It’s the longest race of the season but the drivers and teams are ready to run 400 laps around Charlotte Motor Speedway for 600 miles of racing as they honour those who have served, fought for their country, and died in the name of freedom.

Along with the traditional opening prayer, a group of pipers plays “Amazing Grace”, there is a 21 gun salute, the playing of “Taps”, and the performance of the National Anthem.

Only a few hours ago with no practice, Kurt Busch put his number one car on the pole with seven time champion driver Jimmie Johnson starting alongside on the front row.

The starting line up for the Coca-Cola 600 is:
Kurt Busch
Jimmie Johnson
Chase Elliott
Matt Kenseth
Tyler Reddick
Austin Dillon
Joey Logano
Martin Truex Jr
Brad Keselowski – moved to the back of the field due to unapproved adjustments
William Byron
Kyle Busch
Alex Bowman
Denny Hamlin
Erik Jones
Christopher Bell
Ty Dillon
Ricky Stenhouse Jr
Ryan Newman
Chris Buescher
Clint Bowyer
Ross Chastain
Kevin Harvick
Bubba Wallace
Corey LaJoie
John Hunter Nemechek
Ryan Blaney
Michael McDowell
Cole Custer
Ryan Preece
Quin Houff
Gray Gaulding
Timmy Hill – moved to the back of the field
Matt DiBenedetto – moved to the back of the field in a backup car
JJ Yeley – moved to the back of the field
Brennan Poole
BJ McLeod
Daniel Suarez
Garrett Smithely
Joey Gase
Aric Almirola – did not post a qualifying time and made unapproved adjustments

With 400 miles in the race, NASCAR has added a fourth stage to the race with each stage lasting 100 laps.

Denny Hamlin’s car is losing some ballast out of his car on the pace laps.  NASCAR has called Hamlin to pit road to replace the ballast

NASCAR has called for a competition caution on lap 20.

Kurt Busch brings the field down for the green flag start of the race and jumps out in front for the lead.

Kurt Busch leads the first lap with Jimmie Johnson in second; Matt Kenseth, Chase Elliott, and Tyler Reddick round out the top five.

Lap five, Denny Hamlin is still on pit road getting his car repaired with the the proper ballast.

Kurt Busch has led the first five laps with Jimmie Johnson in second; Matt Kenseth, Chase Elliott, and Tyler Reddick round out the top five.

Denny Hamlin returns to the track six laps down.

Ten laps in, Kurt Busch has led every lap so far.

Lap 17 Kurt Busch continues to lead the race with Jimmie Johnson in second; Chase Elliott, Matt Kenseth, and Tyler Reddick round out the top five.

At the end of lap 20, NASCAR throws the competition caution.  This is a normal caution flag where teams have the option to come down pit road for service.  The cars will line up according to how the leave pit road…or stayed out on the track.

Kurt Busch wins the race off of pit road and holds on to his lead.

Erik Jones was charged with an uncontrolled tire on pit road.  Chris Buescher and Daniel Suarez’ crews were charged with coming over the pit wall too soon.

Kurt Busch brings the field down for the green flag restart on lap 28 with Martin Truex Jr alongside; but it is Busch who gets out in front to hold on to the lead.  Chase Elliott, Tyler Reddick and Jimmie Johnson round out the top five.

Jimmie Johnson has slowed and is falling through the field and is now in 12th place.

Lap 34 Kurt Busch leads the race with Martin Truex Jr in second; Chase Elliott, Tyler Reddick, and Joey Logano round out the top five.

Lap 47, Kurt Busch has led every lap so far with Martin Truex Jr a quarter of a second behind in second; Chase Elliott, Tyler Reddick, and Joey Logano round out the top five.

The caution flag comes out on lap 49 for rain at the track.  NASCAR has red flagged the race due to the rain and have sent out the track drying equipment as the drivers exit their cars and cove the cars.

After nearly 30 minutes, the rain has stopped and the track drying activities continue as NASCAR works to get the race going once again.

After a delay of nearly an hour, the covers come off of the cars and the crews get them ready to take to the track once again.

