Sunday, September 10, 2006
Harvick wins, Kahne's in, Stewart's out
Going into the Chevy Rock & Roll 400 NASCAR Nextel Cup race at Richmond, Kasey Kahne was in 11th place 30 points out of tenth. He knew that he would have to have a big finish to get in and also hope that one of the top ten would have enough problems for him to overtake one of them. It was very close from 4th to 11th so anything was possible. Denny Hamlin won the pole.
Things got off to a bad start for Tony Stewart-#20 Home Depot Chevy when he crashed during Friday's practice and had to bring out the backup car. Stewart qualified 40th but would the car handle well enough for him to get to the front? Kevin Harvick-#29 GM Goodwrench/Barenaked Ladies Chevy controls the first part of the race. Jimmie Johnson-#48 Lowe's Chevy has trouble when Carl Edwards-#99 Office Depot Ford gets loose and both spin out on lap 80. Both are able to continue but Johnson finishes 23rd. A fast pit stop for Matt Kenseth-#17 DeWalt Ford gets him the lead.
A yellow comes out when Martin Truex Jr-Bass Pro Shops Chevy has a flat tire on lap 118 and Kyle Busch-#5 Kellogg's Chevy gets the lead with a quick pit stop. Busch swaps the lead with Kevin Harvick and Kasey Kahne-#9 UAW/Dodge Dealers Dodge is in the mix and moves into 10th in the points. Tony Stewart is having trouble with his throttle and drops out of the top ten in points. Then Denny Hamlin-#11 FedEx Chevy reports that his engine is failing. Can he hang on and finish? Meanwhile, Dale Earnhardt Jr-#8 Budweiser Chevy makes contact with Ryan Newman-#12 Alltel Dodge and Jeff Gordon-#24 Dupont Chevy is having brake problems. If any of these guys drop out, he's out of The Chase.
Jimmie Johnson spins again on lap 320. When he tries to get going, Jeff Green-#66 AOL.com Goldrush Chevy slams into him as payback for spinning Green out earlier. Green is parked by NASCAR for this and further penalties are expected. Kyle Busch continues to lead and Dale Earnhardt Jr. has no rear brakes. He finished 16th. Denny Hamlin holds on and finishes 15th. Jeff Gordon finishes 31st. Tony Stewart is 18th and needs to pass five cars to get into The Chase as Kasey Kahne is running 3rd. Harvick passes Busch on lap 399 for the win. Kahne is 3rd and is in. Stewart is 18th and is out.
Congratulations to Kevin Harvick, crew chief Todd Berrier and car owner Richard Childress. Kasey Kahne did exactly what he had to do to get in The Chase. Big top ten finishes for Dave Blaney, Ken Schrader & Scott Riggs. The ten guys in The Chase are Matt Kenseth, Jimmie Johnson, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Mark Martin, Jeff Burton, Jeff Gordon & Kasey Kahne. Defending Nextel Cup champ Tony Stewart is on the outside looking in. The Chase starts next week in New Hampshire. Here's the top tewn of the race.
1.29/Kevin Harvick/GM Goodwrench-Barenaked Ladies/Chevy/Richard Childress
2.5/Kyle Busch/Kellogg's/Chevy/Rick Hendrick
3.9/Kasey Kahne/UAW-Dodge Dealers/Dodge/Ray Evernham
4.22/Dave Blaney/CAT Engines/Dodge/Bill Davis
5.6/Mark Martin/AAA/Ford/Jack Roush
6.16/Greg Biffle/National Guard/Jack Roush
7.21/Ken Schrader/US Air Force/Ford/Wood Bros.
8.17/Matt Kenseth/DeWalt Tools/Ford/Jack Roush
9.31/Jeff Burton/Cingular/Chevy/Richard Childress
10.10/Scott Riggs/Auto Value-Bumper To Bumper/Dodge/Ray Evernham