Ben Kennedy leads both XFINITY Series practices in Iowa
Practice 1 results " Practice 2 results Ben Kennedy topped the leaderboard in Friday’s final XFINITY Series practice at Iowa Speedway at 133.809 mph in the No. 2 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet. Kennedy , who is making his XFINITY Series debut in Sunday’s American Ethanol E15 250 (1:30 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), also led Friday’s first practice, for a practice-session sweep. RELATED: Decker sisters attempting NXS debut In the final practice, Brendan Gaughan was second-fastest in the No. 62 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet at 132.542 mph. Rounding out the top five were Sam Hornish Jr . in the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, Erik Jones in the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, and Alex Bowman in the No. 88 JR Motorsports Chevrolet. Teammates Suarez and Jones made contact about midway through the second practice, causing some damage to both the front bumper of Suarez’s No. 19 Toyota and to the rear bumper of Jones’s No. 20 Toyota. Both were able to continue. Just a couple hours earlier, Kennedy led the first practice at 132.448 mph, followed by Hornish Jr. at 131.772 mph. Rounding out the top five in that session were Jones , Elliott Sadler in the No. 1 JR Motorsports Chevrolet, and XFINITY Series points leader and recent race winner Daniel Suarez in the No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.
Harraka and Kennedy rough first start
Paulie Harraka and Alex Kennedy get together before rolling off for the warm up laps in the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway.
RCR, Menards renew partnership in XFINITY Series
BUY TICKETS: See the Daytona 500 live! WELCOME, N.C. -- Looking to continue building success both on and off the track, Menards has renewed its partnership with Richard Childress Racing 's NASCAR XFINITY Series program for a fifth year. Menards will serve as a primary sponsor for select races throughout the 2017 season with Paul Menard and Ben Kennedy driving the No. 2 Chevrolet and Brandon Jones in the No. 33 Chevrolet. "We are excited that the 2017 season is upon us," said Jeff Abbott, Menards spokesperson. "We look forward to once again partnering with RCR, Paul Menard , Ben Kennedy and Brandon Jones in the XFINITY Series, and having three quality race car drivers working hard as teammates and competitors. Our tremendous group of racing partners look forward to seeing Paul, Ben and Brandon in Victory Lane." Menard will be back behind the wheel of the No. 2 Menards/Richmond Chevrolet Camaro for select XFINITY Series races during the 2017 season, while also competing full-time in the No. 27 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series for RCR. The Eau Claire, Wisconsin, native has a strong history of success in the XFINITY Series, having captured three wins, six pole awards, 38 top-five and 93 top-10 finishes. Twenty-year-old Brandon Jones and the No. 33 Chevrolet Camaro also will be carrying the Menards banner again alongside the Menard's No. 2 Chevrolet. The Atlanta native qualified for the inaugural XFINITY Series Chase last season, while securing 17 top-11 finishes, to end 2016 10th in the XFINITY Series points standings and third in the Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings. As RCR's full-time driver of the No. 33 Chevrolet Camaro in the XFINITY Series, Jones is prepared to turn all that he learned and accomplished in his rookie year into consistently high performances throughout his sophomore season. Ben Kennedy , coming to RCR from the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series , also will pilot the No. 2 Menards Chevrolet Camaro at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on July 15. The 25-year-old made his XFINITY Series debut last season with RCR at Iowa Speedway , in which he secured a 10th place finish, and will compete in select races in the No. 2 Chevrolet throughout the 2017 season. "Menards continues to showcase their commitment and dedication to both RCR and the NASCAR XFINITY Series with the renewed support for Paul Menard , Brandon Jones and Ben Kennedy ," said Richard Childress, CEO and Chairman of Richard Childress Racing . "It's great to feature such a winning company and their variety of vendor-partners both on and off the track and we hope to continue their success this season." Since the 1970s, Menards has a strong history as a racing sponsor, which includes a win in the 2011 Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway with driver Paul Menard . A family-owned company started in 1960 and headquartered in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, Menards has 305 retail store locations throughout the Midwest.
