Kyle Larson Edges out Chase Elliott, Wins NASCAR at Michigan 2017

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJune 18, 2017

BROOKLYN, MI - JUNE 18:  Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Cars 3/Target Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series FireKeepers Casino 400 at Michigan International Speedway on June 18, 2017 in Brooklyn, Michigan.  (Photo by Sarah Crabill/Getty Images)
Sarah Crabill/Getty Images

Kyle Larson began in pole position, led the most laps and held on for the win at the 2017 FireKeepers Casino 400 on Sunday at Michigan International Speedway.

While he battled with Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Busch for the lead throughout the day, it was the No. 42 car that came away with the victory thanks to some excellent restarts down the stretch. Chase Elliott finished in second place.

This is the second win of the year for Larson in the Monster Energy series as he moves into the lead in the overall point standings, five ahead of Truex in second place.

Here are the final results from Michigan:

1. Kyle Larson (42)

2. Chase Elliott (24)

3. Joey Logano (22)

4. Denny Hamlin (11)

5. Jamie McMurray (1)

6. Martin Truex Jr. (78)

7. Kyle Busch (18)

8. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (17)

9. Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88)

10. Jimmie Johnson (48)

There were several cautions that affected the standings as the race came to a close. Drivers had to plan around the yellow flags, contemplating whether to pit and lose their positioning.

The restarts also became key, with Larson taking the lead in one of them:

He held the lead on the final restart with five laps left and pulled away for the win:

Larson entered the day on the pole after his win in qualifying, but Truex quickly took over and showed off his speed to win yet another stage.

As Fox NASCAR noted, his ninth stage win of the year was more than any other team so far in 2017:

This dominance continued on Stage 2, as Truex was once again the first across the finish line for his 10th win of the year.

Those following along are no longer surprised by his ability to rack up playoff points:

Truex got the points, although this was mainly a two-man race for most of the day. Noah Trister of the Associated Press noted how good he and Larson were compared to the rest of the field:

Kyle Busch then forced his way to the front after a quick pit stop in a race that appeared likely to come down to pit strategies, but several cautions slowed things down in the final few laps, creating a shootout situation down the stretch.

This crash with 10 laps remaining forced Danica Patrick into the wall:

Larson took control and led the final few laps, giving him 96 total for the day.

Elliott ended up in second place, a familiar spot for him at this course, per Nick DeGroot of Motorsport.com:

All the drivers will now need to adjust their tactics for the upcoming Toyota/Save Mart 350. Next Sunday's battle will take place at Sonoma Raceway, which is one of the rare road courses on the schedule. 

It will require some excellent driving to come away with a win at this event.