NASCAR at Bristol live updates: Kyle Larson wins drama-filled Cup Series playoff race

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NASCAR’s Cup Series race at Bristol is tonight. The Bass Pro Shops Night Race starts at 7:30 p.m. on NBCSN.

The race is 266.5 miles (500 Laps) with stages ending on laps 125, 250 and 500. All times are Eastern.

Follow NASCAR reporter Alex Andrejev on Twitter at @AndrejevAlex.

Updates have concluded

Click here for a breakdown of who’s in, and who’s out of the playoffs as NASCAR made its cut to 12 drivers.

Final stage

11:02 p.m., Lap 500: Race over. Kyle Larson hangs on to win in a riveting final lap. Kevin Harvick takes second, Byron third, Blaney fourth and Bowman fifth.

10:52 p.m.: Lap 472: Chase Elliott has to pit after getting into Kevin Harvick battling for the lead in lapped traffic. Harvick now the leader, Larson in second. Kyle Busch and William Byron are the last two in the transfer spots for now, being chased by Almirola and Reddick, all within five points.

10:50 p.m., Lap 462: Kyle Busch has a flat tire, and his playoff position is in peril here as he drops as cars pass him while he’s pitting. Yikes! Pitting under green is going to cost him, maybe the playoffs.

10:46 p.m., Lap 453: Chase Elliott has now moved into the lead and has been one of the fastest cars all night. Kevin Harvick giving chase in second and Kyle Larson now in third. In the playoff chase, William Byron, running in fourth, has a one-point lead (unofficially) over Almirola for the final transfer spot.

10:30 p.m., Lap 402: Contact at the front and Hamlin blows a tire! He saves it mostly, but goes into the wall, and keeps his speed up enough to limp around into the pits, and the yellow flies.

10:25 p.m., Lap 398: Back under yellow for another solo car wreck. The field bunches and everyone makes their way to pit road. With 105 to go, Larson maintains the lead over Hamlin, with Harvick in third and now Alex Bowman and Chase Elliott battling in 4-5.

10:10 p.m., Lap 365: Yellow caution is out for a blown tire. Houff spins. Briscoe is the free pass. “I just don’t have the turn on exit,” Blaney says from P4 at the flag.

10:03 p.m., Lap 345: Aaaand there’s the pass. Kyle Larson has made his way back to the top and passes Harvick for the lead. Denny Hamlin has also cycled back to the front, in third position.

9:56 p.m., Lap 326: Kevin Harvick is back in front after Blaney drops back to second. Kyle Larson is back to third and is stalking the front, though with so much time and distance left, no one is really pushing yet. Chase Elliott has once again worked his way through the field aftr both a penalty and a bad pit stop. Elliott is in sixth.

9:46 p.m., Lap 277: Ryan Blaney now leading, and Harvick close behind. Christopher Bell makes his way into third. Long green-flag runs here will benefit fresher tires... which is NOT these three up front.

9:41 p.m., Lap 263: Kevin Harvick leads the field to green for the final stage, with four drivers facing elimination, and a handful more facing angry counterparts on the famed short track. Buckle up.

Stage 2

9:34 p.m., Lap 252: Kyle Larson takes Stage 2, Hamlin in second. Harvick with an important sixth-place finish in that stage for playoff purposes. The order to end that stage: Larson-Hamlin-Keselowski-Byron-Elliott-Harvick.

9:31 p.m., Lap 246: Larson takes the outside lane for the restart and stays out front. Hamlin, Keselowski follow. They’re on older tires, but are getting close to the end of the stage and another set of yellow flag stops.

9:26 p.m., Lap 230: Denny Hamlin chose to stay out. He’ll be on old tires for this restart

9:15 p.m., Lap 225: NASCAR has red flagged the race for track cleanup after last accident. Lap 225. Order is Larson, Hamlin, Harvick, Blaney, Keselowski in top five. Bowman in P16. Ku Busch P17. Almirola P23. McDowell P25.

9:05 p.m.: Caution out. McLeod into the wall. Kurt Busch, in P17, says “the vibration has just kind of plateaued.”

