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Harvick gets Cup title shot with win at Texas | AP sports

07 November 2018

The playoff chase has gone from the half-mile paperclip-shaped track at Martinsville to the high-speed 1 1/2-mile Texas layout where polesitter Ryan Blaney qualified at more than 200 miles per hour, along with Bowyer.

It is the second year in a row that Harvick, the 2014 Cup champion, won the fall race at Texas to get into the final four. #12 Ryan Blaney captured the pole, and started out with the lead early in the race before #4 Kevin Harvick took command and didn't look back as he led 177 laps of the races 337 laps.

When asked about next Sunday's race in Phoenix Truex said, "I feel okay about where we are and feel like we're in decent shape going to Phoenix".

After Logano knocked him out of his first victory at a short track, Truex will try to get his first win at Texas, where he has 14 top-10 finishes and has led 595 laps - but never the last one. In the meanwhile, they got to the backstretch; Harvick had propelled his number 4 Stewart-Haas Ford in front of Blaney which ultimately led to the eighth victory of this season and 45th overall. "I've said my peace, told him what I thought and I'm here at Texas trying to win". "I am not going to let what happened last week take my focus off of that".

With Kevin Harvick and Joey Logano both locked in the title race through wins, Kyle Busch and Truex are in line to claim the final two positions by points. Kyle Busch and Martin Trueex Jr now hold the final two spots, but with Kurt Busch, Chase Elliott, Aric Almirola and Clint Bowyer hot on their tail the race at ISM Raceway in Phoenix could be very exciting. If I sailed off in there as fast as he did, I would have got loose, wrecked us both.

Other Notables: #2 Brad Keselowski P12, #88 Alex Bowman P14, #48 Jimmie Johnson P15, #24 William Byron P16, #18 Kyle Busch P17, #14 Clint Bowyer P26, #11 Denny Hamlin P30.

Kevin Harvick celebrates after winning the AAA Texas 500 and clinching a position in the NASCAR Championship 4. "He motored around me".

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Kevin Harvick has won at Texas to earn a shot at another NASCAR Cup championship.

Truex had to start at the rear of the field because of an engine change.

Championship contenders Martin Truex Jr. and Aric Almirola are moving up after having to start Sunday at the rear of the field for the NASCAR Cup race at Texas.

The final race in the Round of 8 is next Sunday Nov. 11 at ISM Raceway in Phoenix.

"The 42 (Larson) gave me a heck of a push, but I didn't quite get far enough ahead of the 4 into (Turn) 1", Blaney said.

A caution with 38 laps to go created an interesting kink in the pit strategy of many who debated whether or not to pit for tires and fuel, that being the looming question mark throughout Sunday's race. He had qualified 23rd for his 600th start with Chad Knaus as his crew chief.

Streaking away from pole victor Ryan Blaney during an overtime restart on Lap 336, Harvick won Sunday's AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway with the utmost of authority, sweeping the stages and leading a race-high 177 laps on the way to his series-best eighth victory of the season and a guaranteed spot in the November 18 Championship 4 race at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Harvick gets Cup title shot with win at Texas | AP sports