At Talladega Superspeedway, anything can happen. Tell that to Denny Hamlin as he won the Aaron’s 499 on Sunday afternoon at Talladega Superspeedway. Hamlin won as a caution came out on the last lap for debris. A large piece of debris was found on the front stretch and NASCAR officials took their time and threw the caution flag on the last lap of the race. Once that happens, the field is frozen. Hamlin was able to secure the win.
Hamlin hadn’t raced in the front for much of the day. He took the lead for the first time on lap 33 but two laps later he lost the lead. He got shuffled back in the pack and with 25 laps to go he started challenging for the lead. After a big crash on lap 174, he came out challenging Kevin Harvick for the lead with three laps to go and got clean air. When a caution was called on the last lap after a large bumper was found on the front stretch, Hamlin came away with the win – his first of the season.
The first caution of the day came on lap 14 when Brad Keselowski thought he had cleared Danica Patrick as he attempted to make a move to the bottom line of racing and Keselowski’s left rear bumper tagged Patrick’s car which sent him spinning. He had a good save and drove the car expertly to avoid running into any other competitors. He wouldn’t be as lucky on lap 136 when he got loose and crashed, creating a multiple car pileup. In fact, 12 cars were involved which ended the day for Tony Stewart and others. Matt Kenseth’s car sustained heavy damage but he was able to continue on later in the race.
The other “big one” happened on lap 174 when Jimmie Johnson got loose and caught Joey Logano, Kurt Busch, Michael McDowell and last year’s winner David Ragan in the wreck.
Carl Edwards had tire trouble on lap 182 and spun around collecting Ryan Newman and Cole Whitt. That set up the restart with Kevin Harvick and Hamlin.
Greg Biffle hasn’t had the best luck this season, but he led the most laps in the race with 58. He ended up in the second spot on the day. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. also spent some time out front leading 26 laps. Joey Logano found success early in the race leading 25 laps, but his day ended early in a crash.
The top ten: Denny Hamlin, Greg Biffle, Clint Bowyer, Brian Vickers, AJ Allmendinger, Paul Menard, Kevin Harvick, Kasey Kahne, Kyle Larson, and Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.
Elliott Sadler was the winner of the Nationwide race on Saturday night at Talladega Superspeedway.
The next NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is Saturday, May 10 at 7:30 p.m. ET at Kansas Speedway. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will race Friday, May 9 at Kansas Speedway at 8:30 p.m. ET. The NASCAR Nationwide Series is off.