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AP photo by Randy Holt / Team Penske driver Ryan Blaney (12) passes by Trackhouse Racing's Ross Chastain (1) as his car lifts off the track after making contact with Kyle Busch, right, during Sunday night's NASCAR All-Star Race at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth.

FORT WORTH, Texas — Ryan Blaney needed two extra laps after thinking he had already won the NASCAR All-Star Race and $1 million, staying in front through a green-white-checkered finish after a caution came out just yards before he got to the line the first time Sunday night.

Blaney's crew was already celebrating the victory in the pits of Texas Motor Speedway, and the Team Penske driver had already lowered the window net of his No. 12 Ford after crossing the start-finish line.

"Everybody thought the race was over," said Blaney, who then had to gather himself and get the net back in position to finish the race.

The event may not count for season points, but it has to be completed on a green flag, and the yellow initially came out just before Blaney had crossed the line because Ricky Stenhouse Jr. slammed into the outside wall going into the back stretch.

"That rule was never kind of relayed to us. I already took my window net down and everything. My left arm is worn out from trying to get that damn thing back up," Blaney said. "I got it rigged up enough to where it halfway stayed.

"I appreciate NASCAR for not making us come down pit road to fix it and letting me get it clipped back again to where we could stay out there."

Pushed by teammate Austin Cindric on the restart, Blaney was able to stay in front and hold off Joe Gibbs Racing's Denny Hamlin, who finished 0.266 second behind.

Afterward, Hamlin took to Twitter to say he disagreed with NASCAR issuing the caution and allowing Blaney to race without the net properly secured. Blaney, who said he can understand Hamlin's frustration, said NASCAR deemed the net safe when he was on the back stretch before the final restart. Blaney said the net was latched and he had both hands on the wheel.

Cindric finished third and Joey Logano, another Penske driver, was fourth. Trackhouse Racing's Daniel Suarez, who got into the main event via the same route as Stenhouse — through a 16-car open qualifier earlier in the evening — finished fifth.

Former NASCAR All-Star winners Kyle Busch of JGR and Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson of Hendrick Motorsports all crashed out in the second stage.

It was the fourth All-Star victory for Roger Penske's team. The most recent winner for him had been Logano in 2016.

Busch, the 2017 winner who started in pole position Sunday, was leading when he had a flat right rear tire coming out of the fourth turn on the 48th lap late in the second stage. He was slowing and going toward the bottom of the front stretch when he was hit from behind by Ross Chastain, who was going about 185 mph in the Trackhouse Racing No. 1 Chevrolet.

Chastain's car went almost all the way on its left side after the rattling collision, then dropped back on all four tires and careened toward the outside of the track and into 2020 All-Star winner Elliott.

"I saw Kyle have an issue with a tire down. I guessed left, and I should have guessed right," Chastain said.

Elliott said he saw Busch having difficulty and saw Chastain hit him really hard.

"I just didn't give him enough room. I knew he was going to go straight, I just didn't realize he was going to go that far right that quick. I just kind of misjudged it," Elliott said. "It was really avoidable on my end. I just kind of messed up and didn't get the gap shot quick enough."

Busch had led all but one of the first 48 laps before the wreck — his No. 18 Toyota wiggled coming out of the fourth turn because of the flat — which happened only a few laps into the second stage after Larson, who had won his previous two All-Star starts (2019 and 2021), got loose going into fourth turn and slammed hard into the wall before sliding through the grass infield. Larson hadn't changed tires and had a right front go down.

"It just let go in the center and took off," Larson said. "I hate that it happened. I feel like our car was good enough, depending on restarts since you can't pass at all, especially the leader anyways."

The series returns to points competition in the Coca-Cola 600 next Sunday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, kicking off the second half of the 26-race regular season before the 10-race playoffs begin.

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AP photo by LM Otero / Bubba Wallace, right, pours a drink on fellow Cup Series driver Ryan Blaney in victory lane at Texas Motor Speedway after Blaney won Sunday night's NASCAR All-Star Race in Fort Worth.

Dixon secures Indy 500 pole

INDIANAPOLIS — Not much rattles the Iceman at Indianapolis Motor Speedway — not even record speeds.

Scott Dixon smashed the Indianapolis 500 mark for pole position qualifying time a week ahead of "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing." His hands were shaking when he climbed from his Chip Ganassi Racing car after his first run Sunday, but the 41-year-old New Zealander was unbothered and went back out for a breathtaking final run.

His four-lap average of 234.046 mph around Indianapolis Motor Speedway gave Dixon the fifth Indy 500 pole of his career, and he'll lead the field to the green flag next Sunday with hopes of taking the checkered flag in the American open-wheel series' crown jewel for the second time.

"That's what this place is about — the ups and downs that you have just in one day, it's crazy," said Dixon, who won the Indy 500 in 2008 as the pole-sitter and has been second three times in his career. "I think that's kind of what we all secretly thrive on, right? To live on that edge is an amazing feeling, and when you do nail it, that's what it's all about. Days like these are amazing."

Considered the best IndyCar driver of his generation, Dixon's average broke Scott Brayton's pole-winning record of 233.718 mph set in 1996. Arie Luyendyk holds the four-lap qualifying record of 236.986 mph, also set in 1996, but not in a run for the pole. Dixon's qualifying run ranks second in 106 runnings of the most prestigious race in the world.

Dixon be joined on the front row of the starting grid by CGR teammate Alex Palou. Ed Carpenter Racing driver Rinus Veekay will start third and be joined on the second row by his team's owner. CGR's Marcus Ericsson and Tony Kanaan filled the next two spots after the "Fast Six" shootout to determine the order of the first three rows.

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AP photo by Michael Conroy / Chip Ganassi Racing driver Scott Dixon heads into the first turn during Indianapolis 500 qualifying Sunday.

F1: Verstappen wins with help

MONTMELÓ, Spain — Max Verstappen regained the Formula One points lead as the reigning series champion won the Spanish Grand Prix for his third consecutive victory after Charles Leclerc's Ferrari broke down while he was comfortably in front.

However, Verstappen also needed an assist from Red Bull teammate Sergio Pérez to get his fourth victory of the season. Pérez was leading the race — after pole-sitter Leclerc had abandoned — when the team told him to let Verstappen pass on the 49th of 66 laps.

"It's unfair but OK," Pérez told his team.

Pérez, who has just two wins in his F1 career, finished second, with Mercedes driver George Russell completing the podium. Verstappen, who got his first career win on this track in 2016, overtook Leclerc in the season standings and leads by six points after six races.

Verstappen, who secured his 24th career win, thanked his team and called Perez "a great teammate."

Verstappen looked like he would have to settle for a podium place to limit the damage after he went off the track and into the gravel — an incident his team blamed on a gust of wind — in the opening laps, knocking him back from second to fourth.

Lewis Hamilton, the winner of the past five F1 races on the 2.8-mile circuit, had a fine drive to finish fifth behind Ferrari's Carlos Sainz after the seven-time series champion was dropped to the back of the pack on the first lap when his Mercedes needed a tire change after a knock with Kevin Magnussen's Haas.

The series returns to competition next Sunday with the Monaco GP.

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