May 24, 2014, 6:20 PM EDT
It was the second NNS win of the season for Larson, who is also in his rookie season on the Sprint Cup Series.
“I love Charlotte and we’ll be trying to get a 600 win tomorrow,” Larson said of possibly doubling up Sunday in the Sprint Cup Coca-Cola 600 event.”
“It was nice looking in the rearview mirror seeing them get smaller and smaller on each lap.”
Larson led 82 laps in the 200-lap event, the most of any driver. His winning margin was nearly 1.5 seconds. It also was a great present for team owner Chip Ganassi, who celebrated his birthday Saturday.
Busch looked like he had the car to win, qualifying on the pole earlier in the day. However, he couldn’t get enough grip late in the race and couldn’t get to Larson as the final laps clicked off.
“We struggled real bad and came home with a third,” Busch said. “All things considered, we should be happy, but I’m here every time for a win.”
Matt Kenseth, who finished sixth, led the second-most number of laps (67), while Busch led 27 and Keselowski led 22.
“We were just off a little bit today,” Harvick said. “They (his team) tried and we just came up a little bit short today.”
It was a down day, however, for rookie NNS driver Chase Elliott, who suffered mechanical failure in his JR Motorsports Chevy and ended with a disappointing 37th-place finish out of the 40-driver field.
“It definitely was a bad day,” Elliott said.
Elliott also lost his lead in the NNS standings, dropping to third place, leaving him 28 points behind new series leader Regan Smith and 23 points behind second-ranked Elliott Sadler.
“We’ve dug ourselves a hole, so now we have to dig ourselves back out of it,” Elliott said.
Smith said of taking over the points lead, “I don’t want to discount it but also don’t want to put much stock into it still this early in the season.”
Follow me @JerryBonkowski
- NHRA: Anderson wins 4th of ’15, Stoffer over Sampey in 3rd all-female final in NHRA history; Kalitta, Beckman also win 0
- Ken Block seizes opportunity, wins Red Bull GRC at MCAS New River 0
- F1 Paddock Pass: British Grand Prix post-race (VIDEO) 0
- Emotional Hamilton tears up on last lap of British GP, thanks fans for support en route to win 0
- Hamilton weathers the storm to claim third British GP victory at Silverstone 1
- Hamilton storms to home pole position at British GP 3
- Hamilton closes out British GP practice fastest 0