Kevin Harvick Wins in NASCAR's Return Without Fans Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Busch Light YOURFACEHERE Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Cup Series The Real Heroes 400 at Darlington Raceway on May 17, 2020 in Darlington, South Carolina. NASCAR resumes the season after the nationwide lockdown due to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19).
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Kevin Harvick is the winner of The Real Heroes 400 in the NASCAR Cup Series' return to action amid the coronavirus pandemic. The race was run without any fans in attendance, something Harvick touched on when speaking to Fox Sports after the race. "We miss the fans," Harvick said when looking into the empty bleachers. "It's just weird because there's nobody up there."

The win is the first of the season for Harvick who came into the day as the Cup Series points leader after the first four races, despite not having made it to victory lane until Darlington. Harvick is the only driver to have finished in the top 10 of all five Cup races this season. He also reached a career milestone with the victory, becoming just the 14th Cup Series driver to reach 50 career wins -- tying Junior Johnson and Ned Jarrett -- and coincidentally breaking a tie at 49 with his team owner Tony Stewart. "It's a pretty big honor to win 50 races in this deal," Harvick said.

Alex Bowman finished second, with Kurt Busch in third, followed by Chase Elliot in fourth and Denny Hamlin in fifth.

The Cup Series now has just a couple of days off before returning to the track at Darlington on Tuesday night, May 20, with the Toyota 500, which will be run under the lights over 500 kilometers.

This article was originally published on on May 17.


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