WM: Kahne battles Stewart in Turkey Night GP

IRWINDALE, CA (November 23) -- Kasey Kahne would dearly love to be Tony Stewart's teammate in several years. He battled the 1999 NASCAR Winston Cup Rookie of the Year Thursday in the 60th Annual Home Depot Turkey Night Grand Prix and almost ...

IRWINDALE, CA (November 23) -- Kasey Kahne would dearly love to be Tony Stewart's teammate in several years. He battled the 1999 NASCAR Winston Cup Rookie of the Year Thursday in the 60th Annual Home Depot Turkey Night Grand Prix and almost won. Kahne, who wants to follow Stewart from the United States Auto Club into NASCAR Winston Cup competition, was a Steve Lewis teammate of Stewart and fast-qualifier Jason Leffler in the 100-lap MCI WorldCom Midget Car Series season finale. Kasey led 36 laps on his way to a second-place finish. Stewart, a two-time USAC midget champion, led the first 38 laps before Kahne passed him. Kahne, the 2000 series champion led laps 39- 74 before Stewart returned the favor. "I was not the fastest car tonight, especially when my fuel got low," Stewart admitted. "I really didn't think I could catch Kasey after he got by me and stretched out his lead. On the final restart, I dove low to get out of the oil dropped in the upper groove and got a bite. I got by Kasey who was spinning his tires in the oil and was able to hold on. My only chance to get him was to miss the oil, and it worked." The 20-year-old driver from Enumclaw, WA, held off Coors Light Silver Bullet Series champion Tracy Hines for second place. Leffler finished fourth, ahead of Michael Lewis. Kahne and Stewart tied for the fourth-fastest qualifying lap -- 105.195 m.p.h. -- but Kasey recorded his first. Kahne's second straight runner-up run gave him the Arizona Sport Shirts National Midget Driver of the Year championship. He finished the season 151 points ahead of Jay Drake. The evening was bittersweet for Drake, who opened the evening with a flag-to-flag victory in the MCI WorldCom TQ Midget Car feature. It was his 19th victory of the season, tying the USAC single-season record held by A.J. Foyt and Sleepy Tripp. Later, in his bid to break the record, Drake suffered a broken timing gear during the 46th lap. ESPN2 will televise all the action Sunday at 10 p.m. Eastern Time.

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Series USAC
Drivers Tony Stewart , Jason Leffler , Kasey Kahne , Michael Lewis , Tracy Hines , Jay Drake , A.J. Foyt