Brand alliances in full force as NASCAR resumes playoff race

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Chase Elliott (9) leads the pack to the start line for a NASCAR Cup Series auto race at Talladega Superspeedway in Talladega, Ala., Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)

TALLADEGA, Ala. (AP) —  NASCAR’s playoff race at Talladega Superspeedway has resumed after rain pushed it back a day to Monday.

William Byron was the leader at the end of Sunday’s first stage, completed moments before heavy rain arrived. NASCAR plans to run the race to its completion Monday with the final two stages.

Title contender Brad Keselowski had an immediate issue when his car would not start as NASCAR sent them back to the track. A truck tried to push Keselowski’s car to get it to fire, but it required an extended trip that warranted a penalty, sending Keselowski to the rear of the field on the restart.

Ryan Newman immediately pitted as cars headed back on the track. Matt Crafton was driving Paul Menard’s car when the race resumed. Menard has a sore neck.

Chevrolet aggravated fans by holding a meeting for its teams during Sunday’s rain stoppage to discuss strategy and how the manufacturer wanted its drivers to race. Ford, Toyota and Chevrolet have mandated brand alliance at Talladega and Daytona, where drivers work together in the draft to navigate through traffic.

Byron was pushed to the opening stage victory by a train of Chevy drivers, and the bottom lane of Ford cars couldn’t get enough traction to catch Byron.


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