Ignoring the old adage about "a rock and a hard place", Jamie McMurray scored his fourth consecutive win at the North Carolina Speedway at Rockingham, a record he now shares with series veteran Mark Martin "I remember watching Mark win here...
Ignoring the old adage about "a rock and a hard place", Jamie McMurray scored his fourth consecutive win at the North Carolina Speedway at Rockingham, a record he now shares with series veteran Mark Martin
"I remember watching Mark win here before I was even racing stock cars," noted the race winner. "I am not big on milestones, but I'll take it."
McMurray, driving a one off event for Braun Racing qualified seventh and remained competitive throughout the afternoon. Following the final caution of the day, McMurray took advantage of Kevin Harvick, who was battling to keep Robby Gordon a lap down, opening the door for the race winning pass.
"It looked like Robby was trying to get his lap back and he shoved Kevin up out of the way," McMurray said. "It was just perfect for me, an easy pass." "Once you get out to the lead, it becomes a little bit harder because you don't have anyone to chase and it's a little harder to do for me. When you get out front, this place is so easy to over-drive"
The victory was the fifth series win for the Missouri native since he broke into the series in 2000.
Harvick, who finished third was less than amused with Gordon's driving.
"That was a lapped-down car sliding into a leader," Harvick said when asked about it. "You'll have to ask the guy holding the steering wheel. I haven't talked to him, it's a waste of air."
For his part, Gordon viewed it as a racing incident, and was pleased that Harvick took the time on the cool down to gesture toward him that he "was number one".
Finishing second was New Jersey Native Martin Truex Jr. Truex, who scored his first career pole at Daytona, only to become involved in a multi car wreck rebounded well at the Rock, leading sixty eight laps and scoring his second consecutive runner up finish at the one mile oval. "Just like last year, we needed about five more laps and just ran out of time," said Truex.
Rounding out the top five were Michael Waltrip (fourth), and last years championship runner up David Green.
The highest finishing rookie in the event was Hendrick driver Kyle Busch. Busch, who qualified fourteenth, got a lap down early in the running rallied late to finish seventh.
"We learned a lot. We came here with Nemco Motorsports last year and we ran here in the fall race and had a decent finish of seventh. I can't get out of seventh, I don't know. I can't qualify better than 14th, and I can't finish better than seventh but we'll figure it out one day."
Leaving the Rock, Kevin Harvick is the series point's leader, followed by Johnny Sauter, David Green, Robby Gordon, and Ron Hornaday.
Next week the series has a week off before heading out to Las Vegas for the Sam's Town 300 where Joe Nemechek is the defending race winner.
-by: Thomas Chemris