NASCAR at Richmond live updates: Alex Bowman steals a win on a late restart

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Alex Andrejev
·16 min read
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Live updates for this event have concluded. A race recap and full analysis will be posted here.

The NASCAR Cup Series raced today at Richmond Raceway, a 0.75-mile oval in Richmond, Va. The Toyota Owners 400 started at 3 p.m. on FOX, and finished at 6:23, with Alex Bowman in front after a surprising late run.

The race was 400 laps (300 miles) with stages ending on laps 80, 235 and 400. Last weekend’s Martinsville winner Martin Truex Jr. was on the pole with Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Denny Hamlin in the front row when the race went green.

Check back here for live updates throughout the race and follow NASCAR reporter Alex Andrejev on Twitter at @AndrejevAlex.

Race results

Pos.

Car

Driver

Time Behind

Laps

Best Time

Best Speed

1

48

Alex Bowman

--

400

22.76

118.629

2

11

Denny Hamlin

0.381

400

22.358

120.762

3

22

Joey Logano

0.85

400

22.61

119.416

4

20

Christopher Bell

2.11

400

22.913

117.837

5

19

Martin Truex Jr.

2.575

400

22.499

120.005

6

10

Aric Almirola

3.155

400

23.032

117.228

7

24

William Byron

3.812

400

22.878

118.017

8

18

Kyle Busch

3.984

400

22.929

117.755

9

21

Matt DiBenedetto

17.869

400

22.977

117.509

10

3

Austin Dillon

20.145

400

23.047

117.152

11

12

Ryan Blaney

20.491

400

22.672

119.09

12

9

Chase Elliott

20.751

400

22.546

119.755

13

1

Kurt Busch

20.796

400

23.098

116.893

14

2

Brad Keselowski

22.259

400

22.924

117.78

15

42

Ross Chastain

-1

399

22.974

117.524

16

99

Daniel Suarez

-1

399

23.022

117.279

17

47

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

-1

399

23.195

116.404

18

5

Kyle Larson

-2

398

22.76

118.629

19

43

Erik Jones

-2

398

23.225

116.254

20

8

Tyler Reddick

-2

398

23.025

117.264

21

7

Corey LaJoie

-2

398

23.079

116.989

22

14

Chase Briscoe #

-2

398

23.09

116.934

23

41

Cole Custer

-2

398

23.222

116.269

24

4

Kevin Harvick

-3

397

22.758

118.64

25

17

Chris Buescher

-3

397

23.059

117.091

26

23

Bubba Wallace

-3

397

23.12

116.782

27

34

Michael McDowell

-4

396

23.131

116.726

28

33

* Austin Cindric(i)

-4

396

22.957

117.611

29

37

* Ryan Preece

-4

396

23.163

116.565

30

6

Ryan Newman

-5

395

23.096

116.903

31

38

Anthony Alfredo #

-5

395

23.373

115.518

32

78

BJ McLeod(i)

-7

393

23.437

115.202

33

15

James Davison

-10

390

23.649

114.17

34

0

Quin Houff

-10

390

23.473

115.026

35

53

Garrett Smithley(i)

-11

389

23.447

115.153

36

51

Cody Ware(i)

-15

385

23.51

114.845

37

52

Josh Bilicki

-16

384

23.63

114.262

38

77

Justin Haley(i)

-399

1

54.944

49.141

Race updates

Final stage

6:23 p.m., Lap 400: Buoyed by an amazing restart with 12 to go, Alex Bowman took command of the race in the final 10 laps. Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano tried to catch back up but they couldn’t. After Hamlin and Logano led the entire way, Bowman surprises everyone with that late pass and wins the race at Richmond!

6:21 p.m., Lap 393: Alex Bowman has made a great pass on the restart and has stated to pull away from Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano. Bowman has a 3/4-second lead.

6:18 p.m., Lap 388: Back to green, and on the restart, Hamlin changes to the inside lane, and Logano will restart on the outside. Bowman and Bell on Row 2, Almirola and Byron on Row 3, Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Busch on Row 4.

6:14 p.m., Lap 384: With 18 and counting laps to go, the leaders are going to pit for the final sprint! Joey Logano continues to lead Denny Hamlin onto pit road, but this brought sixth-place Truex back into striking distance. And Denny Hamlin wins the race off pit road. He retakes the lead!

6:13 p.m., Lap 383: Caution is out! This will make things interesting, for sure. Joey Logano was holding off Denny Hamlin for second, but this will bring all of the other cars within a couple of second of the front — including Martin Truex Jr.

