It was another hot night in California with two full races left before all the chase participants have been decided. Kurt Busch who has been super hot as of late has the poll for the Sharp AQUOS 500.
Kurt stated that it was too hot to get a good read on this racetrack. “Really good in race trim,” said Kevin Harvick.
The first 100 laps of the race had a tough time getting into a long green flag run. Cars brining out cautions in that time period included Joe Nemechek, Mike Bliss, Robby Gordon, and Elliott Sadler. The worst of the cautions came out on lap 39 as a tire blew big time on the Michael Waltrip car causing a massive fire to erupt. He got out of the car as fast as he could. “Left front tire blew out,” said Michael Waltrip.
Major lap leaders in the first 100 laps included Kyle and Kurt Busch.
The next 100 laps saw the first green flag pit stops on the night. Those started to occur with around 100 laps to go. The big caution in the time period happened with 71 laps go that involved Jeff Gordon, David Reuitmann, Jeremy Mayfield, David Gilliland, and Ricky Rudd. The best three cars in these 100 laps were Kyle Busch, Jeff Burton, and Jimmy Johnson.
With 50 laps to go Kimmy Johnson leads with Kyle Busch is second and Jeff Burton in third. By this time Ryan Newman and his car was done for the night “Something let go”, said Ryan. “Disappointing day for us.” This finished killed any shot for him to make the chase.
Around 40 laps to go and cars are making just the second green flag pit stop of the night. Jeff Gordon and Tony Stewart stayed out as long as they could. Tony finally pitted with 23 laps to go. A couple more laps go by and Jimmy Johnson was finally back in the lead of the race.
With 15 laps to go Carl Edwards moved into second place ands quickly closing in on Jimmy Johnson. With nine laps to go Jimmy had around a 1.2 second lead, but traffic help Jimmy Johnson to the win of the race and first spot in the chase.
At the end of this race 8 drivers are fully in the chase.
“Special day,” Jimmy Johnnson.
“Running second is terrible,” said Carl Edwards. “Congratulations to Jimmy.”
“Tired, real tired,” said Dale Jr. He finished in 5th and is 128 points back of 12th place in the points.