Saturday, November 11, 2006
Matt Kenseth wins Phoenix Busch Series race
With Kevin Harvick already clinching the NASCAR Busch Series championship, we have to talk about other things at the Arizona Travel 200 at Phoenix. With a victory in today's race, Harvick would tie Sam Ard for most wins in a Busch Series season. Matt Kenseth won the pole and with his Nextel Cup car running poorly, we were wondering if he could use his Saturday car to help his Sunday car. Matt said no but he always says no.
Matt Kenseth-#17 Pennzoil Ford led the first part of the race. On lap 58, Bobby Labonte-#77 Dollar General Chevy breaks something and spins out to bring out a caution. Everyone pits and Clint Bowyer-#2 AC Delco Chevy beats Kenseth out of the pits for the lead. Kenseth gets the lead back by lap 70. On lap 104, Scott Wimmer-#66 Duraflame Ford cuts a tire and slams the wall. Paul Menard-#11 Menards Chevy slams into Wimmer. Most guys pit but Stephen Leicht-#90 Citi Financial Ford and five others stay out.
At this point, fuel mileage becomes an issue if the race stays green. Most guys can't make it to the end anyway. Shane Huffman-#88 US Navy Chevy is one of the guys who stayed out and he takes the lead on lap 115. He battles with Clint Bowyer for the lead but Bowyer has fresh tires and gets the lead. Huffman finished 9th. When Paul Menard cuts a tire and hits the wall on lap 171, fuel mileage is out of the equation and everyone pits.
Carl Edwards-#60 Ameriquest Ford gets two tires to get the lead. Matt Kenseth is second. Kevin Harvick-#21 Coast Guard Chevy, Clint Bowyer & Shane Huffman all have trouble on pit road. Kenseth gets the lead back on lap 180. Harvick is second. On lap 195, Kenny Wallace-#22 Auto Zone Ford is bumped into the wall by Jay Sauter-#01 Western Union Chevy and Danny O'Quinn-#60 World Financial Ford is collected. It looks like Sauter wasn't aware that Wallace was on his outside. This sets up a green/white/checker finish and Kenseth holds off Harvick for the win. We'll find out Sunday if this win helps Kenseth's run at the Nextel Cup Championship.