved a lap later for a large piece of debris on the frontstretch.

A crash involving Landon Cassill and Jeffrey Earnhardt late in the race led to a caution and restart with three laps remaining. The strategy left Keselowski with fresh tires a bit deep in the field and he began to work his way forward while Denny Hamlin began to streak away out front as the laps dwindled down.

Brad Keselowski celebrates after winning the NASCAR Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The other drivers competing for the championship: Kevin Harvick, Martin Truex Jr., Kurt Busch, Joey Logano, Bowyer, Kyle Larson, Hamlin, Ryan Blaney, Chase Elliott, Jones, Austin Dillon, Aric Almirola and Keselowski.

Hamlin's consolation prize will be joining Keselowski and Jones in the first round of the playoffs next week.

The final-regular season race before the playoffs ended with no change in the driver standings in terms of the playoff field, as all the drivers on the bubble hoping to race their way in with a victory fell short. Truex and the team won the Cup championship previous year and go into next week's playoffs trying to defend their title.

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Martin Truex Jr., the 2017 Cup champion who has won four races this season, will start the playoffs sans momentum. Dillon is seeded 11th and Larson is 12th.

Ford will have seven starters in the field, Chevrolet has five and Toyota has four.

That part certainly worked.

The green flag dropped a couple of minutes after 2 p.m. with Kyle Busch on the pole and Harvick of Stewart-Haas Racing lining up next to him.

What they didn't expect was three solid days of heavy rain, forcing a postponement of all track activity until Monday.

Inclement weather also canceled practice and qualifying for both series, meaning all drivers were scheduled to be driving around the historic 2.5-mile for the first and only time this week Monday. Allgaier won by 0.092 seconds.

Matt Kenseth of Roush Fenway Racing has won the second stage of the Brickyard 400. Chase Elliott of Hendrick Motorsports was second and Erik Jones of Joe Gibbs Racing was third.

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