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Nationwide: Traffic hands Keselowski win in New Hampshire

Kevin Harvick fell foul of a late traffic jam among the backmarkers, to hand Brad Keselowski victory in Saturday afternoon's NASCAR Nationwide Series race in New Hampshire.
Penske's Brad Keselowski led 131 laps of the FW Webb 200 Nationwide Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Saturday afternoon, but looked as though he would have to settle for second place after losing the top spot at the final start - only to have the race handed back to him when Kevin Harvick fell foul of lapped traffic with 22 laps to go.

"It was one of those days when things came together for us," said Keselowski after the race. "We had a good car and caught a little bit of a break."

Keselowski had successfully converted pole position to a lead for the first 37 laps, with Harvick swiftly moving up into the chase position in second while meanwhile Kyle Busch - the winner of the last three Nationwide races at Loudon - was dropping back badly with a fuel pressure problem.

A caution for debris from Travis Pastrana's car allowed everyone to come in for their first pit stops, Keselowski and Harvick dropping down several positions after opting for a four-tyre change allowing Kasey Kahne and Austin Dillon to take to the front with two-tyre stops.

Busch's crew fretted over the #54 and changed a carburettor in an attempt to fix the fuel pressure issue, but there was a sense of despair when they couldn't find any obvious problem to solve. Sure enough it was taken back to the garage minutes later for a fuel cell change, only coming back out when he was already 27 laps down.

The next caution was on lap 81, when a tyre going down sent Travis Pastrana into a hard hit into the SAFER barrier. Happiest to see the yellows come out was series points leader Elliott Sadler whose crew had gone the wrong way with changes in the earlier visit to pit lane and who had dropped out of the top ten s a result. Rickey Stenhouse Jr. was also relieved to see pit lane again to see if the team could do anything about his excessive wheel spin.

This time it was Keselowski opting to go for the two-tyre change in the pits and he duly reclaimed the lead for the restart alongside the only other driver on the lead lap to do likewise, Cole Whitt. Keselowski shot off in front while Whitt's pit strategy boost didn't last long under green and he soon fell away, leaving Sam Hornish Jr. in second ahead of a charging Austin Dillon and Kevin Harvick in fourth place.

Whitt was the cause of the third yellow on lap 122 when he appeared to mistime his braking into turn 1, locked up and ploughed into the back of Danny Efland's car, turning the #4 around and sending it backwards into the SAFER barrier with enough force to see the rear of the car leap up into the air. Whitt himself sustained some serious front end crumpling in the process.

This time everyone at the front opted for a two-tyre pit stop which meant that Keselowski just managed to beat his Penske team mate Hornish out of pit lane, followed by Dillon and Harvick in an unchanged top four. Keselowski was again quick to get away, leaving the rest of them in a three-wide battle for second that was finally won by Harvick, while Dillon found his momentum cut off and he succumbed to Kasey Kahne as he was briefly shuffled down to fifth place.




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Crew members work on the #99 Boost Mobile Toyota of Travis Pastrana after he hit the wall in the FW Webb 200 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. (Photo Credit: Tom Pennington/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Brad Keselowski celebrates winning the FW Webb 200 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. (Photo Credit: Tom Pennington/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 Dow Chevrolet, spins out after an incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on March 1, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia.  (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmie John`s/Budweiser Chevrolet, suffers a mechanical issue during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 28, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia.  (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #88 Bad Boy Buggies Chevrolet, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series Hisense 250 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 28, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Moore/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #88 Bad Boy Buggies Chevrolet, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series Hisense 250 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 28, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR)
David Ragan, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, drives in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 27, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo Credit: Kevin C. Cox/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmie John`s/Budweiser Chevrolet, prepares to drive during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 27, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo Credit: Sarah Glenn/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John’s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS qualifies in second position Friday, February 27, 2015 for a front row position start in Sunday`s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kyle Larson, driver of the #4 Energizer Chevrolet SS qualifies in sixth position Friday, February 27, 2015 for Sunday`s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Gene Stefanyshyn, NASCAR Vice President of Innovation and Racing Development, speaks to members of the media after a testing session at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 26, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia.  (Photo Credit: Kevin C. Cox/NASCAR via Getty Images)
David Ragan, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, stands in the garage during a testing session at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 26, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo Credit: Kevin C. Cox/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Clint Bowyer drives the #15 5-Hour Energy Toyota during a testing session at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 26, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia.  (Photo Credit: Kevin C. Cox/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt, Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet SS races to a third place finish with Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet SS who finishes in fifth place in the Daytona 500 Sunday, February 22, 2015 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by HHP/Alan Marler for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS pulls into his pit on his way to a second place finish in the Daytona 500 Sunday, February 22, 2015 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by HHP/Harold Hinson for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet, Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, and Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Percision Chevrolet, lead the field during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 57th Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 22, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/Getty Images)
Smoke pours from the #2 Miller Lite Ford, driven by Brad Keselowski, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 57th Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 22, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Chris Buescher, driver of the #60 Kellogg/Cheez-It Ford, races Brad Keselowski, driver of the #22 Discount Tire Ford, Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 ENEOS Chevrolet, and Ryan Reed, driver of the #16 Lilly/American Diabetes Association Ford, during the NASCAR XFINITY Series Alert Today Florida 300 at Daytona International Speedway on February 21, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

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