RCR tabs Ben Kennedy for XFINITY Series races
BUY TICKETS: See the Daytona 500 live! WELCOME, N.C. -- Rheem, Menards and Richard Childress Racing (RCR) are committed to championing the NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) charge to be the series where "names are made," and each have long histories of supporting aspiring drivers at local short tracks to NASCAR's feeder series. Ben Kennedy will be the latest up-and-coming driver to be given that opportunity when he climbs into the No. 2 Chevrolet Camaro for nine NXS races, the first of which will be at Talladega Superspeedway this spring. Kennedy has worked his way up through the NASCAR development ladder. In 2016, he competed full-time in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and secured his first NASCAR national touring series win at Bristol Motor Speedway in August. He also finished 10th in his NXS debut last season at Iowa Speedway , driving the No. 2 Ruud Chevrolet for RCR. "I am looking forward to working with Rheem, Menards and the No. 2 XFINITY Series team," said Kennedy . "I'm thrilled that well-respected brands like Rheem and Menards are willing to lend their support and provide the opportunity to prove what I can do. I may not have the experience that Cup Series drivers do, but I'm confident that I have what it takes to get to Victory Lane." RCR Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers Austin Dillon and Paul Menard understand the need to develop young talent and continue growing the sport. Both made the decision to give up seat time in the No. 2 Chevrolet Camaro to provide Kennedy the opportunity to gain valuable experience. "I cut my teeth in the XFINITY Series," said Dillon, 2013 NXS champion. "If it hadn't been for the success I experienced in both the Truck Series and the XFINITY Series, I wouldn't be driving in the Cup Series now. I understand how important it is to give younger drivers a chance to make a name for themselves and gain valuable experience. They can't prove themselves unless someone gives them a shot, and I'm glad that Rheem and Menards want to provide Ben that opportunity." "It is great that our partners recognize the value in developing young drivers," said Menard. "They are the future of NASCAR and need to be given chances to race in good equipment at the front of the field. This is a big opportunity for Ben, and I know he's going to make the most of it with Rheem and Menards on board. He has a lot of talent and this is his chance to show everyone what he's got." Dillon, Menard and Kennedy will share the No. 2 Chevrolet Camaro throughout the 2017 season. The XFINITY Series kicks off at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, Feb. 25 on FS1. A full series schedule can be found at NASCAR.com, and tickets can be purchased at NASCAR.com/tickets .
Daytona president, Chip Wile named on SBJ's 'Forty Under 40' list
BUY TICKETS: See the Daytona 500 live! MORE: Closest Daytona finishes " Daytona story lines DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Chip Wile, the youngest President of Daytona International Speedway , was recognized today as a recipient of SportsBusiness Journal's (SBJ) Forty Under 40 honor. Chosen from among an initial candidate list of more than 500, Wile will receive the award on April 20 at the Forty Under 40 Gala at the Monarch Beach Resort in Dana Point, California. Forty Under 40 recognizes excellence and innovation among young sports executives nationwide. MORE: Wile appointed Daytona track president " Wile accepts award "This is an incredible honor," Wile said. "I have been so blessed in my career thus far being surrounded by talented professionals who share the same passion and admiration for motorsports. As president of Daytona International Speedway , I am fortunate to work with a remarkable team both at the Speedway and ISC who have a passion and dedication for creating unparalleled experiences for our guests. It's their hard work that makes the World's Only Motorsports Stadium the most fan-friendly, hands-on experience in all of sports." Wile will embark on his first Speedweeks and Daytona 500 as President of Daytona International Speedway beginning February 18, but he led the first major motorsports event of the season and North America's most prestigious sports car race when the Rolex 24 At Daytona kicked off Jan. 28. MORE: Daytona through the years " Rolex 24 history "I have said this all along about Chip -- he brings a wealth of talent and energy to the track president position," said ISC CEO Lesa France Kennedy . "His leadership style is always to place others first -- whether his team or his community, but in all cases, the fans. I couldn't be happier for him to receive this honor." Wile spent the first 10 years of his career working with NASCAR race teams, then joined Motor Racing Network (MRN) as director of business development and just one year later, was appointed President of Darlington Raceway where he spearheaded a five-year strategy to reinvent the facility with its throwback thematic. MORE: ' 16 Darlington schemes " Darlington announces '17 throwback theme Tickets for the 2017 Daytona 500 and Speedweeks can be purchased online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP. Fans can also follow NASCAR on Twitter and stay up to speed on the latest news by using #DAYTONA500 and #SPEEDWEEKS. Stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest and Snapchat, and by downloading the Speedway's mobile app, for the latest Speedway news throughout the season. &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
Numbers crunch: Can Logano, Busch keep trend?
