William Byron Wins At Vegas, Captures First Win Of The Year (3-5-23)

By: Becca Cottingham Quimby

Headline Photo Credit: USA Today

We head to the second race of our West coast swing with Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Joey Logano will bring us to the green flag and it does not take long before William Byron takes over the lead. Kyle Busch will be the first victim of drivers pushing upward to the top of the track. He will tag the wall. This will do some damage to the car but it is minimal, the biggest concern is the toe link on the car. Ryan Blaney will kick off green flag pit stops for everyone. Noah Gragson has huge issues with back-to-back speeding penalties on pit road. Clouds did move in and that also can be playing a part in the tightness of some of the cars on the track as well so many drivers will be wanting adjustments. The winds and clouds will be causing a lot of issues. William Byron will keep the lead through the green flag, then pit stops with his teammate right behind him. He kept a good distance between himself and Kyle Larson and William Byron won stage one.

We head into stage two and it looked like Denny Hamlin was going to make a huge move to the front. He did not make it to the front as he wanted to. We do see an early stop by Noah Gragson because he got the wave around and did not stop during the stage break. There was a big discussion about tire cording. They went to Goodyear and they were told the track is taking rubber very well and there should be no more cording. Ryan Blaney radioed into his team that he had a vibration and did not know where it was coming from. Thankfully his tire did stay on until he got them changed at green flag pitstops. so if that was the issue there was no penalty. Everyone made it through green flag pit stops clean this round without penalties. William Byron was able to maintain his lead once everyone cycled through and cruised to a stage two win.

Mar 5, 2023; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Martin Truex Jr. (19) and driver William Byron (24) lead the field for the restart of the Pennzoil 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

We get into stage three stage racing with no cautions. We get multiple laps into the race and Joey Logano goes across the infield after what appears possible connection with Kyle Busch. Joey Logano will go on the damage clock and did not make it off the damage clock. This was a huge caution for multiple teams as they were able to take the wave around and get back on the lead lap. Also, many different pit strategies happened on pit road that changed up the field. Denny Hamlin tries to take the lead. He keeps it for just a little while as Kyle Larson charges through the field to take the lead. Since Denny Hamlin did not take four tires he was the first to hit pit road for green flag pit stops. Noah Gragson had another issue and got his third penalty for speeding on the pit road. Kyle Larson maintained the lead until Aric Amarillo crashed hard into the wall at almost the end of the race. This will send us overtime. Multiple cars went down the pit road and got tires. While others gambled and stayed out. William Byron and his team got out first and went side by side with Martin Truex Jr. They went to battling and cars were three and four wide. William Byron got out front and then Hendricks’ teammates got around Martin Truex Jr. AJ Allmendinger was wrecking behind the group after the white flag had been displayed. William Byron will unofficially sweep all stages and become the unofficial winner of Las Vegas.