Denny Hamlin overcame a bad starting position and an awful start to the race to win the 400 at Chicagoland Speedway in Illinois on Sunday — the first race day in NASCAR’s 2015 Sprint Cup Series Chase playoffs. The victory gave Hamlin an automatic berth in the second round of the playoffs; four drivers will be removed from the Chase field in two weeks.

Despite starting 29th on Sunday — and dropping one lap off the lead after spinning out on the second lap — Hamlin rallied to win. Carl Edwards finished second, followed by Kurt Busch, Ryan Newman and Matt Kenseth.

Racers Kevin Harvick and Jimmie Johnson got into a spat when Harvick crashed just two laps after Johnson's car made contact with his rear tire, which precipitated the wreck. Harvick shoved Johnson when the latter went to Harvick's trailer after the race. The two drivers needed to be restrained from each other by crew members.

The Chase resumes next Sunday at New Hampshire.

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