BUY TICKETS: See the Daytona 500 live! While we understand this may be more of a coincidence than a correlation, results from the season-opening Advance Auto Parts Clash could be an accurate predictor for a championship push. Since the postseason format shifted to an elimination-style setup prior to the 2014 season, one finisher in the top three of the season-opening, non-points race has advanced to the four-driver Championship Round at Miami. That's good news for Sunday's winner Joey Logano , runner-up Kyle Busch and third place … uh, Alex Bowman . Bowman doesn't have a full-time ride for 2017, so while he filled in beautifully for Dale Earnhardt Jr . in "The Clash," we don't expect him in the championship round. That leaves Logano and Busch as the drivers looking to carry the torch here, and they are two perfect candidates. In three postseasons, Busch (2016, 2015) and Logano (2016, 2014) have each made it to the championship battle twice. Both were in the field last year when Jimmie Johnson sped to his record-tying seventh title. Here's a look back at the previous three years in the Advance Auto Parts Clash: 201 6 1. Denny Hamlin 2. Joey Logano (Made Championship 4) 3. Paul Menard 2015 1. Matt Kenseth 2. Martin Truex Jr . (Made Championship 4) 3. Carl Edwards 2014 1. Denny Hamlin (Made Championship 4) 2. Brad Keselowski 3. Kyle Busch
Get ready for the Daytona 500 with driver interviews
BUY TICKETS: See the Daytona 500 live! " Speedweeks schedule Drivers take center stage starting at 8:30 a.m. ET Wednesday for the Media Day live stream presented by NAPA as excitement builds toward Sunday's Daytona 500 . Don't miss any of the stories, banter and laughs as NASCAR.com live streams the event til 3:30 p.m. ET. Watch here . Hosts Jonathan Merryman and Kim Coon will talk with drivers about the Daytona 500 and the 2017 season. Here's the event lineup (all times Eastern): 8:30 a.m.: Aric Almirola 8:40 a.m.: Austin Dillon , Matt DiBenedetto 8:45 a.m.: Chris Buescher 8:50 a.m.: Joey Gase BREAK (35 min) 9:35 a.m.: Michael McDowell , AJ Allmendinger 9:40 a.m.: David Gilliland 9:45 a.m.: Joey Logano BREAK (25 min) 10:20 a.m.: Chip Wile 10:30 a.m.: Brendan Gaughan , Darrell Wallace Jr . 10:35 a.m.: Cole Custer 10:40 a.m.: Blake Koch 10:50 a.m.: Brennan Poole 11:05 a.m.: Dale Earnhardt Jr . 11:10 a.m.: Daniel Hemric , Brandon Jones 11:20 a.m.: Spencer Gallagher , Ben Kennedy BREAK (1 hr. 40 min) 1:10 p.m.: Ryan Blaney 1:20 p.m.: Chase Elliott 1:50 p.m.: Kevin Harvick 1:55 p.m.: Justin Allgaier , Michael Annett 2 p.m.: John Hunter Nemechek , Denny Hamlin 2:10 p.m.: Ty Dillon , Matt Kenseth , Kurt Busch 2:20 p.m.: Landon Cassill , Kasey Kahne BREAK (15 min) 2:45 p.m.: Erik Jones BREAK (10 min) 3:05 p.m.: Ryan Reed BREAK (5 min) 3:15 p.m.: Brad Keselowski
The Rundown: Watkins Glen driver grades
RELATED: Complete race results " Updated Chase Grid Breaking down the full field for the Cheez-It 355 at The Glen at Watkins Glen International : 1. Denny Hamlin , No. 11 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Six weeks after making a mistake on the final turn at Sonoma that cost him his first road-course victory, Hamlin triumphs at Watkins Glen. This time, he capitalized on the mistakes of others and led the final 10 laps for his second victory of the season. Grade: A+ 2. Joey Logano , No. 22 Ford, Team Penske . Despite a pit-road speeding penalty on Lap 34 and right-front damage, Logano worked his way back through the field for his fourth consecutive top 10 at Watkins Glen. Grade: A 3. Brad Keselowski , No. 2 Ford, Team Penske . Keselowski and Kyle Busch restarted in the front row with 10 laps to go, but both overshot Turn 1 opening the door for Denny Hamlin . That wasn't Keselowski's final mistake. Running third entering the final turn, he turned second-place Martin Truex Jr . when a crossover move went awry. Grade: B 4. AJ Allmendinger , No. 47 Chevrolet, JTG Daugherty Racing . Sunday was a day of extreme highs and lows for Allmendinger. A pit-road speeding penalty on Lap 26 cost him terrific track position. Then he just missed getting collected in the big wreck on Lap 54. But instead of being elated for tying a personal best with his second top five of the season, he