Brad Keselowski opened the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs with his third consecutive win of the season in Sunday’s South Point 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Keselowski survived a wild playoff opener to score the 500th victory for Team Penske and move on to the second round. He held off Kyle Larson in a shootout to the checkered flag to score his 27th career Cup win.
“500 wins today, huge day for the Captain (Roger Penske),” Keselowski said. “I did it, boss! To start off the playoffs with a win, that’s really strong. It’s really a testament to this team here. They’ve been so strong on pit road and I couldn’t have done it without them. We weren’t as fast as the 78 car (Truex), but we nailed the pit stops and restarts when it counted.”
Keselowski led 75 of the day’s 272 laps.
Larson, Martin Truex Jr., Joey Logano and Ryan Blaney rounded out the top five.
Aric Almirola, Kyle Busch, Daniel Suarez, Ryan Newman and Paul Menard completed the first 10 finishers.
Truex Jr. and Keselowski won the first two stages.
Jimmie Johnson, Chase Elliott, Erik Jones and Denny Hamlin are in the bottom four of the playoff standings.
The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series now heads to Richmond Raceway for the second race of the playoffs next Saturday night.
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Playoff Drivers in BOLD
|3||10||78||Martin Truex Jr.||Toyota||272||Running||96||52|