6:10 p.m., Lap 381: Joey Logano and Denny Hamlin just cruised past DiBenedetto to put the ninth-place car a lap down. And again to Kyle Busch. Only seven cars on the lead lap.

6:07 p.m., Lap 371: Joey Logano comes up on some lapped traffic (ninth-place Matt DiBenedetto) and Denny Hamlin is right up on his bumper.

6:04 p.m., Lap 364: Hamlin seems to have found whatever was missing when Logano passed him by, and is now back to challenging for the lead. Neither driver is in danger from behind in third place at the moment. Martin Truex Jr. has made it back to eighth, and is slowly eating up some of the deficit he faces, but the distance is too great, unless there’s a caution.

5:59 p.m., Lap 352: With his pass-through penalty, Kyle Busch has now gone a lap down. There are now just NINE cars on the lead lap. Joey Logano leads after the stops, Denny Hamlin in second about 1.6 seconds back. After that, there is a 10-second gap back to third position (Bell) and two more seconds to fourth (Bowman).

5:56 p.m., Lap 346: Cars on the lead lap are pitting. Bell, DiBenedetto, Logano all into the pits. Hamlin, Blaney follow suit. Truex Jr. has stayed out for an extra lap, but then comes in. Kyle Busch came into the pits hot, and will have to do a pass-through penalty, as well.

5:52 p.m., Lap 335: And there goes the lead for Hamlin! Joey Logano gets to the inside and nudges past Hamlin for the lead. A reminder, too ... Denny Hamlin is bidding to become the first driver this season to win Stages 1 and 2, and also win the race.

5:49 p.m., Lap 329: And Martin Truex Jr., after serving a pass-through penalty for speeding on pit road, is back in the Top 10 after passing Austin Dillon and Chase Elliott. Still 20 second back of the leader Denny Hamlin, but some cars are starting to gain on Hamlin. Joey Logano, in second, has gained a full second on Hamlin in the past 5 laps.

5:45 p.m., Lap 318: 12 cars on the lead lap, with Truex Jr. starting tp pick off lesser cars on the lead lap. The last one at 22 seconds back is Chase Elliott now.. Brad Keselowski, after his major (ill-advised) gamble earlier, remains the lucky dog car one lap down.

5:43 p.m., Lap 312: Denny Hamlin still in front and Truex has managed not to go a lap down, but now has a whole track to make up on Hamlin. The lead now is about 1.5 seconds over Joey Logano, then there is a generous gap to Kyle Busch and Kevin Harvick in 3-4.

5:37 p.m., Lap 298: Big penalty! Martin Truex Jr. gets a speeding penalty on pit road and has to serve a pass through. He drops from second place and reemerges on the track just ahead of Denny Hamlin leading. He’s trying to stay on the lead lap and make up the deficit, as Hamlin is keeping two seconds between him and Joey Logano, now in second.

5:34 p.m., Lap 292: Green flag pit stops have started, with drivers Austin Dillon, Kyle Larson and others on pit-road, followed shortly after by the race leaders.

5:25 p.m., Lap 270: The running order remains the same as Denny Hamlin leads Joey Logano, who has settled into 0.7 seconds behind the leader. Matt DiBenedetto has also had a solid day and is running in sixth, along with Aric Almirola in eighth.

5:17 p.m., Lap 250: Denny Hamlin leads the field on the outside for the restart with Martin Truex Jr. in second. Joey Logano gets out to a quick second place. Before the restart, a penalty for Alex Bowman for an uncontrolled tire during the caution sends him to the back of the field. Kyle Busch has worked into the top-five, in fourth, as Christopher Bell runs in seventh for a strong start to the final stage by the JGR cars.

Stage 2

5:07 p.m., Lap 235: Denny Hamlin wins Stage 2, sweeping the opening stages. He’s led 109 laps so far. Martin Truex Jr. finishes the stage in second (106 laps led). Joey Logano in third. Keselowski finishes the stage in 15th, an off the lead lap: “That’s not how that was supposed to go,” says crew chief Jeremy Bullins on the No. 2 radio. Keselowski replies that they’ll try to get it back in the final stage. We’ll see if the tire strategy pays off. Alex Bowman, Kevin Harvick, Matt DiBenedetto, Kyle Busch, William Byron, Christopher Bell and Aric Almirola round out the top-10 for stage points.

