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Harvick Avoids The Big One, Wins A Big One

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Wow! What a finish, right?

How long is it before we fans grow numb to this sort of finish and disregard them as normal. Restrictor plate racing never ceases to shock and amaze and they've quickly became the fans' choice on the schedule.

Kevin Harvick, winner of the Coke Zero 400 has to agree. The win gives Happy his second victory of 2010 while also claiming a definitive stake in the championship hunt.

Harvick, now 212 points ahead of second place Jeff Gordon needs victories. Entering the Coke Zero 400, Harvick was 472 points ahead of the championship cutoff. And with nine races to go, Harvick needed wins to avoid a 40 point Loudon Championship deficit and took care of business on Saturday night.

With the win, Harvick has officially joined Jimmie Johnson, Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin as title favorites. Just 30 Chase points behind Johnson and Hamlin, Team 29 has to feel more than confident about their chances moving forward.

The 2.5-mile super speedway is scheduled for repaving in the fall, but took several race teams out with her in the Big One on lap 148. Eliminated from the race were Tony Stewart, Mark Martin. and Jimmie Johnson. In the end, 21 of 43 cars were collected and brought out the red flag with just over ten laps remaining.

One final accident occurred on lap 158 and set the stage for an overdrive finish and with one lap remaining, Harvick withstood a late charge from Gordon and Kasey Khane to complete the victory.

Top finishers and a championship rundown can be found after the jump.

TOP 10 FINISHERS

1) Kevin Harvick, Chevrolet

2) Kasey Kahne, Ford

3) Jeff Gordon, Chevrolet

4) Dale Earnhardt Jr., Chevrolet

5) Jeff Burton, Chevrolet

6) Carl Edwards, Ford

7) Kurt Busch, Dodge

8) Reed Sorenson, Toyota

9) Mike Bliss, Chevrolet

10) Scott Speed, Toyota

 

Championship Standings

1) Kevin Harvick, 2,884

2) Jeff Gordon, -212

3) Jimmie Johnson, -225

4) Kurt Busch, -245

5) Denny Hamlin, -284

6) Kyle Busch, -308

7) Matt Kenseth, -362

8) Jeff Burton, -365

9) Tony Stewart, -433

10) Greg Biffle, - 450

11) Dale Earnhardt Jr., -507

12) Carl Edwards, -514

 

Race to the Chase (Just Outside of Top 12)

13) Mark Martin, 2131 -553, 39 points out of the chase

14) Clint Bowyer, 2121 -563, -49

15) Ryan Newman [1 win], 2090 -594, -80

16) Kasey Kahne, 2016 -668, -154