Kevin Harvick held off a charging Kyle Busch in the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs race at Bristol Motor Speedway. It was a highly interesting battle between the two drivers who kept chasing and consistently grabbed the lead off one another. Eventually, Harvick won his ninth race of the season as Busch remains winless in 2020.
The last 40 laps were a show of skill and smartness under pressure from both drivers. In the final four laps, Busch kept the pressure on Harvick, but the No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing driver was just too strong at key moments on the night.
Before that, Harvick got caught up in traffic as Busch swiftly crossed him for the lead.
With under 33 laps to go, Harvick and Busch were again running in close quarters, this time with Joey Logano right on Busch’s tail. The three leaders were caught up in traffic of their own.
Kyle Busch had another look with less than 20 laps to go, as Kevin Harvick slipped a bit and went sideways as he almost hit the wall. Harvick survived there and held his balance and the lead.
After the race, Harvick spoke about the battle with Busch, and how difficult it is to hold him off at Bristol.
“To beat Kyle Busch at Bristol, I kind of got myself in a little bit of a ringer there. I hit a lapped car and got a hole in the right-front nose, but just kept fighting. We don’t have anything else to lose. We were here to try to win a race,” Harvick said after the race.
Harvick was ecstatic to win another race in front of fans. His win in the opening playoffs race at Darlington was also in front of a crowd. However, Bristol had a lot more fans in attendance.
Harvick, in the midst of a purple patch, also surpassed his career-best record for most wins. He had eight wins in the 2018 season. More importantly, Harvick is just one race win short of becoming just the second driver since Jimmie Johnson in 2007 to win 10 races in a season.