8:40: The 10 car has a ton of smoke coming from it. After a trip to pit road, there’s oil somewhere, and they’re trying hard to figure out where it’s from. The 10 loses a ton of position. UPDATE: An oil line was severed. They make the fix as the field goes to caution for a Ryan Newman wreck.

8:30 p.m.: Chase Elliott heads to the rear of the field after a penalty. Message from his team: “Just take care of it here; long night. Can’t throw it away.”

Stage 1

8:21 p.m., Lap 108: There are at least 16 cars running a lap down as Denny Hamlin continues to lead the field and the front of the pack gets caught by those in the bottom half.

8:18 p.m., Lap 91: Denny Hamlin moves up to second, then slides into first, passing Kyle Larson for the position. Chase Elliott has dropped to third and Brad Keselowski has found speed moving to fourth.

8:10 p.m., Lap 50: Joey Logano makes long pit stop and drops to the bottom-20, joining Kurt Busch as the playoff drivers in the bottom half. Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson lead off the restart.

8 p.m., Lap 40: At the competition caution, Chase Elliott leads, followed by Denny Hamlin, Kyle Larson, Brad Keselowski and Kevin Harvick in the top five. Elliott is the first car off pit road.

7:57, Lap 35: Kurt Busch is the lowest running playoff driver, mired in the bottom 20 with a loose car. Martin Truex Jr. is down to ninth. Chase Elliott continues to lead, and has lapped more than eight cars at his point.

7:49, Lap 10: Chase Elliott passes Martin Truex Jr. for the lead on Lap 7, sliding underneath him. Denny Hamlin, then Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick also pass Truex as he continues to run the high line and quickly dropping spots.

Pre-race

7:44 p.m.: The invocation, anthem, flyover and command are complete. Martin Truex Jr.’s longtime partner Sherry Pollex, a cancer survivor whose foundation is featured on his car tonight, gives the command to fire engines.

7:37 p.m.: During driver intros Kyle Busch gets the loudest boos, nearly tied with Joey Logano. Bu Busch embraced it. He put on sunglasses before walking out on stage and called to the crowd: “If you love ya some Rowdy, let me hear you BOOOO.”

6:50 p.m.: There were no multiple inspection failures in the Cup Series garage. The green flag is scheduled for 7:47 p.m. The sky is overcast and light rain has restarted, although cars sit covered on the grid. Martin Truex Jr. is on the pole tonight with Denny Hamlin in the front row.

6:05 p.m.: Scattered showers hit Bristol Motor Speedway a few hours leading up to the green flag. The track has issued a severe weather warning for fans in the area, but rain storms are expected to pass through, according to the AccuWeather.com Radar. There’s an eight percent chance of rain until 11 p.m., per the latest forecast on the site, with just light precipitation in the area.

How to watch NASCAR Cup race at Bristol

  • Race: Bass Pro Shops Night Race

  • When: Saturday, September 18

  • Time: 7:30 p.m. EST

  • TV: NBCSN

  • Radio: PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

  • Distance: 266.5 miles (500 Laps) with stages ending on laps 125, 250 and 500

NASCAR at Bristol Night Race Cup starting order

Order

Driver

Car No.

1

Martin Truex Jr.

19

2

Denny Hamlin

11

3

Joey Logano

22

4

Chase Elliott

9

5

Kyle Larson

5

6

Christopher Bell

20

7

Ryan Blaney

12

8

Kevin Harvick

4

9

Kyle Busch

18

10

Brad Keselowski

2

11

Alex Bowman

48

12

Aric Almirola

10

13

Tyler Reddick

8

14

William Byron

24

15

Kurt Busch

1

16

Michael McDowell

34

17

Ross Chastain

42

18

Austin Dillon

3

19

Matt DiBenedetto

21

20

Chase Briscoe

14

21

Daniel Suárez

99

22

Erik Jones

43

23

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

47

24

Ryan Newman

6

25

Chris Buescher

17

26

Cole Custer

41

27

Ryan Preece

37

28

Bubba Wallace

23

29

Justin Haley

77

30

Anthony Alfredo

38

31

Corey LaJoie

7

32

BJ McLeod

78

33

Josh Bilicki

52

34

Quin Houff

0

35

JJ Yeley

51

36

Garrett Smithley

53

37

James Davison

15

38

David Starr

66