As the sun makes an appearance as it begins to set, the drivers are called to their cars and prepare to get the race going again.

After a red flag condition of over an hour for bad weather, NASCAR pulls the red flag and puts out the caution flag as the drivers get moving once again.  The cars continue making laps while NASCAR and the crews get pit road dried.

On lap 54, pit road is open and the lead lap cars come down for some fresh tires and service.

For the first time in the race there is another driver in the lead, after taking only two tires, Alex Bowman brings the field down for the green flag restart on lap 58 and takes the lead with team mate Chase Elliott is second; Martin Truex Jr, Tyler Reddick, and Kyle Busch round out the top five.

With 35 cars on the lead lap, Alex Bowman leads the race with Chase Elliott, Martin Truex Jr, Tyler Reddick, and Kurt Busch rounding out the top five.

One hundred miles in, lap 69, Alex Bowman holds on to the lead with team mate Chase Elliott in second; Martin Truex Jr, Tyler Reddick, and Joey Logano round out the top five.  The Busch brothers occupy spots six and seven.

Ty Dillon makes an unscheduled trip down pit road for a possible loose tire and is now two laps down.

Fully under the lights, Alex Bowman continues to lead the race on lap 77 with Chase Elliott over a half a second back; Martin Truex Jr, Tyler Reddick, and Joey Logano round out the top five.

Lap 80, Alex Bowman has increased his lead to over a second on Chase Elliott.  There are 33 cars on the lead lap.

With the sun gone and a rain storm to cool down the track, the drivers are making their fastest laps of the race.

Christopher Bell and Ryan Blaney make contact on the track sending Bell slideways but the track stays green.

Lap 85, Alex Bowman’s lead is down to under half a second.

Lap 87, Alex Bowman has increased his lead to over half a second on Martin Truex Jr; Chase Elliott, Tyler Reddick, and Joey Logano round out the top five.  Since losing the lead, Kurt Busch has been mired back in the field.

Only six laps remain in stage one, Alex Bowman leads the race; Martin Truex Jr, Chase Elliott, Tyler Reddick, and Joey Logano round out the top five.

Timmy Hill makes an unscheduled trip down pit road.

Clint Bowyer brings out the caution flag with just three laps remaining in stage one after hitting the wall hard from eleventh place with a flat tire.  Bowyer gets out of his car gingerly but unaided.

Stage one ends under caution with Alex Bowman taking the win.

The top 10 at the end of stage one:
Alex Bowman
Martin Truex Jr
Chase Elliott
Tyler Reddick
Joey Logano
Kyle Busch
Austin Dillon
Jimmie Johnson
William Byron
Kurt Busch

Ricky Stenhouse Jr makes a trip down pit road for tire issues before pit road is open and has to restart the race from the back of the field.

Drivers come down pit road for service with Alex Bowman getting out first and Kyle Busch right behind.

Alex Bowman brings the field down for the green flag start of stage two from the inside lane on lap 107 and goes nose to nose with Kyle Busch before edging out for the lead.

Lap 108, Alex Bowman has the lead; Martin Truex Jr, Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott, and Joey Logano round out the top five.

After being checked out at the infield care center for the mandatory exam, Clint Bowyer is fine and ready to go for the next race on Wednesday.

Lap 112, Alex Bowman continues to lead the race with Martin Truex Jr in second; Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott, and Joey Logano round out the top five.  Pole sitter Kurt Busch has dropped to 15th place.

Lap 117, Alex Bowman has pulled out to a lead of over half a second on Martin Truex Jr.

Kurt Busch led the first 54 laps of the race, but since then Alex Bowman has led the rest; at lat 125,he has a lead of over a second on Martin Truex Jr.

Bubba Wallace makes an unscheduled pit stop with brake issues…or lack thereof.  Bubba takes his car to the garage.  Under the current NASCAR rules, the 43 team can take their car to the garage and work on it due to mechanical issues.  It is only after an accident that the car is considered out of the race if it goes to the garage.

Lap 132, Alex Bowman has pulled out to a lead of nearly two seconds on Martin Truex Jr; Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott, and Joey Logano round out the top five.