5 p.m., Lap 223: Brad Keselowski has now fallen out of the top-five behind (in leading running order) Denny Hamlin, Martin Truex Jr., Joey Logano, Alex Bowman and Kevin Harvick. Keselowski’s teammate Ryan Blaney, who is also on the tire strategy Keselowski is running, is a lap down in 18th.

4:55 p.m., Lap 215: With just under 30 laps left in the stage, Denny Hamlin re-takes the lead, followed shortly by Martin Truex Jr. in second. Brad Keselowski then drops to fourth behind Joey Logano as he tries to hold on for points through the stage while on older tires.

4:51 p.m., Lap 205: Brad Keselowski’s crew chief Jeremy Bullins tells the No. 2 driver the team is “not going to hold ‘em off for the stage win, but we’ll have an extra set of tires for the final stage.” They’re playing the long-term strategy. Denny Hamlin, in second, is now running under a second behind Keselowski.

4:44 p.m. Lap 185: The leaders pit, after each report adjustments that need to be made. No leading driver seems content with their balance right now. Brad Keselowski and Christopher Bell stay out as those in front pit, so Keselowski inherits the lead. The team plans to hold off on pitting until after the stage if they’re able to keep the lead. The running order is Keselowski, Denny Hamlin, Martin Truex Jr., Joey Logano and Ryan Blaney in the top-five.

4:39 p.m., Lap 174: Joey Logano has passed his Penske teammate Brad Keselowski for fourth, then works by Kevin Harvick for third. Denny Hamlin continues to run a second behind teammate Martin Truex Jr. Meanwhile the RCR cars are having a strong day with Tyler Reddick, Daniel Suárez (whose No. 99 car is prepared in the RCR shop) and Austin Dillon running in P8-P10.

4:30 p.m., Lap 150: The top five after the restart are Martin Truex Jr, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano. Kyle Larson is caught a lap down.

4:24 p.m., Lap 140: The field goes three-wide with Ryan Newman, Austin Cindric and Kyle Larson. Cindric and Newman make contact going wide around Larson, and Newman goes for a spin in Turn 3 to bring out the first caution for incident. The beneficiaries are Brad Keselowski, Austin Dillon, Matt DiBenedetto and Tyler Reddick, Corey LaJoie and Daniel Suárez, who hadn’t yet pitted. Martin Truex Jr. leads the field on the restart on Lap 147.

4:18 p.m., Lap 130: Denny Hamlin is continues to make gains on leader Martin Truex Jr. as he hits lapped traffic. The running order in the top-five remains the same with Joey Logano, Alex Bowman and Kevin Harvick in pursuit. Christopher Bell and William Byron follow a tick behind them.

4:10 p.m., Lap 105: Martin Truex Jr. gets around Denny Hamlin on Lap 104 just after Kevin Harvick passes Ryan Blaney to enter the top-five. The running order is Truex, Hamlin, Joey Logano, Alex Bowman and Harvick. Bowman is closely following Logano and is working to make his pass. Earlier in the race, he was told on his radio that he was the fastest running car.

4:05 p.m., Lap 95: Denny Hamlin leads the field to green and holds his spot, but Martin Truex Jr. is on his tail and 0.4-seconds behind. Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott are still running out of the top-10, but Kyle Busch, who was also struggling earlier, is up to eighth. Kevin Harvick is trying to make a run into the top-five. He’s in sixth behind Ryan Blaney in fifth.

Stage 1

3:49 p.m., Lap 80: Denny Hamlin wins the first stage after leading all laps after the competition caution. Martin Truex Jr. finishes in second, passing Joey Logano just before the yellow flag. Rounding out the top-10 is William Byron, Ryan Blaney, Christopher Bell, Alex Bowman, Austin Dillon, Brad Keselowski and Kevin Harvick. Chase Elliott finishes the stage in 17th after running fifth following the competition caution. His team plans to revert to its earlier setup at the stage break, as Elliott reports he’s “tight really bad across the middle.”

3:43 p.m., Lap 60: Kyle Larson is also struggling as the lowest-running Hendrick Motorsports car. He drops out of the top-20, and reports that his “drive is awful” after earlier adjustments to try to fix his setup. Hendrick teammates William Byron (fourth), Alex Bowman (10th) and Chase Elliott (11th) are running ahead of Larson. Denny Hamlin is leading with Joey Logano in second. Martin Truex Jr. is in third.

3:38 p.m., Lap 50: Kyle Busch is lowest-running JGR car. “I’ll take any f***ing suggestions I can get,” Busch says from 14th. Denny Hamlin continues to lead with Martin Truex Jr. in third and Christopher Bell in sixth.

