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Newman skips tire change to snap losing streak

Ryan Newman is cooled down with ice in victory lane after winning in Arizona where temperatures reached 97 degrees.

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Ryan Newman is cooled down with ice in victory lane after winning in Arizona where temperatures reached 97 degrees.

AVONDALE, Ariz. — Ryan Newman gambled and skipped a tire-changing pit stop to move from seventh place to the lead and held on for the final two laps for a surprise victory in Sunday's Camping World 500.

The 39-year-old Newman, who broke a 127-race winless streak, held off Kyle Larson, the second-place finisher for the third straight Monster Energy NASCAR Cup race.

Kyle Busch was third on a day when the temperature soared to 97 degrees at Phoenix International Raceway.

Like nearly all the rest of the field, Larson and Busch went to the pits on the late caution caused when Joey Logano's car blew a right tire and slammed into the wall with six laps left.

"Just a heck of a gutsy call by (crew chief) Luke (Lambert). I called for two tires, and he called for none,'' Newman said. "I've won more races with no tires than I have with four. I'm just proud of these guys. We had a good car all day. We kept it out of trouble and collected in the end."

Newman, in his first win since the 2013 Brickyard 400, gave Chevrolet its first victory of the season and ended a 112-race losing streak for Richard Childress Racing.

Once again, Logano's misfortune foiled Busch. Last week Logano's car knocked Busch's into the wall on the final stretch in Las Vegas. That led Busch to storm down pit row and throw a punch at Logano.

On Sunday, Busch took the lead with a quick pit stop during a caution flag and led for 113 laps before heading to the pits after Logano's crash.

NHRA: John Force won Funny Car at the Gatornationals for the first time since 2001, doing so on the 10th anniversary of the death of his driver Eric Medlen. Medlen crashed during practice at Gainesville Raceway in 2007 and died four days later at 33. "I know he was in my heart all day," said Force, whose winning time was 3.928 seconds. Tony Schumacher (3.703) edged Antron Brown (3.764) to win Top Fuel. Shane Gray (6.535) won Pro Stock and Eddie Krawiec (6.762) won Pro Stock Motorcycle.

Taylors tame Sebring

Ricky Taylor guided the Wayne Taylor Racing team late Saturday to its first 12 Hours of Sebring win. Taylor credited a pass younger brother and teammate Jordan Taylor made on Filipe Albuquerque to take the lead as the move of the race. Ricky Taylor was the closing driver two months ago when the team won IMSA's season-opening Rolex 24 at Daytona. In that race, Taylor bumped Albuquerque with just seven minutes left, causing that car to spin out. "I really wanted this race win to be conventional," Ricky Taylor said. "This was a dominant win, so nobody can question it." P-class Cadillacs finished 1-2-3 with Joao Barbosa 13.614 seconds behind the Taylors and Dane Cameron finishing third. St. Petersburg resident and Grand Prix of St. Petersburg winner Sebastien Bourdais raced with teammates Joey Hand and Dirk Muller in the GT LeMans class, finishing 14 laps back.

Monster Energy NASCAR Cup points

Through 4 of 36 races, including Sunday's race at Avondale, Ariz.

Points Back

1. Kyle Larson 184—

2. Brad Keselowski178 6

3. Chase Elliott 171 13

4. Martin Truex Jr. 153 31

5. Joey Logano 135 49

6. Ryan Blaney 127 57

7. Kevin Harvick 123 61

8. Jaime McMurray119 65

9. Kurt Busch 105 79

10. Kasey Kahne 105 79

11. Ryan Newman 101 83

12. Trevor Bayne 100 84

13. Clint Bowyer 97 87

14. Kyle Busch 97 87

15. Denny Hamlin 97 87

16. Jimmie Johnson93 91

Newman skips tire change to snap losing streak 03/19/17 [Last modified: Monday, March 20, 2017 11:10am]
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