Description Sunday’s South Point 400 marks the first race of the Round of 12 for the NASCAR Cup Series. With the uncertainty that Talladega and the Charlotte Roval bring to teams, Championship contenders will be pressured to preform well in this race to put themselves in a good position to advance to the Round of 8. The 1.5-mile tri-oval located in Las Vegas Valley, Nevada, has an asphalt racing surface with 20 degrees of banking in each turn and 9 degrees on the front and backstretch. While the track first opened in 1996, the Cup Series held its inaugural race at the track in 1998 with NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Mark Martin leading 82 of 267 laps and taking home the first-ever checkered flag in Sin City.
The victory was a high stakes haul, automatically earning a position for Busch in the next round of the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs – moving the 2004 series champion from last place among the 12 playoff drivers entering the race to the first driver with a guaranteed spot in the Round of 8.
Busch held off Wood Brothers Racing driver Matt DiBenedetto by .148 seconds for the win – keeping the fan-favorite DiBenedetto from a first career victory. Denny Hamlin, who led a race-best 121 laps, finished third. Martin Truex Jr. and Alex Bowman rounded out the top five.