Brad Keselowski clinched his spot in the round of 12 of the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series playoffs with a dominant victory at Richmond Raceway in the Federated Auto Parts 400.
Team Penske’s Brad Keselowski became the second driver to clinch a spot in the round of 12 of the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series playoffs, and he did it by dominating the Federated Auto Parts 400, the second of three races of the round of 16 at Richmond Raceway.
Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick entered this 400-lap race around the four-turn, 0.75-mile (1.207-kilometer) oval in Richmond, Virginia as the only driver who had locked himself into the round of 12, as he won the playoff opener at Darlington Raceway last Sunday.
Keselowski started this race, which featured zero caution flag periods outside of the competition caution and the two stage breaks, in ninth place behind the wheel of his #2 Ford, and he led a race-high 192 laps en route to a 2.568-second victory over Joe Gibbs Racing’s Martin Truex Jr. in second behind the wheel of his #19 Toyota.
This victory is Keselowski’s fourth of the season, tying his highest win total in a single season since he won six races in 2014.
Team Penske’s Joey Logano finished in third place behind the wheel of his #22 Ford, and Richard Childress Racing’s Austin Dillon led Chevrolet for the second consecutive race with his second consecutive top four finish to open up the playoffs with a fourth place finish behind the wheel of his #3 Chevrolet. Hendrick Motorsports’ Chase Elliott rebounded from a late incident at Darlington Raceway to finish in fifth behind the wheel of his #9 Chevrolet at what was considered to be one of his worst race tracks.
Joe Gibbs Racing’s Kyle Busch finished in sixth place behind the wheel of his #18 Toyota ahead of Harvick in seventh behind the wheel of his #4 Ford.
Stewart-Haas Racing teammates Aric Almirola and Clint Bowyer were split by Hendrick Motorsports’ Alex Bowman to round out the remainder of the top 10. Almirola, Bowman and Bowyer are all above the round of 12 cut line following their eighth, ninth and 10th place finishes behind the wheels of their #10 Ford, #88 Chevrolet and #14 Ford, respectively.
Also clinching a spot in the round of 12 in this race was Joe Gibbs Racing’s Denny Hamlin. Based on his current point total following his 12th place finish, he cannot fall below the round of 12 cut line in the round of 16 finale at Bristol Motor Speedway next Saturday night no matter what happens in that race.
Hamlin won stage one before Keselowski won stage two. The race featured 19 lead changes among nine drivers, and the top 11 drivers finished on the lead lap. Of the 27 other drivers who competed in the race, only one failed to finish.
Here are the full race results of the 2020 Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond Raceway.
1st – Brad Keselowski
2nd – Martin Truex Jr.
3rd – Joey Logano
4th – Austin Dillon
5th – Chase Elliott
6th – Kyle Busch
7th – Kevin Harvick
8th – Aric Almirola
9th – Alex Bowman
10th – Clint Bowyer
11th – Tyler Reddick
12th – Denny Hamlin
13th – Kurt Busch
14th – Cole Custer
15th – Christopher Bell
16th – Matt Kenseth
17th – Matt DiBenedetto
18th – Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
19th – Ryan Blaney
20th – Ryan Preece
21st – William Byron
22nd – Erik Jones
23rd – Ryan Newman
24th – Chris Buescher
25th – Michael McDowell
26th – Bubba Wallace
27th – Corey LaJoie
28th – Ty Dillon
29th – Daniel Suarez
30th – John Hunter Nemechek
31st – Jimmie Johnson
32nd – Quin Houff
33rd – Brennan Poole
34th – J.J Yeley
35th – Joey Gase
36th – Reed Sorenson
37th – James Davison
38th – Timmy Hill
Here are the updated playoff standings among the 16 drivers competing for the 2020 championship following Keselowski’s win.
Rank – Driver: Points (Behind), (Wins/Playoff Points), (+/- cut line)
1st – Kevin Harvick: 2143 (0), (8 WINS/62 PP), (1 WIN)
2nd – Brad Keselowski: 2112 (-31), (4 WINS/35 PP), (1 WIN)
3rd – Denny Hamlin: 2122 (-21), (6 WINS/48 PP), (CLINCHED)
4th – Joey Logano: 2109 (-34), (2 WINS/22 PP), (+51)
5th – Martin Truex Jr.: 2096 (-47), (1 WIN/16 PP), (+38)
6th – Austin Dillon: 2094 (-49), (1 WIN/5 PP), (+36)
7th – Chase Elliott: 2086 (-57), (2 WINS/20 PP), (+28)
8th – Alex Bowman: 2085 (-58), (1 WIN/9 PP), (+27)
9th – Kyle Busch: 2076 (-67), (0 WINS/3 PP), (+18)
10th – Aric Almirola: 2065 (-78), (0 WINS/5 PP), (+7)
10th – Kurt Busch: 2065 (-78), (0 WINS/1 PP), (+7)
12th – Clint Bowyer: 2061 (-82), (0 WINS/4 PP), (+3)
————ROUND OF 12 CUT LINE————
13th – William Byron: 2058 (-85), (1 WIN/7 PP), (-3)
14th – Cole Custer: 2053 (-90), (1 WIN/5 PP), ( -8)
15th – Matt DiBenedetto: 2036 (-107), (0 WINS), (-25)
16th – Ryan Blaney: 2034 (-109), (1 WIN/13 PP), (-27)
The round of 16 of the four-round, 10-race 2020 NASCAR Cup Series playoffs is scheduled to conclude next Saturday, September 19 at Bristol Motor Speedway with the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race. The 29th race of the 36-race season is set to be broadcast live on NBC beginning at 7:30 p.m. ET.