Coca-Cola 600 results: Denny Hamlin survives overtime resume to win Wild War of Attrition in Charlotte

Concord, North Carolina -Of the 37 cars that started Round 63 of the Coca-Cola 600, the vast majority of them ended up either ripped, chewed up, spun or upside-down — Denny Hamlin included. Despite it all, it was Hamlin who brought home arguably the toughest edition of NASCAR’s longest running race ever.

Taking four fresh tires on his last stop heading into overtime, Denny Hamlin knocked out a four-sided battle for the lead in the first restart, then halted a charge from Kyle Busch in double overtime to win a Coca-Cola 600 for the first time in his career. With his victory, Hamlin became the 12th driver in NASCAR history to win all three of the sport’s major championships—the Daytona 500, Coca-Cola 600, and Southern 500—and he did so in what was the longest running race in NASCAR history at 413 laps and 619.5 miles.

Coca-Cola 600 unofficial results

  1. #11 – Denny Hamlin
  2. #18 – Kyle Bush
  3. #4 – Kevin Harvick
  4. #14 – Chase Briscoe
  5. #20 – Christopher Bell
  6. #8 – Tyler Riddick
  7. #47 – Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  8. #34 – Michael McDowell
  9. #5 – Kyle Larson
  10. #48 – Alex Bowman

the end

Toward the end of the 600 mile finish, the finish was shaping up to be a race between Kyle Larson and Chase Briscoe, with Briscoe running below Larson and making several attempts to pass Larson on the inside line. With two laps left, Briscoe tried to put a sledge post on Larson in the first turn, but the action didn’t stick and Briscoe ended up turning to take out the yellow flag.

The caution that followed split two strategies: Larson, Ross Chastain, Joey Logano and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. all took two tires, while Denny Hamlin put four tires in the back. The result was a massive swarm of cars charging forward upon restart. At the exit of Turn 4 of the white flag, Larson, Chastain, Hamlin and Austin Dillon were all leading the race four before Larson Dillon got stuck on the outside wall, causing a multi-car crash that doubled the overtime.

Coming out on the other side of the wide quad belt, Hamlin was able to fend off Kyle Busch in the last reboot to take the win.

600 miles of chaos

After off-season testing in Charlotte saw drivers on the edge of control in the next-generation car, there was an expectation that this year’s Coca-Cola 600 might feature a higher level of on-track movement and attrition as a result. These expectations are ultimately fulfilled in a race that is as tough for drivers and equipment as it was for the selling crowd who came to witness it.

The yellow flag flew 18 times, with several major accidents mixed between self-cycles and other issues. Drivers like Kyle Busch, Bubba Wallace, Chase Elliott and Larson all came out of their places at the front of the field. A dozen cars – including eventual winner Hamlin – accumulated in the second round upon restart.

But the most dramatic collision came with just over 50 laps remaining, as Daniel Suarez swerved sideways in front of traffic and collected the oncoming cars of Todd Gilliland and Chris Boecher. As the Buescher sprinted across the pitch area, it ended up taking off in the air and rolling more than five times before coming to rest on the surface. Boecher got out of his car and was unhurt.

In the end, this year’s Coca-Cola 600 took five hours, eight minutes, and 16 seconds to complete. It was the first time the race had taken more than five hours to complete since 2005, when the race was slowed down by a Cup Series record 22 alarms.

“The worst race of my life.”

If there was any driver who had to go through an epic journey to get to the finish, it was Kyle Larson. Larson had to start 36th after he practically hit a wall and didn’t score a qualifying lap, and walked across the field before countless problems. Two parts on a pit road, a pit road fire, contact with the wall, a 4 turn turn, and partridge in a pear tree.

Sometime before the race reaches halfway, Larsson mocked his team’s radio He had the “worst sweat of my life”. Shortly thereafter, Chief Crew Cliff Daniels rallied his driver with an exciting motivational speech.

“We’ve gone from back to front more times than I can count. We hit a wall, we went off, we got on fire. We were also the most sanctioned team on a pit road in the first half,” Daniels said. “It all means that in the second half we will start in a better way than we did in the first.

“We have to do the execution now. I don’t really know what the hell to worry about, but I’m fine, the team is fine, everyone here is nodding their head and thumbs up. Let’s go.”

Apparently, that verbal kick in the pants was exactly what Larson needed. He ended up leading three times in 51 laps, including several last laps before the end of regulation. Then Larson had to recover from a spin in the last big crash to do a good measure before heading home with a 10th in 9th.

Finishing order

  • With his 48th career win, Denny Hamlin is now tied with Hall of Famer Herb Thomas for 16th in the list of all-time wins in the Cup Series. With his next win, Hamlin will equal another Hall of Famer and one of his former teammates, Tony Stewart.
  • Despite another win error, Chase Briscoe was able to recover with a fourth place finish. It’s Briscoe’s first five spots since his first win of his career in Phoenix in March.
  • Despite falling off the wall calling pace late in the race, Christopher Bell was able to recover and finish fifth by the end of overtime. Bale caps a brilliant May, scoring four runs of sixth or better with an average finish in fifth.
  • With a seventh place finish, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. scored fourth in a row in a tenth place finish. Stenhouse’s current Top 10 streak is now the best of his career, breaking three straight streaks during the 2017 season.
  • Speaking of the stages of his career, Michael McDowell scored his fifth in his top 10 this year, equaling his career high last season. Four of McDowell’s top 10 cars have come in the last six races.
  • Harrison Burton was the top-ranked rookie at 11th, posting the best finish of his career and just losing his first 10 player ever.
  • Two of the drivers who have benefited from the significant level of attrition are Cody Weir and PJ McLeod. Ware posted his second best twenty in the last three races with an 18th place finish, while McLeod posted his best result of the season in 19th.
  • Despite the issues that resulted in him getting 13 laps at the end, Kaz Grala managed to be the last car to run in 23rd place. This is a small step for Floyd Mayweather’s The Money Team Racing, as it is their best result in their third race on the Launching in a cup.

Next race

The NASCAR Cup Series will meet everyone in St. Louis, as they head to the Gateway Global Tech Raceway for the first Cup Series race on the track, Enjoy Illinois 300 on Sunday, June 5.