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A.J. Allmendinger wins first NASCAR road-course race at Indianapolis

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A.J. Allmendinger wins first NASCAR road-course race at Indianapolis
A.J. Allmendinger celebrates his victory at the Verizon 200 at the Brickyard on Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis. Photo by Edwin Locke/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 16 (UPI) -- Part-time Cup Series driver A.J. Allmendinger held off Ryan Blaney and Kyle Larson by 0.929 seconds to win the first NASCAR road-course race in the history of Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

"It's great when you have a car owner that just says, 'go get me trophies.' He doesn't care if that thing is torn up," Allmendinger told reporters Sunday in Indianapolis.

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Blaney finished second, followed by Larson, race favorite Chase Elliott and Matt DiBenedetto in the Verizon 200 at the Brickyard.

Kurt Busch, Erik Jones, Justin Haley, Austin Cindric and Ryan Newman rounded out the Top 10 finishers in the 24th race of the season.

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Larson, who led a race-high 28 laps, moved up to first in the Cup Series standings due to his third-place finish. He passed Denny Hamlin in the standings. Hamlin led for 27 laps Sunday, but was the victim of a spinout and finished 23rd.

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Sunday's race featured a several major wrecks before before Hamlin -- the race leader -- was spun out with two laps left. A pileup on the first overtime restart forced double overtime, with six cars eliminated due to the wreck.

William Byron led the first lap of the race. Chase Briscoe held the lead for lap Nos. 2 through 13. Tyler Reddick, Michael McDowell, Brad Keselowski, Elliott, Austin Dillon and Larson also held the lead early on. Reddick won the first two stages of the race.

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Hamlin, who led 27 laps, exchanged the lead with DiBenedetto and Larson down the stretch. Briscoe spun out Hamlin as he led the race with two laps left. Allmendinger then drove into the lead, which he held to secure his second career Cup Series victory.

"He went right in the back of me," Hamlin said of Briscoe. "We can't race that way. I don't think he did it maliciously. I've raced with him for a year now and he's not that kind of person. Just bad judgment."

The Cup Series season continues with the FireKeepers Casino 400 at 3 p.m. EDT Sunday at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Mich.

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