Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. gets first NASCAR Cup win

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. has much to celebrate after the Geico 500 at Talladega: his first career Cup win and the first for Roush Fenway Racing in three years.

Getty Images

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. has much to celebrate after the Geico 500 at Talladega: his first career Cup win and the first for Roush Fenway Racing in three years.

TALLADEGA, Ala. — Ricky Stenhouse Jr. used a strong Ford engine to blow past Kyle Busch in overtime at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday for his first NASCAR Monster Energy Cup victory.

It was the first victory for Roush Fenway Racing since Carl Edwards at Sonoma in 2014. Stenhouse, who has led a resurgent Roush team, won the Geico 500 in his 158th Cup start. The victory makes him eligible for the All-Star race this month and likely a slot in NASCAR's playoffs.

He was greeted in victory lane first by car owner Jack Roush, then girlfriend Danica Patrick, who was in street clothes because she wrecked out of the race earlier.

"We've been terrible for a long time, but we've been getting better and better every race," said Stenhouse, who took time to note he "parked it" in victory lane for his late friend, Bryan Clauson, a well-known driver who died after a crash in a midget car race last year.

"It's good to have Jack Roush back in victory lane. It's been a long time since I've pulled into a victory lane. I had to ask Brad Keselowski how to start a race from the pole because it's been so long."

Stenhouse started from the pole and praised the power from his Doug Yates-built engine for the speed. Then he used that speed to snatch the race away with a last-lap pass of Busch.

The first two stages of the race were calm, and it was the final stretch to the checkered flag that got heated.

The race was stopped for nearly 27 minutes because of an accident that saw AJ Allmendinger's car flipped on its roof with 19 laps remaining. NASCAR listed 18 cars as sustaining damage in the accident.

When the red flag was lifted, many of those cars darted to pit road for frantic repairs under NASCAR's new five-minute rule. If a team can't fix its damage on pit road in five minutes, the car is ruled out of the race.

The race restarted with 15 laps remaining and Busch as the leader. There was a caution called with 10 laps remaining because Landon Cassill couldn't get his disabled car off the track. But no one had enough to catch Busch as the field was setting itself up for a frantic dash to the finish. Then Ryan Newman spun with three laps remaining to send the race into overtime.

Stenhouse got a push from Jamie McMurray around Busch and made it stick for the win.

McMurray finished second in a Chevrolet and was followed by Busch in a Toyota.

NHRA: Ron Capps raced to his third straight Funny Car victory, beating Tim Wilkerson in the Southern Nationals final at Commerce, Ga. Steve Torrence won in Top Fuel, Bo Butner in Pro Stock, and LE Tonglet in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. gets first NASCAR Cup win 05/07/17 [Last modified: Sunday, May 7, 2017 9:50pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. St. Petersburg's Sebastien Bourdais vows to return for IndyCar finale

    Auto racing

    INDIANAPOLIS — Sebastien Bourdais was in one of the best race cars he'd ever had, so fast that most of his competitors thought he would win the pole for the Indianapolis 500.

    Sebastien Bourdais does physical therapy at the Rehabilitation Hospital of Indiana in Indianapolis. Bourdais broke his pelvis, hip and two ribs in an accident during qualifying for the Indianapolis 500 on May 20. He plans to return home to St. Petersburg soon to continue therapy. [Associated Press]
  2. Yellow cards stall Rowdies offense in tie with St. Louis

    Soccer

    ST. PETERSBURG — It's not the result they wanted, but it certainly could have been worse. Neill Collins' 87th-minute header off a corner kick was the reward the Rowdies settled for Saturday night during a 1-1 draw with St. Louis before an announced 6,068 at Al Lang Stadium.

  3. Calvary Christian routs Pensacola Catholic to win state baseball title

    Baseballpreps

    FORT MYERS — Calvary Christian left no doubt as to which baseball team in Class 4A was the best in Florida this season. The Warriors defeated Pensacola Catholic 11-1 in six innings Saturday night at Hammond Stadium to claim the school's first state championship in any team sport. It also solidified a 30-0 season. …

    Matheu Nelson celebrates after scoring on a wild pitch during the first inning, when Calvary Christian took a 6-0 lead.
  4. Numerous lapses add up to frustrating Rays loss to Twins

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — While the Rays made some good defensive plays, threw a couple of big pitches when they needed to and got a few, and just a few, key hits, there were some obvious things they did wrong that led to them losing Saturday's game to the Twins 5-3:

    Rays reliever Tommy Hunter says the Twins’ tiebreaking homer came on a pitch that was “close to where I wanted it.”
  5. Rays journal: Steven Souza Jr. laughing right along after comical dive

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — Souza being Souza.

    That seemed to be the best way to describe the entertaining — and comically bad — dive Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. attempted in Friday's game, and the good humor he showed in handling the fallout, including a standing ovation his next at-bat from the …

    Twitter