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The Pit Stop


May 3, 2009 3:01 AM

Birthday boy Kyle wins the race

Bad weather stayed away after drivers took to the short track at Richmond for the Crown Royal Presents the Russ Friedman 400.  Brian Vickers has the poll for the race and it is his second poll of the year.

"I love this race track," said Clint Boyer.  He also stated that the car has a lot of adjustability in it.

Martin Truex Jr. said that four tires are going to be more important for the Sprint Cup cars.

Rain that fell down earlier in the day was causing track-drying to occur right before the start of the race, but the cars started on time.  That led to the first green/yellow start of the year that lasted until the green flag dropped on lap 7.

It was only a couple of green flag laps though and on lap ten the yellow flag was out again for a Dave Blaney crash.  This finally led to the first long green flag run of the night.

At lap 23 Jeff Gordon finally got a full car length lead in the race.  During the next fifty green flag laps it was Kyle and Kurt Busch both moving up the field.  At lap 73 it was Denny Hamlin moving into the lead for the first time.

Green flag pit stops started to occur around lap 90. Brian Vickers wound up missing the entrance pit road during this time. After the pit stops cycled through Denny Was back in the lead of the race.

The caution finally came out at lap 115 for a Jeremy Mayfield crash.  The leaders came in and Clint Boyer with a two-tire stop won the race off pit road.  Getting a speeding violation was Jimmie Johnson and picking up a tire violation was David Reutimann.

It did not last long after the green flag dropped and at lap 125 Denny Hamlin was back in the lead.  Kurt Busch finally got the lead again on lap 145.  The caution then popped out at lap 150 for a Kasey Kahne spin. All the leaders pitted and Denny Hamlin won the race off pit road.

It was not along green flag run this time and at lap 167 David Stremme gets into Carl Edwards spinning him out which also caused Jamie McMurray to spin out as well.

The next green flag run was not that long as well and on lap 191 the caution came out for Jimmie Johnson as he spins out due to no breaks.  At the restart the black flag for comes out for Jimmie Johnson as he restarts in the wrong position.

At lap 211 it was Dale Jr. hitting Jeff Burton which caused him to spin out.  This caution brought in the leaders and it was Ryan Newamn winning the race off pit road.  At lap 218 it was Martin Truex Jr. finally getting to lead some laps.

Six more laps go by and it was Kyle Busch who is pissed off at Brian Vickers gives him some bumps in the back. Twelve laps later and Ryan Newman took the lead back.  At lap 249 it was a hard charging Denny Hamlin back into the lead of the race.

The caution for debris finally came out at lap 273.  Ryan Newman won the race off pit road while Denny Hamlin came out in eighth due to lug nut problems.   It was another short green flag run and at lap 285 it was Greg Biffle helping bring out the caution for his spinning car.

At the drop of the green flag on lap 292 it was Kevin Harvick blowing a tire brining out the caution.  The green flag drops and Kyle Busch goes on the outside to try to get the lead of the race from Ryan Newman.  Kyle got the lead at lap 300, but it did not last long though. At lap 306 it was Sam Hornish Jr. spinning out Marcos Ambose.

The leaders come in, but Jeff Gordon though stays out.  The green flag drops and it was Ryan Newman hitting Mark Martin spinning him out.  With no place to go was Martin Truex Jr. picking up some front-end damage.

With 75 laps left the next caution comes out as Bobby Labonte and David Stremme get together. With nowhere to go was Jimmie Johnson and Kasey Kahne.  At the time of the caution it was Jeff Gordon in the lead with Carl Edwards in second.  Denny Hamlin was in fifth.

With 55 laps left Kyle Busch moved into third while Bobby Labonte spins out at the start/finish line to bring out the caution.  The green flag dropped with 50 laps left and Kyle Busch quickly moved passed Carl Edwards for second.  Then in a couple laps it was Kyle back in the lead of the race.

With 44 laps left it was David Reutimann spinning out with help from Brian Vickers. This caution tied the record for most cautions.  After the green flag drops Kyle Busch breaks out to a big lead.

With 17 laps left Tony Stewart passed Jeff Burton for second but was over 3 second behind Kyle for the lead.  Tony started to close in on Kyle, but could not do anything as the birthday boy Kyle Busch win the race. Cale Yarborough is the only other driver to pull off this feat and he did it twice.

"Another big win this year," said Kyle Busch. He stated that this car was not perfect.

Tony Stewart said he got luck and got tires with about 50 laps to go.  "Awesome night for us."

Jeff Gordon leaves Richmond with the points lead over Kurt Busch, but it is only 10 points.

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