was disconsolate after punting Kyle Larson just before the finish line. "I turned him," said Allmendinger, searching for words. "Not on purpose. ... I'm not very happy with myself on that. I don't want to do that, especially for fourth place at the end. … I just cost Kyle a good finish. I'm just pissed off at myself." More on Larson's 29th-place finish later. Grade: B 5. Tony Stewart , No. 14 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Stewart posted his eighth top-five finish in his 16th and final start at Watkins Glen. It also was his fifth top five in his past seven starts. Stewart is smokin'. Grade: A 6. Kyle Busch , No. 18 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Busch was in prime position to vie for his third victory at Watkins Glen when he restarted from the front row with 10 laps to go. Instead, he overshot the first turn along with race leader Brad Keselowski , handing an opportunity to Hamlin. Grade: A- 7. Martin Truex Jr ., No. 78 Toyota, Furniture Row Racing . Truex was running second coming to the final turn when he was turned by Brad Keselowski . The two talked after the race. "He said it was his fault," Truex said. "I said, 'I knew that.' Simple as that." Pretty much sums up Truex's sixth top 10 in 11 starts at Watkins Glen. Grade: A 8. Jamie McMurray , No. 1 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. Big, big day for McMurray, whose finish -- his first top 10 at the Glen since 2010 -- was ahead of all his competition on the Chase bubble. Grade: A 9. Trevor Bayne , No. 6 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Bayne was another bubble winner. He climbed a spot in the Chase standings to 17th, but more important, he picked up 20 points on 16th-place Kyle Larson and now trails Larson by eight points with four races to go before the Chase field is set. Grade: A 10. Matt Kenseth , No. 20 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . How's this for tidy? Making his 600th start, Kenseth posted his 300th top 10. Grade: A 11. Kurt Busch , No. 41 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Busch had a solid finish, but it was no match for his Olympic Team USA-inspired shoes. Grade: US-B 12. Casey Mears , No. 13 Chevrolet, Germain Racing . Mears weaved his way through the carnage of the big wreck on Lap 54 to tie his best finish of the season (12th last month at Daytona). Grade: A 13. Chase Elliott , No. 24 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Elliott stemmed his recent string of bad finishes with his best finish since coming in second at Michigan two months ago. Grade: B 14. Jeff Gordon , No. 88 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Gordon overcame heavy damage to the nose of the No. 88 on Lap 4 and later just missed getting collected by Ricky Stenhouse Jr .'s spinning car in the big wreck on Lap 54 to post his second top 15 in three starts since coming out of retirement to sub for Dale Earnhardt Jr . Grade: B 15. Carl Edwards , No. 19 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Edwards started from the pole and led the first 25 laps but was hit with a penalty on his first pit stop for a wayward tire. Being deep in the field with a fast car is not where you want to be on a road course, and Edwards paid for it when he was collected in a wreck with 34 laps to go. Grade: B- 16. Ryan Newman , No. 31 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Newman was running 20th on the restart after the sixth caution when the No. 31 got loose and spun out. Attrition helped Newman record his sixth top-16 finish in his past seven starts at Watkins Glen. Grade: B- 17. Michael McDowell , No. 95 Chevrolet, Circle Sport- Leavine Family Racing . McDowell recorded his best finish in eight starts at Watkins Glen and his third-best finish this season. Grade: A 18. Clint Bowyer , No. 15 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . Bowyer suffered front-end damage in a wreck with 34 laps to go but still posted one of his better finishes of the season. Grade: B 19. Ryan Blaney , No. 21 Ford, Wood Brothers Racing . Blaney remained in the thick of the Chase race despite a pit-road speeding penalty on Lap 22 and running off the track into the grass 20 laps