Reports are that there was a tire hub issues on Bubba Wallace’s car.

Lap 142, Alex Bowman continues to lead the race with 1.62 seconds on Martin Truex Jr; Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott, and William Byron round out the top five.  In 12th place, Jimmie Johnson is the only Hendrick Motorsports driver not in the top five.  There are 28 cars on the lead lap.

Lap 150, Alex Bowman continues to hold on to his lead of over a second on Martin Truex Jr; Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott, and William Byron round out the top five.

Green flag pit stops have begun just after the halfway point of the stage.

After leader Alex Bowman made his pit stop, Jimie Johnson became the new leader.  The top seven drivers have yet to make their pit stop.

Matt Kenseth was caught speeding on pit road and will have to make a pass through penalty.

Lap 163, Jimmie Johnson makes his pit stop giving the lead over the John Hunter Nemechek.

Lap 164, Ryan Preece is the new leader.

Lap 165, Ricky Stenhouse Jr is the new leader but is quickly passed by Alex Bowman who retakes the lead on fresh tires.

After green flag pit stops have cycled through, Alex Bowman has a two second lead on Martin Truex Jr with Kyle Busch in third.

With 22 laps remaining in stage two, Alex Bowman has pulled out to a lead of over four seconds on Martin Truex Jr, Chase Elliott, and William Byron round out the top five.

“Driving the wheels off of it,” Alex Bowman has increased his lead to over five seconds on Martin Truex Jr with 17 cars on the lead lap.  Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott, and William Byron round out the top five with Erik Jones on his bumper.

Dominating the race, Alex Bowman is now over six seconds out in front of the Martine Truex Jr; Kyle Busch is in third over 10 seconds back.  There are only 16 cars on the lead lap.

After dominating the stage, Alex Bowman wins stage two by over three seconds on Martin Truex Jr.

The top 10 at the end of stage two:
Alex Bowman/’Martin Truex Jr
Kyle Busch
William Byron
Chase Elliott
Erik Jones
Joey Logano
Austin Dillon
Ryan Blaney
Jimmie Johnson

At the end of lap 203, NASCAR brings the field down pit road for a “pause to remember” for 30 seconds to remember those who have died in the service of their country.

The engines are again fired and the pace car brings the field around before making pit stops.

Leader Alex Bowman wins the race off of pit road with Kyle Busch in second.

Kyle Busch was caught speeding on pit road and will have to restart the race from the back of the field.

Chase Elliott’s team had an issue during his pit stop and Elliott had to make a second trip down pit road.

Alex Bowman brings the field down for the green flag start of stage three on lap 209 and holds on to his lead.

Lap 210, the top five are Alex Bowman, Martin Truex Jr, Erik Jones, William Byron, and Austin Dillon.  Chase Elliott is in 16th place and Kyle Busch is in 18th place.

Lap 214, Alex Bowman is holding on to a very narrow lead on Martin Truex Jr.  Kyle Busch and Chase Elliott are mired back in the pack and have yet to make any progress.

Since the start of the race, the track temperature has dropped some 25 degrees.

Lap 220, With Alex Bowman in the lead, there is less than half a second between the top three drivers of Alex Bowman, Martin Truex Jr, and William Byron.

On lap 224, Martin Truex Jr gets around Alex Bowman with a little help from lapped car Joey Gase to take the lead.

Lap 230, Martin Truex Jr has pulled out to a one second lead on Alex Bowman; Erik Jones, William Byron, and Ryan Blaney round out the top five.

Ryan Newman’s team is reporting a battery issue.

Lap 237, Martin Truex Jr has increased his lead to over a second and a half on Alex Bowman; Erik Jones, William Byron, and Ryan Blaney round out the top five.

Lap 238, Ryan Newman makes a pit stop to address the battery issue.

Lap 242, Martin Truex Jr has pulled out to a lead of over two and a half seconds on Alex Bowman; Erik Jones, William Byron, and Ryan Blaney round out the top five,

FOX Sports reports that it was a lower control arm and not a flat tire that sent Clint Bowyer into the wall.

