LOS ANGELES – Kyle Larson, Alex Bowman and William Byron each notched top-10 finishes for Hendrick Motorsports at the 2024 Clash at the Coliseum.
The Clash was originally scheduled for Sunday, but an impending weather forecast led to the race being moved up a full 24 hours. Saturday’s race marked the third time that the exhibition event was held at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum with a 0.25-mile track built inside the historic venue.
"The crowd was awesome out there for a spur-of-the-moment race with free admission and all of that," Larson said afterwards. "Hopefully, a lot of these fans, who maybe have never been to a race before, will now fall in love with the sport and it can kind of grow from there."
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For the third consecutive year, Larson drove the No. 5 HendrickCars.com Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 to a fifth-place finish. He is one of two drivers to finish in the top five in all three Clash races in Los Angeles. The 2021 NASCAR Cup Series champion was running as high as second following an aggressive move on the one-lap shootout to the halftime break at lap 75. The 31-year-old driver fell back to eighth before a late caution came out and he gained three spots in the overtime finish.
Bowman notched his second straight top-10 finish at the Coliseum. Driving the No. 48 Ally Chevy, he started the race fourth and spent all of the opening 75 laps in the top 10. After slipping back to 13th on lap 100, the 30-year-old driver methodically worked his way back up, cracking back into the top 10 in the closing laps. A strong overtime restart helped Bowman gain three spots in the final two laps.
Byron took 10th in the No. 24 Liberty University Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. He is one of three drivers to finish in the top 10 in all three Clash at the Coliseum races. The 26-year-old driver has never run a lap outside the top 10 at the short track – all 451 of them. After spending nearly all of the first half of the event in the top five, Byron slid to the back of the top 10 as he struggled with the handling of his car in the second half of the race. He lost a few spots in the closing overtime finish but was able to hold on for a top-10 result.
Chase Elliott qualified 14th in the No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevy. He spent the first half of the race working his way into the top 10. Shortly after the halftime break, the 2020 Cup Series champion suffered left-front damage to his car from contact. The 28-year-old driver pulled into the infield and his night would end with suspension damage.
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Denny Hamlin, who earned the pole position for the event, won the exhibition race.
Hendrick Motorsports has seven wins in the Clash, which is third-most among all teams. All of their victories came at Daytona International Speedway, which was the home of the Clash from 1979 to 2020. The track’s road course hosted the 2021 edition of the Clash. Ken Schrader (1989 and 1990), Jeff Gordon (1994 and 1997) and Jimmie Johnson (2005 and 2019) each won the event twice, while Dale Earnhardt Jr. scored a win in 2008.
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Next up for Hendrick Motorsports will be the 2024 DAYTONA 500 on Sunday, Feb. 18, at 2:30 p.m. ET on FOX, MRN Radio and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Channel 90). The organization has won "The Great American Race" eight times but has not been to victory lane in the event since 2014.