later. Grade: C 20. Kasey Kahne , No. 5 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Kahne simply was not competitive, and a penalty because the No. 5 crew was over the wall too soon on the first caution didn't help. But the numbers don't lie: Kahne spent a grand total of three laps in the top 15. Still, Kahne is only 10 points behind Kyle Larson for 16th in the Chase standings. Grade: C- 21. Danica Patrick , No. 10 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Patrick led a career-high 11 laps (previous best was seven at Talladega in October 2014), but she was running in her normal midpack position when she was caught up in Paul Menard 's dirt storm on Lap 84 and sustained heavy damage. Grade: B- 22. Paul Menard , No. 27 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing. Speaking of Menard ... the No. 27 team was penalized for throwing its fuel can on Lap 49, but the team's biggest faux pas came when its driver ran off the course on Lap 84 and spewed dirt onto the track, forcing enough cars behind him to drive blindly and lose grip to cause a seven-car wreck, bringing out the eighth caution and second red flag of the day. Grade: D 23. Landon Cassill , No. 38 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Despite spinning out in the grass in the bus stop and bringing out the fifth caution for the debris he left on the track, Cassill tied his best finish at Watkins Glen. Grade: C 24. Boris Said , No. 32 Ford, Go Fas Racing . It wouldn't be Watkins Glen without Boris Said in the field. Making his 16th start at The Glen, Said posted his 10th top-25 finish. Grade: C 25. Brian Scott , No. 44 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . Scott's first Sprint Cup start at Watkins Glen produced a better finish than the first Glen starts of Kyle Busch (33rd), Jeff Gordon (31st), Kurt Busch (29th) and Martin Truex Jr . (28th). That's something to hang your helmet on. Grade: B 26. Josh Wise , No. 30 Chevrolet, The Motorsports Group. Wise got his best finish in three starts at Watkins Glen. He finished 38th in the previous two (2012, 2014). Grade: B 27. Aric Almirola , No. 43 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . A pit-road penalty on the No. 43 team for being over the wall too soon on the first pit stop and the wreck on Paul Menard 's dirt spray contributed to Almirola's worst finish at Watkins Glen since 2013. Grade: C- 28. Cole Whitt , No. 98 Chevrolet, Premium Motorsports. Witt could not improve on his 21st-place finish last year at Watkins Glen despite starting 22nd. Grade: C 29. Kyle Larson , No. 42 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. Larson was easily the biggest loser Sunday. He had a fourth-place finish in the bag until he was punted by AJ Allmendinger short of the finish line. Instead his car hit the wall and was destroyed. The 24-point difference between fifth and 29th has huge Chase implications. As it stands, Larson is 16th in the Chase standings but by a mere eight points over Trevor Bayne . And as far as moving up, Larson is 30 points behind Jamie McMurray instead of five. (Larson would have finished ahead of McMurray, dropping him to ninth Sunday.) As for the apologetic Allmendinger, he "has got a few coming," Larson said. Grade: A 30. Chris Buescher , No. 34 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . A big mistake (pit-road penalty for tossing a fuel can) and bad luck (getting caught up in Paul Menard 's dirt storm) were tempered because the driver he's competing with for 30th in the points standings, David Ragan , also was collected in the Lap 84 wreck. At one point Sunday, Buescher was 13 points behind Ragan. Because of the wreck, he finished the day three back with four races remaining to get into the top 30 and qualify for the Chase. Grade: C 31. Austin Dillon , No. 3 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Dillon was involved in two wrecks (Lap 4 and Lap 54), with the latter bringing out the first red flag and being a difference maker for the No. 3 team. When Dillon returned to the track, all the sheet metal from the front of the car was gone, but with a spot in the Chase on the line, every point matters. He dropped two spots to 14th in the Chase