Lap 249, Martin Truex Jr is now two and a half seconds out in front of Erik Jones; Alex Bowman, William Byron, and Ryan Blaney round out the top five.

Alex Bowman is reporting a vibration as drivers begin making green flag pit stops.

Lap 255, Martn Truex Jr has a lead of over three seconds on Erik Jones.

Leaders come down pit road for service on lap 254 giving Brad Keselowski the lead.

Lap 262, leader Brad Keselowski finally makes his green flag pit stop and gives the lead back to Martin Truex Jr with Erik Jones less than two seconds back; Alex Bowman, William Byron, and Ryan Blaney round out the top five.

With the end of stage three only 30 laps away, there has been only one caution flag for an on track incident when Clint Bowyer got into the wall after a lower control arm broke.

Lap 274, Martin Truex Jr has a one second lead on Alex Bowman; Erik Jones, Ryan Blaney, and William Byron round out the top five.  There are 18 cars on the lead lap.

Matt Kenseth brings out just the second caution flag for an on track incident on lap 275 when he has a flat tire and gets slideways into the wall.

Taking only two tires, Martin Truex Jr wins the race off of pit road; as did several other drivers.  Erik Jones is the first driver to take four tires.

Joey Logano, Kevin Harvick, and Chase Elliott did not come down pit road and are now the top three drivers.

Joey Logano brings the field down for the green flag restart on lap 281 from the outside lane and edges out Kevin Harvick for the lead.

Lap 282, the top five are Joey Logano, Martin Truex Jr, Alex Bowman, Jimmie Johnson, and Ryan Blaney.

The drivers are getting three wide as they battle for position…and clean air.

Of the three drivers who stayed out on the track at the caution flag, Joey Logano is the only one to hold on to his position; the other two, Kevin Harvick and Chase Elliott have fallen through the field and are near the end of the lead lap.

Ten laps remain in stage three, Joey Logano is the leader with Alex Bowman, Ryan Blaney, Jimmie Johnson, and Martin Truex Jr rounding out the top five.

Joey Logano wins stage three for his first stage win of the season…and it’s his birthday.

The top 10 at the end of stage three:
Joey Logano
Alex Bowman
Ryan Blaney
Jimmie Johnson
Martin Truex Jr
Kyle Busch
Erik Jones
Brad Keselowski
Austin Dillon
William Byron

The drivers come down pit road for service with Matt DiBenedetto winning the race off of pit road after taking only two tires.

Matt DiBenedetto brings the field down for the green flag start of stage four on lap 307  and goes nose to nose with Joey Logano before getting out in front for the lead.  As the drivers volley for position, Martin Truex Jr gets out out in front.

Lap 309, Matt DiBenedetto retakes the lead; Martin Treux Jr, Jimmie Johnson, Alex Bowman, and William Byron round out the top five.  DiBenedetto is in a backup car after crashing on his qualifying round.

Lap 311,Martin Truex Jr passes Matt DiBenedetto for the lead.  Jimmie Johnson gets around DiBenedetto for second place.

Kurt Busch makes an unscheduled trip down pit road for a possible tire issue.

Lap 114, Martin Truex Jr is in the lead; Jimmie Johnson, Matt DiBenedetto, Alex Bowman, and William Byron round out the top five.

Lap 321, Martin Truex Jr is in the lead with Jimmie Johnson, Alex Bowman, Brad Keselowski, and Matt DiBenedetto rounding out the top five.

After getting only two tires on the last pit stop, Matt DiBenedetto is beginning to fall through the field as the tires wear.

After dominating two of the last four 600 races, Martin Truex Jr has a lead of just over half a second on seven time champion Jimmie Johnson as he looks to notch another win at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

After over 300 of the 400 laps in the books, there are only three cars out of the race with 19 cars on the lead lap.

Lap 334, Martin Truex Jr has pulled out to a lead of over a second on Jimmie Johnson; Alex Bowman, Brad Keselowski, and William Byron round out the top five.

