NASCAR at Dover 2020 Results: Kevin Harvick Dominates to Earn 7th Win of SeasonAugust 23, 2020
Kevin Harvick guaranteed himself a first-place finish in the regular season as he captured the checkered flag in Sunday's Drydene 311 at Dover International Speedway.
Denny Hamlin's victory in Dover on Saturday brought him level for the most wins (six) in the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series season. Harvick didn't wait very long before edging ahead of him, simultaneously consolidating his place in the standings.
The 2014 series champion was dominant, winning the first two stages before coming out on top.
Drydene 311 Results
1. Kevin Harvick
2. Martin Truex Jr.
3. Jimmie Johnson
4. William Byron
5. Alex Bowman
6. Joey Logano
7. Aric Almirola
8. Brad Keselowski
9. Austin Dillon
10. Cole Custer
Full leaderboard available on NASCAR's official site
Harvick led the field for 223 of the race's 311 laps, a performance that adds to an impressive season to date. He praised the work of his team in his post-race interview.
Sunday's Drydene 311 was the penultimate race of the regular season. The playoff field will be cemented upon the conclusion of the Coke Zero Sugar 400 on Saturday at Daytona International Speedway.
Harvick's domination might have made for an anticlimactic finish, but the battle for the last few postseason spots made for plenty of drama on the track in Dover.
Entering the day, Jimmie Johnson sat in 16th place with only three points separating him from William Byron.
Sensing how valuable a win would be, Johnson and his pit crew gambled on what proved to be the final caution. The No. 48 car took two tires during a pit stop, which allowed him to move up the field a few places and into first with 17 laps remaining.
Johnson didn't get to enjoy the position for too long as Harvick almost immediately overtook him to pace the field.
The 44-year-old managed a third-place finish but could potentially miss out on the playoffs in his final season anyway. Byron collected 46 playoff points to 39 for Johnson. As a result, he now occupies the final postseason berth.
Sunday was a significant improvement for Byron, who was 28th in Saturday's Dover race.
Three places will be up for grabs after Aric Almirola, Kyle Busch and Kurt Busch assured themselves of a seat at the table in the round of 16.
Things could obviously change if Johnson, Erik Jones, Tyler Reddick or another surprise winner prevails this coming weekend at Daytona. Absent an upset, Clint Bowyer should be safe since he's 57 points up on Johnson.
Byron and Matt DiBenedetto are sitting a little more precariously. They can ill afford to make a mistake, lest they undo all their hard work in the regular season.