Kevin Harvick gets 4th win of 2018 with Dover victory

<a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nascar/sprint/drivers/205/" data-ylk="slk:Kevin Harvick">Kevin Harvick</a> competes during the NASCAR Cup Series auto race, Sunday, May 6, 2018, at Dover International Speedway in Dover, Del. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
Kevin Harvick competes during the NASCAR Cup Series auto race, Sunday, May 6, 2018, at Dover International Speedway in Dover, Del. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

Kevin Harvick made the final 80 laps at Dover nothing more than a formality.

Harvick’s teammate Clint Bowyer was leading when Sunday’s Cup Series race was halted for a rain shower. But with Harvick in second and having the fastest car of anyone on the track, it was only a matter of time before Harvick was in front.

That time came with 63 laps to go when Harvick passed Bowyer for the lead. Harvick pulled away after that and cruised to his fourth win of the season. He’s never won more than five races in a season. Given there are 25 races left in the 2018 season, it seems a great bet that Harvick will set a new career-best for wins.

Sunday’s win counts as the third for Harvick’s playoff purposes, however. While he’s officially got four wins, he only has 15 playoff points from victories thanks to a points penalty following his infamous win at Las Vegas.

With wins in the first two stages, Harvick collected seven playoff points Sunday. Those seven points mean Harvick has 19 playoff points overall and two more than Kyle Busch, the only other driver with multiple wins in 2018. Busch had to retire from the race at Dover because of a driveshaft issue.

Bowyer finished second while Daniel Suarez was third. Kurt Busch finished fifth behind Martin Truex Jr., giving Stewart-Haas Racing three cars in the top five.

“Three cars in the top five says a lot about where we are as a company …” Harvick said. “It was great to see those fans stick around for the finish, but it’s fun racing your teammate [Bowyer]. That says a lot about our company and one of your good friends as well.”

The win is Harvick’s second at Dover. His first at the concrete mile oval came in 2015 when he won in the fall. That win three years ago was a must for Harvick’s playoff hopes as he needed nothing less than a victory to advance to the next round.

Full results:

1. Kevin Harvick
2. Clint Bowyer
3. Daniel Suarez
4. Martin Truex Jr.
5. Kurt Busch
6. Brad Keselowski
7. Denny Hamlin
8. Ryan Blaney
9. Jimmie Johnson
10. Kyle Larson
11. Aric Almirola
12. Chase Elliott
13. Joey Logano
14. William Byron
15. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
16. Jamie McMurray
17. Kasey Kahne
18. Erik Jones
19. Trevor Bayne
20. Chris Buescher
21. AJ Allmendinger
22. Michael McDowell
23. Alex Bowman
24. Ty Dillon
25. Darrell Wallace Jr.
26. Austin Dillon
27. David Ragan
28. Ross Chastain
29. Matt DiBenedetto
30. Gray Gaulding
31. Landon Cassill
32. Reed Sorenson
33. Ryan Newman
34. Paul Menard
35. Kyle Busch
36. Cody Ware
37. Derrike Cope
38. Corey LaJoie

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.

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