"It was just about a lot of track position," said Newman, who was in front for 125 of 400 laps in a race that featured 12 different leaders.
With seven laps remaining, Harvick was running second when he slammed into the turn 2 wall, ending his chance at victory.
It appeared that Rudd tapped Harvick's Chevrolet Monte Carlo from behind.
"It was a racing accident, it wasn't on purpose," Rudd said. "I'm not going to deny that I got into the back of him."
After the race, an angry Harvick had to be restrained from confronting Rudd.
2014: NFL Cheerleaders [PHOTOS]
Michael Sam cut from the Dallas Cowboys