Because the starting lineup for Sunday's NASCAR Cup Series race at Michigan featured an inversion of the top 20 finishers from Saturday's first leg of the doubleheader, Kevin Harvick was stuck in 20th to start the second leg. And yet the NASCAR Cup Series points leader was still the favorite to win Sunday's race at Michigan.
And with good reason. Harvick's No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Mustang was that much better than other cars throughout both races in the Saturday-Sunday twinbill. Harvick earned another win Sunday to complete the weekend sweep at Michigan.
Three wins at @MISpeedway in a row. Four out of the last five.— NASCAR on NBC (@NASCARonNBC) August 9, 2020
What a run for @StewartHaasRcng's @KevinHarvick. Hear from the driver of the No. 4 after his sixth win of 2020. pic.twitter.com/oMZDlfR70G
Denny Hamlin, whose five wins this season are now one fewer than Harvick's six, almost caught Harvick in the closing laps, but he ran out of time.
Sporting News tracked live race updates and lap-by-lap highlights from Sunday's NASCAR race at Michigan. Below are the results.
NASCAR at Michigan results
Harvick finished ahead of a trio of Joe Gibbs Racing drivers, but only Hamlin had the speed to even contend with the No. 4 car. Joey Logano rounded out the top five after his two Team Penske teammates Brad Keselowski and Ryan Blaney crashed together toward the beginning of Stage 3.
Below are the complete results from Sunday's race at Michigan.
|3.||Martin Truex Jr.|
|19.||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.|
|23.||John Hunter Nemechek|
NASCAR at Michigan highlights from Consumers Energy 400
6:58 p.m. ET: Kevin Harvick wins. What a race with Denny Hamlin in the closing lap. Harvick sweeps the Saturday-Sunday doubleheader at Michigan.
6:54 p.m. ET: With six laps to go, Kevin Harvick's lead over Denny Hamlin is shrinking to a few car lengths and less than half a second.
6:48 p.m. ET: Green flag. Restart with 15 laps to go. Kevin Harvick takes the lead, and he'll be tough to catch.
6:41 p.m. ET: Caution for debris from Alex Bowman's shredded tire. This should make things interesting with 19 laps to go.
6:40 p.m. ET: With 20 laps to go, Kevin Harvick still has a strong lead over Martin Truex Jr. and Denny Hamlin.
6:28 p.m. ET: Kevin Harvick runs down Aric Almirola and takes the lead with 40 laps to go.
6:23 p.m. ET: Green flag. Restart with 47 laps to go. Kevin Harvick gets back to the lead, but Aric Almirola takes it from him a lap into the run.
6:16 p.m. ET: Caution. Christopher Bell spins in Turns 1 and 2 thanks to a flat right rear tire, but he keeps it out of the wall. Clint Bowyer gets the free pass right after pitting for a flat tire.
6:14 p.m. ET: Green flag. Restart with 55 laps to go. Kevin Harvick pushes Denny Hamlin to the front and then takes the lead.
6:04 p.m. ET: Caution. Penkse-on-Penkse crime. Brad Keselowski goes low to try to take the lead from teammate Ryan Blaney in Turn 2, but he gets loose, slides up the track and collects Blaney. They both crash into the wall and are out for the rest of the race.
"It's unfortunate but it's not going to carry over. Mistakes happen."— NASCAR on NBC (@NASCARonNBC) August 9, 2020
Class from Ryan @Blaney, who got taken out in the accident with his @Team_Penske teammate Brad @Keselowski. pic.twitter.com/MclahAAozL
6 p.m. ET: Green flag. Restart to begin Stage 3 on Lap 92. Ryan Blaney shoves Denny Hamlin to the front and then takes the lead from him. Hamlin is stuck battling with Kevin Harvick for second.
5:56 p.m. ET: Kevin Harvick wins the race off pit road ahead of Kyle Busch and Brad Keselowski.
5:51 p.m. ET: Kevin Harvick wins Stage 2 with ease by roughly four seconds over Brad Keselowski. Both of the first two stages play out caution-free. Michael McDowell gets the free pass under caution.
Kevin Harvick wins Stage 2, his fifth stage win of the year. He also takes the lead in playoff points with 30 (eight of them so far this weekend).— Jeff Gluck (@jeff_gluck) August 9, 2020
Also getting stage points:
5:38 p.m. ET: Halfway through Stage 2, Kevin Harvick has a two-second lead over Brad Keselowski with Kyle Busch in third. The race is still caution-free.
5:27 p.m. ET: Green flag. Restart to begin Stage 2 on Lap 48. Kyle Busch and Kevin Harvick, who both take the top lane, shoot out to the front. Harvick eventually takes the lead.
5:20 p.m. ET: Kyle Busch wins the race off pit road with a blazing stop, and Kevin Harvick comes out second ahead of Clint Bowyer.
5:14 p.m. ET: Clint Bowyer wins Stage 1 after leading the entire segment, which goes green the entire way. Track position proves key, as Bowyer was never challenged for the lead after driving away from the start. Daniel Suarez gets the free pass under caution.
Clint Bowyer leads every lap and wins Stage 1. It's his third stage win of the year, so he has three playoff points.— Jeff Gluck (@jeff_gluck) August 9, 2020
10 key stage points for him. Also getting stage points:
5:02 p.m. ET: Halfway through Stage 1, Clint Bowyer has a comfortable lead over Christopher Bell with Matt DiBenedetto in third. Race favorite Kevin Harvick has worked his way up to ninth after starting 20th.
4:48 p.m. ET: Green flag. The Consumers Energy 400 at Michigan International Speedway is underway. Clint Bowyer eventually pulls ahead of William Byron to take the lead.
4:47 p.m. ET: Austin Dillon gets hit with a pass-through penalty for an unapproved adjustment on pit road before the race.
4:39 p.m. ET: Engines fired for the Consumers Energy 400.
12:15 p.m. ET: Chris Buescher (first), Tyler Reddick (third) and Aric Almirola (fifth) are among those giving up their starting positions by moving to backup cars for Sunday's race, as they will need to start from the back of the pack. This makes Clint Bowyer the new pole-sitter.
Cars going to the rear for the second Michigan Cup race:— Matt Weaver (@MattWeaverAW) August 9, 2020
Engine change - 15
Transmission change - 7
Backup Cars - 3, 6, 17, 34, 8, 10, 37, 38, 41
Driver change - 7