3:30 p.m., Lap 30: Denny Hamlin takes the first place spot from Martin Truex Jr. in the race off pit road. There was a half-second difference between the two Gibbs teammates at the competition caution. Daniel Suárez will restart at the rear for an uncontrolled tire penalty. Hamlin chooses the outside lane for the restart and holds his lead as Logano takes second place from Truex after the restart.

3:25 p.m., Lap 25: Justin Haley’s car appears to have an electric issue. He pits within the first 10 laps and his No. 77 is rolled to the garage for further inspection, but says he thinks their day is done. Martin Truex Jr. continues to lead with Denny Hamlin just behind him, and Joey Logano in third. Austin Dillon in eighth place tells his team he’s a “little free” as the competition caution comes out on Lap 30.

3:18 p.m., Lap 5: Martin Truex Jr. shoots out to an early lead, followed by Chase Elliott, but second place starter Denny Hamlin climbs back to the No. 2 spot by Lap 5 after a slow start. The running order is Truex, Hamlin, Elliott, then Joey Logano and Ryan Blaney in the top-five.

Pre-race

3:10 p.m.: Engines are fired for the 300-miler. There will be a competition caution on Lap 30 and the first stage break will be on Lap 80. Cars are rolling off the grid.

3 p.m: Country music artist Alana Springsteen performs a recorded version of the national anthem. VIP customer of Mechanicsville Toyota Todd Thompson delivers the command to start engines virtually.

2:50 p.m.: Driver introductions are underway. Drivers Kyle Busch and Joey Logano receive the loudest boos, but driver Bubba Wallace and Virginia governor Ralph Northam are a close second. Before introductions, a video of Northam welcoming fans back was played at the track and met with boos from the partially-full stands.

2:45 p.m.: Race fans have filed into the grandstands at Richmond Raceway ahead of the Toyota Owners 400. State regulations are allowing limited fan attendance, which marks a change since no fans were permitted for last year’s Cup playoff race at the Virginia track in September. According to WTKR, an estimated 10,000 fans are expected at the track Sunday, which is less than the 30 percent capacity permitted by state regulations. The pleasant weather near Richmond, Va. is also likely boosting fan turnout after rain recently hit tracks hosting NASCAR events. The last two Cup races, at Martinsville and Bristol, were impacted by weather and forced postponements of both events. But it appears today’s race will kick off and be completed as scheduled with no rain (just some clouds) in the sky.

No pre-race inspection failures

2 p.m.: NASCAR announces ahead of today’s race that there were no multi-time inspection failures during pre-race technical inspection. That means that no one is dropping to the rear, an hour ahead of the scheduled start time. Martin Truex Jr. is slated to start on the pole for the latest short-track race. He won last weekend’s race at Martinsville and is the only two-time race winner this season after also taking the checkered flag earlier this year at Phoenix.

How to watch: NASCAR Cup race at Richmond

  • Race: Toyota Owners 400

  • When: Sunday, April 18 at 3 p.m. EST

  • How to watch/listen: FOX, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

  • Distance: 400 laps, 300 miles on the 0.75-mile oval

  • Stages: Laps 80, 235, 400

NASCAR Cup race at Richmond starting lineup

Order

Driver

Car No.

1

Martin Truex Jr.

19

2

Denny Hamlin

11

3

Chase Elliott

9

4

William Byron

24

5

Joey Logano

22

6

Kyle Larson

5

7

Ryan Blaney

12

8

Christopher Bell

20

9

Kevin Harvick

4

10

Kyle Busch

18

11

Austin Dillon

3

12

Chris Buescher

17

13

Tyler Reddick

8

14

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

47

15

Bubba Wallace

23

16

Matt DiBenedetto

21

17

Kurt Busch

1

18

Ross Chastain

42

19

Ryan Newman

6

20

Brad Keselowski

2

21

Cole Custer

41

22

Aric Almirola

10

23

Michael McDowell

34

24

Alex Bowman

48

25

Ryan Preece

37

26

Chase Briscoe

14

27

Daniel Suárez

99

28

James Davison

15

29

Anthony Alfredo

38

30

Erik Jones

43

31

Josh Bilicki

52

32

Quin Houff

0

33

Cody Ware

51

34

Justin Haley

77

35

BJ McLeod

78

36

Corey LaJoie

7

37

Garrett Smithley

53

38

Austin Cindric

33