Sunday, November 13, 2011
Kobalt Tools 500 Race Recap
Kasey Kahne may have won the Kobalt Tools 500 run at Phoenix International Raceway for the penultimate race of the season ending an 81 winless streak, but all eyes were constantly glued to points’ leader Carl Edwards and second in points Tony Stewart. Stewart led the most laps but
Carl Edwards placed second to Stewart’s third. Coming into the final race of the Chase in
Homestead it is still either driver’s championship and the first time since 2003 that five time Champion Jimmie Johnson is not a factor in the outcome of the race.
Jeff Burton, who seemingly let Tony Stewart drive past to take third, brought home fourth. Ryan Newman closed the Top 5. A.J. Allmendinger turned in sixth, David Reutimann came in seventh. Aussie Marcos Ambrose who continues to find consistency on ovals placed eighth. Paul Menard finished ninth. Clint Bowyer sewed up the Top 10. Kyle Busch who ran his #18 JGR Toyota with the Interstate Batteries sponsorship in the wake of his actions in the World Camping Truck race from Texas last week, finished a disappointing 36th when his engine blew. More controversy erupted and was left unattended when Brian Vickers deliberately wrecked Matt Kenseth in payback for actions dating back to Martinsville. Only time will tell what NASCAR brass will do in reaction to Vickers’ wanton act of aggression in the wake of Kyle Busch’s outrageous actions. The difference, however slight, is Kyle Busch had broken the same rule three times in the same season. It will be interesting to see how Mike Helton handles this situation.
With the final race of the season in Homestead on deck Carl Edwards still has the slightest three point lead over Tony Stewart. Kevin Harvick maintains his third place, fifty-one points behind Edwards. Brad Keselowski picked up one spot occupying fourth. Jimmie Johnson also inched up one position for to take fifth. Matt Kenseth dropped two spots down to sixth. Dale Earnhardt Jr. held steady in seventh. Kurt Busch picked up one position for eighth. Ryan Newman surged up three spots for ninth. Denny Hamlin stayed put at tenth. Jeff Gordon dropped three positions to eleventh after a troubling 32nd place finish in Sunday’s race. Kyle Busch lost one spot placing him in twelfth.
The action moves to the last venue of the 2011 season, Homestead-Miami Speedway, for the Ford 400. All eyes will be tuning in to see if the Roush-Fenway Ford of Carl Edwards will be hoisting the NASCAR Sprint Cup or if the #14 Stewart-Haas Chevrolet of Tony Stewart will. Be sure to set your dial to ESPN on Sunday, November 20th at 3pm EST to watch this incredible season culminate with a new champion being crowned. Upon the conclusion of the race and the coronation of a new champ, join me back here for the Ford 400 Race Recap and my closing thoughts on this incredible season!
Posted by Chief 187 at 8:51 PM