Sixty to go, Martin Truex Jr has a lead of over a second and a half on Jimmie Johnson; Alex Bowman, Brad Keselowski, and William Byron round out the top five.

The caution flag comes out on lap 347 when Joey Gase spins out and makes an off road excursion.

With just 51 laps remaining in the race the drivers come down pit road for service.  Jimmie Johnson wins the race off of pit road with Brad Keselowski in second.  Martin Truex Jr comes off of pit road in third.

Joey Logano was caught speeding on pit road and will have to start at the back of the field.

Kyle Busch entered pit road in eleventh place but came out in sixth.

Jimmie Johnson brings the field down for the green flag restart from the outside lane on lap 353.  Getting a push from Martin Truex Jr, Brad Keselowski takes the lead but gets a challenge from Jimmie Johnson before Johnson falls to third place.  The top five are Brad Keselowski, Chase Elliott, Jimmie Johnson, Martin Truex Jr, and Alex Bowman.

Drivers are getting three wide back in the field.

Leader Brad Keselowski started the race from the back of the field after his crew made unapproved adjustments to his car after qualifying.

Forty to go, Brad Keselowski has a half second lead on Chase Elliott; Jimmie Johnson, Martin Truex Jr, and Alex Bowman round out the top five.

Lap 365, Chase Elliott gets around Brad Keselowski to take the lead; Jimmie Johnson, Martin Truex Jr, and Alex Bowman round out the top five.

Thirty to go, Chase Elliott has a lead of over half a second on Brad Keselowski; Jimmie Johnson, Martin Truex jr, and Alex Bowman round out the top five.  With William Byron in sixth place, all four of the Hendrick Motorsports cars are in the top six positions.

Twenty five to go, Chase Elliott has a one second lead on Brad Keselowski with 20 cars on the lead lap.

Only 20 laps remain in the race and as the clock approaches midnight, Chase Elliott has a once second lead on Brad Keselowski; Jimmie Johnson, Martin Truex Jr, and Alex Bowman round out the top five.

The young Elliott is looking to do something his Dad, Hall of Famer Bill Elliott never did…win the Coca-Cola 600.  With only 14 laps remaining in the race, he has a lead of nearly a second and a half on Brad Keselowski.

Ten to go, Ryan Newman reports a second battery issue.

Chase Elliott has increased his lead over Brad Keselowski to nearly two seconds with Jimmie Johnson, Martin Truex Jr, and Alex Bowman rounding out the top five.

Five to go, with 20 cars on the lead lap, Chase Elliott has a lead of over a second and a half on Brad Keselowski.

With only two laps remaining in the race, William Byron brings out the caution flag with a flat tire.  The race will go into overtime and a green/white/checker finish.

Some of the drivers come down pit road for fresh tires, but many stayed out on the track.

Brad Keselowski is the new leader with Jimmie Johnson starting alongside on the front row.

With the overtime finish, this becomes the longest race in NASCAR history.

Brad Keselowski brings the field down for the green flag restart and edges out Jimmie Johnson for the lead.

Brad Keselowski takes the white flag with Jimmie Johnson in second.

Brad Keselowski wins the race with Jimmie Johnson in second.  Chase Elliott ends up in third after making a pit stop with two to go.

The unofficial results of the Coca-Cola 600:
Brad Keselowski
Jimmie Johnson
Chase Elliott
Ryan Blaney
Kyle Busch
Kevin Harvick
Martin Truex Jr
Kurt Busch
Tyler Reddick
Christopher Bell
Erik Jones
Chris Buescher
Cole Custer
Joey Logano
Austin Dillon
Aric Almirola
John Hunter Nemechek
Matt DiBenedetto
Michael McDowell
Alex Bowman
William Byron
Ross Chastain
Ryan Preece
Corey LaJoie
Ricky Stenhouse Jr
Ty Dillon
Matt Kenseth
Ryan Newman
Daniel Suarez
Denny Hamlin
Brennan Poole
Gray Gaulding
BJ McLeod
Garrett Smithley
Timmy Hill
Quin Houff
Joey Gase
JJ Yeley
Bubba Wallace
Clint Bowyer