Kyle Larson closed his comeback season in NASCAR with his first championship Sunday, where he capped his return from a nearly yearlong suspension with a title-winning victory at Phoenix Raceway.
Larson needed a flawless final pit stop from his Hendrick Motorsports crew to get the No. 5 Chevrolet back on track ahead of his three title rivals. His crew performed its second-fastest stop of the season – a span that stretches 38 races – and Larson went from last among the final four to first.
Larson controlled the restart with 25 laps remaining, quickly cleared Martin Truex Jr., then held off several of Truex’s challenges. There was no stopping Larson, just as he’s been impossible to stop all season, and he drove off to his 10th Cup victory of the year.
Truex, the 2017 champion, finished second and was followed by Denny Hamlin, his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate.