With a driver as younger and proficient as Kyle Larson, it was only a matter of time earlier than he gained once more.
However let’s not neglect what comes with that victory on Sunday at Dover: a spot within the Spherical of Eight and an ultra-valuable 5 additional playoff factors to assist him compete for a spot within the Championship 4.
If Larson can get to the Championship 4, it is a winner-take-all (or finest end takes all) battle amongst these 4 drivers at a observe the place Larson has proven his prowess. In 2016, he completed second, main practically half the laps. In 2017, he led greater than half the laps and completed third.
Nevertheless, that Dover win would possibly’ve been finest for Larson’s psyche. Subsequent week we’re at Talladega, the place not a lot separates a top-five end from a sub-30th end. Dover is way much less unstable than Talladega, and look what occurred to Joey Logano (entered fourth in factors, left tied for eighth) and Chase Elliott (sixth to 11th).
For now, nonetheless, let’s check out a few of the numbers surrounding Larson’s victory.
Second to none
Larson’s earlier victory got here in September 2017 at Richmond. Between that victory and Sunday, he completed second on 9 events, together with six instances final season.
That set a Cup Sequence report for essentially the most runner-up finishes between victories. The earlier report of eight was performed 5 instances:
• Kevin Harvick (2015)
• Jeff Gordon (2009-11)
• Jeremy Mayfield (2000-04)
• Bobby Allison (1970)
• Bobby Isaac (1968)
That 75-race winless streak between victories would possibly look like fairly a wait, nevertheless it’s nothing in comparison with that of Alex Bowman, who picked up his first profession win in his 133rd begin earlier this season. Aric Almirola went 149 races between victories, snapping the drought final 12 months within the playoff race at Talladega.
Late to the get together
Larson picked up his first win of the season within the 30th race, however latest historical past exhibits that we’re in all probability not completed with drivers getting their first victory of the season.
Within the earlier 10 seasons (2009-18), eight instances a driver has picked up his premiere victory of the 12 months within the 31st race or later. In 2018, it was the aforementioned Almirola win. In 2017, it was Matt Kenseth.
Or possibly this can be extra like 2013, when the ultimate six races had 4 drivers get their first victory of the season.
There are three playoff drivers who have not gained this 12 months who might nonetheless pull off the feat that Larson did: Clint Bowyer, William Byron and Ryan Blaney.
Joey Logano celebrates his victory within the 100th factors race to be held at Michigan Worldwide Speedway in June. AP Picture/Carlos Osorio
Hitting the century mark
It has been an enormous 12 months for centennial races. Sunday’s race at Dover was the 100th within the observe’s historical past, because the Monster Mile turned the 10th observe in collection historical past to host 100-plus factors races.
Unbelievably, three of these have taken place this season. Together with Larson and Dover, there was Joey Logano successful at Michigan and Chase Elliott at Talladega.
No driver has a number of wins within the 100th race at a observe. The others to win a observe’s 100th: Kyle Busch (Bristol), Kurt Busch (Atlanta), Jeff Burton (Charlotte), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Richmond), Jimmie Johnson (Darlington), Ricky Rudd (Martinsville) and Jeff Gordon (Daytona).
It’s going to be some time earlier than anyone has one other likelihood. Moreover the tracks above, the lively observe with most races hosted is Pocono, at 84. If the Difficult Triangle retains internet hosting two races a 12 months, we’ll get the 100th race in observe historical past in 2027.