CONCORD, N.C. -- Martin Truex claimed his Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season-leading sixth win of the 2017 season Sunday at Charlotte Motor Speedway when he took the checkered flag in the Bank of America 500.
"It was tough out there today; the car was a handful," Truex said. "Man, just thanks to my guys. We kept digging. The pit crew was flawless."
"We needed to be a little better, I think, in the middle stage and not lose so much track position," Elliott said. "That was where Martin came on and got his track position and we lost ours, and it was just hard to get all of it back, there, toward the end. It was a hard-fought day, and really, from where we were in those middle stages, I was proud of the way we fought back and were able to get back to the front. It's frustrating to run like this. We're definitely tired of running second, if we keep running like we are, hopefully, the opportunities will be there."
"That's about where we were gonna run, second or third," Harvick said. "We just kind of lost a little bit of the track there as the VHT started to wear off in the second half of the race. But they did a great job all day. For the most part, we had good stops all day -- just the timing of the bad one came at the end, but, for the most part, they did a great job. Everybody in the field had a bad stop at some point today, so it was a good day for our Jimmy John's/Busch Ford, and everybody is doing a good job with the speed of the cars."
Truex was the leader after the race's lone cycle of green-flag pit stops concluded on lap 234. Kyle Larson got by Kevin Harvick, who had dominated the race to that point, to take second a few laps later.
"They got us track position, and we were able to keep it. Just a never give-up attitude with these guys," Truex said "At this time of year, you want to click on all cylinders, and we just did everything right."
Larson, then, got off pit road first to restart the race as the leader with 64 laps remaining, but when the yellow flag waved again about 10 laps later, Truex was first of pit road to retake the lead. Larson wound up 11th for the restart after one of his crewmen slipped when servicing the car and Harvick was back up to second.
Larson also struggled on pit road early in the race when he missed his pit box and, as a result, had to make a second trip down pit road. At the checkered flag, he was 10th.
Harvick won both of the 90-lap stages that made up the first 180 laps of the 334-lap race. He ran second for most of the first half of the opening stage, first trailing pole sitter Denny Hamlin until a competition caution on lap 35, and then Chase Elliott after Elliott took the lead from Hamlin on the restart.
"For sure, I didn't see him (Bowyer)," Newman said. "I know I got tight underneath him and I washed up, but I checked up, and when you check up, sometimes you wash up even more, but nevertheless, I don't know if he turned me on purpose or not. He probably had a right to, but it was early in the race, and we had a good car. The Caterpillar Chevrolet was coming back through; we lost three spots on the pit stop, and that was rough, but we started passing some cars and just, either my mistake or his mistake, both of us going for the same piece of real estate off turn two."
McMurray and Kyle Busch beat Harvick off pit road during the caution at the end of the opening stage, and Busch took the lead on the restart. Harvick retook the lead on the next restart on lap 121 and ran up front for the remainder of the second stage.
Busch's car got loose and into the wall on lap 136. He scraped the wall, again, around lap 220 and a third time with 55 laps remaining. His first and third incidents resulted in cautions. Busch also was the reason for the ninth caution of the race that came in the final 10 laps.
Busch received medical attention after the race. He requested oxygen before the checkered flag, and when he was able to climb from his car postrace, he lied down in some artificial turf in the infield to recover from inhaling fumes.
NOTES: NASCAR moved the start of the Bank of America 500 up by an hour in an attempt to beat forecasted rain. ... Jimmie Johnson is an eight-time winner at Charlotte Motor Speedway, including the win of last year's Bank of America 500. ... Austin Dillon claimed his first-career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series win in the Coca-Cola 500 at Charlotte in May, the most recent Cup Series race at the track. ... Charlotte Motor Speedway is the only track on the current schedule at which Kyle Busch has yet to win a points-paying Cup Series race. ... Both practice sessions scheduled for Saturday were cancelled because of rain. ... Daniel Suarez dominated the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Charlotte on Saturday night before the race was won by Alex Bowman. Ryan Blaney and Austin Dillon finished in the top five in the Xfinity race, finishing third and fourth, respectively. ... Dale Earnhardt Jr. went to a backup car after a practice crash Friday. Other drivers, including Kyle Busch and Brad Keselowski, also damaged their cars in practice, but repairs were made to their primary cars. ... The 2018 playoff race, hosted by Charlotte Motor Speedway, will be run on the facilities infield road course.