standings but caught a big break when Kyle Larson was wrecked. Dillon leads 16th-place Larson by 39 points. Grade: C- 32. Kevin Harvick , No. 4 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Harvick was running third with 30 laps to go when he went to pit road because of a flat-spotted tire. He came out 33rd, the last car on the lead lap. The extra pit stop made him vulnerable to midpack mishaps, and that's exactly what happened when his car was destroyed in the wake of the Paul Menard dirt storm. Grade: C 33. David Ragan , No. 23 Toyota, BK Racing . Ragan was collected in two wrecks, with the final melee delivering a knockout blow. Ragan's welfare is of great importance to drivers on the Chase bubble. If Chris Buescher , with one win, replaces Ragan in 30th in the standings, the winless driver 16th in the Chase standings will need a win to qualify for the postseason. Grade: C 34. Matt DiBenedetto , No. 83 Toyota, BK Racing . Sunday wasn't one of DiBenedetto's better days. He sustained a pit-road penalty, went for a spin on the Lap 81 restart and then absorbed his sixth DNF of the season because of a crash when he was caught up in the Lap 84 mess. On the other hand, he spent the fourth-most laps running in the top 15 of the drivers who finished 21st through 40th. Grade: D 35. Regan Smith , No. 7 Chevrolet, Tommy Baldwin Racing . Car woes limited Smith to 77 laps. Grade: D 36. Alex Kennedy , No. 55 Chevrolet, Premium Motorsports. Kennedy was caught up in the wreck that caused the fourth caution, and he brought out the sixth caution when his engine blew 20 laps later. Grade: F 37. Michael Annett , No. 46 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . Annett was running at the finish, but brake issues limited him to 77 laps. Grade: F 38. Ricky Stenhouse Jr ., No. 17 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Stenhouse was driving aggressively after the restart following the second caution and touched off the big crash on Lap 53 when he lost control of his car coming out of the carrousel heading into Turn 6. The No. 17 hit the inside wall straight on and then took another big hit when Jimmie Johnson T-boned the car when it ricocheted back onto the track. Grade: F 39. Greg Biffle , No. 16 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Biffle's day ended in the big crash on Lap 53. He said he thought he had cleared Ricky Stenhouse Jr .'s car but was hit from behind by Austin Dillon . Wrong place, wrong time. Grade: D 40. Jimmie Johnson , No. 48 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Johnson paid dearly for an early pit-road speeding penalty that put him in the back of the field when he was collected in the big wreck on Lap 53. It was Johnson's fourth DNF for a crash in the past nine races. Grade: F
Rundown: Analysis of all 43 cars at Dover
Below is a breakdown of how the full 43-car field fared at Dover International Speedway . 1. Kevin Harvick , No. 4 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Harvick scored his spot in the Round of 12 in dramatic fashion by leading a career-best 355 laps and notching the 750th victory for manufacturer Chevrolet. 2. Kyle Busch , No. 18 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Post-race, Busch said he was pleased with where his team finished, citing it had a second-place car, but also adding it had quite a bit of ground to make up to catch the "lightning-fast" No. 4 team. 3. Dale Earnhardt Jr ., No. 88 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . The final caution flag was a lucky break for Earnhardt, who took the opportunity to address a loose wheel. He then used a solid restart to slip past fellow Chase contender Jamie McMurray and punch his ticket to the next round. 4. Jamie McMurray , No. 1 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing . "Nice work guys. Nothing to be ashamed of," McMurray radioed his team after just missing the cut for Round 2. For more in-car audio, sign up for RaceView . 5. Aric Almirola , No. 43 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . Almirola was posting top-five lap times with 55 laps to go, but needed those remaining circuits to pick up seven spots and match his best Dover result. 