Goodyear 400: William Byron Gets Third Win Of 2023 At Darlington On Throwback Weekend
DARLINGTON, S.C. - After multiple wrecks coming in the final laps of the Goodyear 400 at Darlington Raceway, William Byron's No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet took advantage of the late-race crash involving Ross Chastain and Kyle Larson to find Victory Lane for the third time this season.
Byron, who was two laps away from winning this particular race last year, brought his Jeff Gordon 50th Anniversary scheme across the finish line first during NASCAR's 75th Anniversary event. This win marks Byron's seventh career NASCAR Cup Series victory and the 100th overall victory for the No. 24 in Cup competition.
The win for Byron, however, came with a very heavy heart as the 25-year-old announced he recently lost his grandfather this past week in an emotional interview with Jamie Little from FOX Sports.
"Yeah, it’s pretty amazing, my granddad passed away on Thursday, and just man, I wish my family could be here," Byron said. "Definitely didn’t expect this, but just thankful for a great team, and yeah, just things have a way of working out, and come back here to Darlington and have it go exactly the other way."
In his final NASCAR Cup Series season, Kevin Harvick and the No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford had their best finish of the season by taking the runner-up position at Darlington.
Harvick, who has won at Darlington three times in his Cup career, said that his team kept him in the race despite the damage he received in on-track incidents.
"We had a good car all day, we just never could get up towards the front in our Sunny Delight Ford Mustang," Harvick said in a post-race interview. "Struggled in traffic today, but we were really good at the second half of the run and just struggled at the beginning of the run.
"But we had good track position, then had a bad pit stop under green, and then wound up having everything work out there at the end."
The end of the race looked like it was going to be a battle between Larson and Chastain. However, after three cautions in a 12-lap span, Chastain found himself in the wall during the eighth and final caution of the race, with Larson getting in the wall with him.
Both drivers were racing each other really aggressively leading up until the final caution as Chastain admitted after the race that he tried to force Larson up but unfortunately wrecked him in the process.
Other Race Facts
Martin Truex Jr. and his No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing team were arguably the most dominant car all race long before getting wrecked twice, finishing 31st after leading 145 laps and winning Stage 1.
Another Toyota driver that had a great day was the No. 23 of Bubba Wallace and 23XI Racing. After starting alongside Truex Jr. on the front row, Wallace led three laps and went on to finish fifth, which was his second straight top five. Now, Wallace jumps to 15th in the NASCAR Cup Series standings, which would earn him his first career appearance in the NASCAR Playoffs if he remains in that position.
In all three of William Byron's wins this year, he has earned at least 56 points in each race. Byron earned a perfect 60 points at Las Vegas, an almost perfect 59 points a race later at Phoenix and now 56 points at Darlington.
Byron also leads all drivers with three wins, six top-five finishes and six stage wins in 2023.
Results from the 2023 Goodyear 400 at Darlington are listed here.
The 2023 GRID Ranking is the seventh year of the premier motorsport ranking in the world and it was initially released on Sunday, April 2.
Drivers in the seven racing series participating in the ranking (NASCAR, IndyCar, Formula 1, Formula E, World Rally Championship, Repco Supercars, MotoGP) have earned GRID Ratings, which helped determine their seeding during Week 6 of the 2023 GRID Ranking.
NASCAR is still the only series to participate in each of the previous six weeks of the GRID Ranking. However, NASCAR does not have a driver inside the top 10.
MOST RECENT FINISH
Week 7 of the GRID Ranking:
The next race on the calendar for the NASCAR Cup Series is the All-Star Race at North Wilkesboro Speedway on Sunday, May 21. Coverage for the All-Star Open will kick off at 6 p.m. ET on FS1, while the NASCAR All-Star Race will begin at 8 p.m. ET on FS1.
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