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      William Byron puts Axalta colors in victory lane with second Cup win


      © 2021 Rusty Jarrett / NKP

      In just their third race since reuniting as driver and crew chief, William Byron and Rudy Fugle made it back to victory lane with a dominant final stage at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

      Byron led 102 laps to capture his second career NASCAR Cup Series victory, locking himself into the NASCAR Playoffs early. Byron’s first Cup win came in last year’s regular-season finale at Daytona International Speedway.

      “It was just a really smooth day,” Byron said. “We worked hard in the winter on this track. I can’t believe it. … This car was just awesome. It’s really a lot of hard work. I think we went to the (simulator) four or five times this offseason, and it pays off, man. It’s awesome.”

      The win was the first Cup victory of Fugle’s career after he jumped from the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series to the Cup Series in the offseason. He became the second-fastest crew chief to win for Hendrick Motorsports behind Gary Nelson who won in his first outing with Geoff Bodine at the 1986 DAYTONA 500.