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The Pit Stop


July 12, 2009 4:27 AM

Four for Mark.

Sprint Cup drivers have back for a second week in arrow of night race racing.  This time it is at Chicagoland for the LifeLock.com 400.

"We got a good Miller Lite Dodge tonight, "said Kurt Busch.  Balanced car," saud Jimmie Johnson.

The green flag drops and we have the first long green flag run of the night.  Brian Vickers was able to get out to a 1 second lead in a hurry, but Jimmie Johnson was able run him down and pass him for the lead on lap 10.

During this green flag it was Tony Stewart marching his way up the field and into the top 20.

He was able to keep the lead and started to put some cars a lap down and the caution came out on lap 39 for debris.

This brought in the all the leaders and Mark Martin was able to get the lead off pit road.  The green flag dropped again and this was an even longer green flag run.  Mark kept the lead and then started to put a whole bunch of cars a lap down.

During this run Kyle Busch and his car turned to junk, almost crashing in the wall a couple of times, and Mark got to put him down a lap.  Then it got even worse for Kyle Busch later on in the race as he went down one cylinder.  

At lap 94 it was the start of green flag pit stops and Mark Martin was able to keep it after pit stops were over. Green flag racing continued until lap 131 and the second caution of night for debris came out. By this time over half of the field was at least one lap down.

The leaders pitted and it was Mark Martin winning the race off pit road again.  Then it was back to another long green flag run with Mark leading more and more laps with Jimmie Johnson stuck in second.

At lap 138 it was Jeff Gordon and Carl Edwards getting together. They did not bring out the caution, but the near wreck did cause them to loose around 10 spots.  Carl was able to rebound back more from this incident than Jeff Gordon.

At lap 178 it was Tony Stewart passing Kasey Kahne for third.

Lap 186 saw green flag pit stops again, by this time it was a three second lead for Mark Martin over Jimmie Johnson.  After the pit stop ended it was Mark Martin in firth with Jimmie Johnson in second, but Tony Stewart was out in fifth.

Jimmie Johnson though started to gain some life and got the lead to Mark down to under 2 second. It did not last long though and Mark was back up to a 3 second plus lead.

The third caution in a row for debris finally came out on lap 211.  The leaders pitted for service and Mark barely beat out Jimmie for the lead of the race.  Tony Stewart with an awful pit stop had to come in a second time for a missing lug nut.

Mark had another good restart, but this green flag run was really short and at lap 218 it was Sam Hornish Jr. spinning out to bring out caution number four.  Sam stated Joey Logano was racing him hard and got into him

This caution only brought in a couple cars to pit.

This time on the restart Jimmie Johnson got the better restart and took the lead of the race.  This was another short green flag run and on lap 226 Paul Menard looses a tire, spins out and then Jeff Burton, Jamie McMurray and Scott Speed get involved.

Jeff Burton stated that this is the fourth week in a row that he has been wrecked due to the double file restart rule.

During the caution laps it was Tony Stewart back down pit road more than once.

Jimmie got another solid restart and kept the lead of the race.  Brian Vickers though was able to get around Mark and take second place.  Jimmie then started to push his lead to over 1 second.

With 21 laps left David Reutimann and Juan Pablo Montoya got together.  David then gets into the wall enough to bring out the caution.  This caution did bring the back 50% of the cars on the lead lap.

Jimmie got a great restart due to Denny Hamlin. Denny then got Jimmie loose enough to take the lead of the race.  Then it was Brian Vickers having the lead briefly.  Mark Martin then got the momentum on his side to take the lead back again.  Jimmie Johnson fell back to fifth.

In the back it got really messy and Brad Keselowski got the worst of it and got a massive tire rub sending him off the lead lap and two laps down.

With seven laps left it was the complete end to Kyle Busch and his car and he brought out the next caution.

The green/white checker flags flies and Mark Martin with the great restart took the lead of the race.  He was able to go on and win his fourth win of the season.  Mark with 195 laps led was the most laps ever for a winner of this race.

"I had some nice restarts tonight," said Mark Martin.  "That was fun."

"We had a good car," said Jeff Gordon.  Jeff Stated he spun the tires on the last restart.
 
The team did awesome said Kasey Kahne.

"We got run into again," said Kurt Busch.  He stated that his is loosing faith in Jimmie Johnson as a three time champ.  Jimmie on the incident he stated it was just hard racing.

After the race was over not much changed at the top of the standings.  Tony Stewart was still leading Jeff Gordon by 175 points.

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