The lists of “never quit” quotes are endless.  “It’s not over ‘til it’s over.”  “To finish first, first, you must finish.”  “A winner is a dreamer who never quits.”  And, from the great philosopher John Belushi, in Animal House, “Was it over when the Germans bombed Peral Harbor?”

All apply to the Coke 600.  It may not be the ultimate test of machine it once was, but it sure is a test of man’s patience, focus and stick-to-it-ness.

During the race, Denny Hamlin reminded his crew that it was a marathon and to stay with it.  Boy, did that advice pay off.

Think about Kyle Larson.  He drove from the back to the front, at least, three times and nearly won.  According to NASCAR, he had 197 green flag passes.  Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. had 196.

Kyle Busch end up 2nd, he was a lap down at one point and spent most of the night hovering around 10th.  Kevin Harvick spent nearly half the race outside of the top-15 and still came home third.

Did the fastest car win the race?  No, but more often than not, it doesn’t.  The winner stayed on it when things went sideways; understanding that 400 laps is plenty of time to make up lost ground, because it isn’t over until the checkered flag flies.