Race recap: Matt Kenseth registered his 13th Nextel Cup win and third of this season on Sunday as he stayed ahead of Jeff Gordon to cross the line with a 0.622-second margin. The two-hour, 57-minute race saw 26 lead changes among ...
Race recap: Matt Kenseth registered his 13th Nextel Cup win and third of this season on Sunday as he stayed ahead of Jeff Gordon to cross the line with a 0.622-second margin.
The two-hour, 57-minute race saw 26 lead changes among 11 drivers and 10 cautions for 36 laps during the 200 miles, and 28 cars finished on the lead lap. Polestarter Jeff Burton was sidelined from early engine failure at lap 17. Kenseth led six times for a race-high 87 laps, including the final 31 circuits. He credited taking care of his Goodyear tires after the final pit stop as one key to his win.
As the races narrow to just three for drivers to lock in a top-10 spot to be in the championship run, the focus on finishing positions is keen. While it appears that points leader Jimmie Johnson and Kenseth, behind by 58, are solidly in contention, others are shuffling.
The remaining eight, currently in the top 10, are Kevin Harvick, Mark Martin, Tony Stewart, Jeff Gordon, Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin, Jeff Burton and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Polestarter Burton took a big hit Sunday, falling from fourth to ninth after losing his engine on lap 17.
Goodyear quote from Phil Holmer, marketing manager for stock cars: "We had the same tire setup on Sunday as we did in the June race at Michigan, which ran fine then just as it did today. It some cases, it allowed teams to use tire strategy for track position, by changing all four, two or sometimes no tires during a pit stop. The Eagle tires worked very well and we are understandably pleased."
Other NASCAR races:
At Michigan on Saturday, Dale Earnhardt Jr., had a controversial win after he and Carl Edwards tangled after an overtime restart, with Edwards spinning out of the lead. That froze the field with the ninth caution, giving the win to Earnhardt. There's just one chance at a green/white/checkered overtime finish. The remainder of the top five were Casey Mears, Robby Gordon, Matt Kenseth and Mark Martin. It was the second Busch win for Earnhardt Jr. in four starts this year and the 22nd of his series career.
Also on Saturday, but at Nashville (Tenn.) Superspeedway, the Craftsman Truck Series had Johnny Benson claim the honors in an overtime scramble. As Mike Skinner was leading the overtime restart, he and Todd Bodine tangled and went into the wall, with Benson streaking past, followed by Jack Sprague, Marcos Ambrose, Ted Musgrave and Brendan Gaughan.