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Atlanta might have just produced NASCAR’s best finish

Only 2003 at Darlington and 2011 at Talladega were closer

It was the third closest finish in NASCAR history but it has a case for being the most spectacular in terms of spectacle.

Daniel Suarez won the Ambetter Health 400 on Sunday at Atlanta Motor Speedway in a three-wide photo finish over Ryan Blaney and Kyle Busch.

Blaney got too far ahead on the backstretch while Busch got a push from behind by Bubba Wallace. At the same time, Suarez carried the momentum from the outside and they were three-wide. No one had pushing help from behind.

They bounced off each other lightly and remained three-wide all the way around Turns 3 and 4 and across the tr-oval.

NASCAR needed about a minute to review the finish before officially declaring Suarez the winner.  

“It was so damn close, man. It was so damn close,” Suarez said. “It was good racing. Ryan Blaney there, Kyle Busch, Austin Cindric also was doing a great job giving pushes. In the back straightaway he didn’t push me because he knew I was going to fuck his teammate (Blaney) but man, what a job.”

Blaney doesn’t know what he would have done differently right now.

“I thought I laid back enough in 1 and 2 to not let both lanes get that big of a run,” Blaney said. “I did that like the three laps before the end and I was able to manage it kind of fairly well, and they just got both lanes shoving super hard. I just chose the bottom, and it was the safest place to be.

“What a cool finish. Appreciate the fans for sticking around. That’s a lot of fun. That’s always a good time when we can do that, race clean, three-wide finish to the end.

“Happy for Daniel. That was cool to see. Fun racing with Kyle. I can’t complain; I’ve won them by very, very little, too, so I can’t complain too much when I lose them by that much.”

Busch said Suarez won because he was the last guy to get to the party and had the least pull back from a sidedraft.

“Yeah, typically whoever is behind getting into 3 prevails at the start-finish line with the side draft and everything, so I was — I think I was second to (Blaney) right there, and (Suarez) was the furthest back, and he made the ground back up with the side draft and stuff.

“I don’t think you could stop. That certainly wouldn’t have put us in the right spot either I don’t think. But overall, just real proud of everybody at RCR, ECR, and our Cheddar’s Camaro was fast.

“It’s good to see Daniel get a win. We were helping each being Chevy team partners and working together there. Shows that when you do have friends and you can make alliances that they do seem to work, and that was a good part of today.”

There were 48 lead changes amongst 14 drivers on Sunday.

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