AVONDALE, Ariz. (AP) _ Denny Hamlin saved his season by winning at ISM Raceway near Phoenix to advance into NASCAR’s title-deciding race.
Hamlin then cruised to his sixth win of the season and punched the air with his fist in his car as he crossed the finish line.
Hamlin will race Gibbs teammates Busch and Martin Truex Jr., as well as Kevin Harvick of Stewart-Haas Racing, for the championship. Of the four, Hamlin is the only one without a previous championship.
Chase Elliott, Kyle Larson, Ryan Blaney and Joey Logano were eliminated. Logano was seeking a chance to make it back-to-back titles but had a mechanical problem early in the final stage that dropped him deep into the field.