6. Kasey Kahne , No. 5 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . The decision to stop twice during the fifth caution period to ensure the No. 5 was full of fuel didn't hurt Kahne, who earned his seventh Dover top 10. 7. Matt Kenseth , No. 20 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Kenseth, already a Round 2 contender thanks to his Loudon victory, spent the remaining 125 laps on Sunday looking for more corner speed. 8. Ricky Stenhouse Jr ., No. 17, Roush Fenway Racing . Stenhouse restarted 10th after the fifth caution flag, and he held on for his best Dover finish. 9 . Kyle Larson , No. 42 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing . Larson looked to play the spoiler when he moved into the top three in the final 100 laps, but a decision to stay out during the final caution flag hurt his chances. 10. Joey Logano , No. 22 Ford, Team Penske . Logano advances to the next round of the Chase with his ninth Dover top 10. 11. Martin Truex Jr ., No. 78 Chevrolet, Furniture Row Racing . Truex, a Round 2 contender, climbed through the field after starting from the rear when NASCAR had a post-inspection issue with the flare on his side skirt. 12. Jeff Gordon , No. 24 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . " Man, it's never easy," Gordon told his team after a rough final restart. "I know that wasn't easy," spotter Eddie D'Hondt said. "But we did what we needed to" (to advance). For more in-car audio, sign up for RaceView . 13. Greg Biffle , No. 16 Ford, Roush-Fenway Racing. Biffle got sideways with 11 laps to go, but saved his car while running 15th . 14. Clint Bowyer , No. 15, Michael Waltrip Racing . Bowyer recovered after dropping from eighth to 25th when he made an unscheduled stop on Lap 175 for a loose wheel. 15. Carl Edwards , No. 19 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Crew chief Darian Grubb didn't want to risk the No. 19's spot in the next round of the Chase so he called his driver back down pit road during the sixth caution flag for a right-front tire issue. 16. Brad Keselowski , No. 2 Ford, Team Penske . Around Lap 60, Keselowski was running 16th when he reported that his engine temperatures were dropping. He maintained and will compete in the second round of the Chase. 17. Kurt Busch , No. 41 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . An issue with the left-front jack bolt caused Busch to lose ride height late in the race. The team corrected the issue but still had to make additional repairs during the Lap 374 stop under caution. 18. Denny Hamlin , No. 11 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Hamlin won the race off pit road after a four-tire stop during the competition caution, but his forward momentum was stalled because he was tagged for speeding. A second penalty sealed the deal, but he still advanced because he won Chicagoland. 19. Ryan Newman , No. 31 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Newman earned the beneficiary pass after the third caution flag and managed to stay only one lap down as the race progressed. He advanced to the second round of the Chase. 20. Sam Hornish Jr ., No. 9 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . Hornish and his team chased the handling of his No. 9 Ford all day, even as the track took on rubber. 21. Danica Patrick , No. 10 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Patrick worked with her team to help her No. 10 Chevy take off better around Dover's 1-mile oval. 22. David Ragan , No. 55 Toyota, Michael Waltrip Racing . Ragan, who fell off the lead lap by Lap 105, had previously told his team he was "too free on exit and pretty snug in the center." 23. Austin Dillon , No. 3 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Dillon's team made several chassis adjustments during the second half of the race to help him get into the corner better. 24. Casey Mears , No. 13 Chevrolet, Germain Racing . Mears was running 25th during the first half of Sunday's race when he was hooked in the right rear and saved his car from spinning on-track. 25. Paul Menard , No. 27 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Menard rolled off the grid 14th and almost immediately went backward as he watched his first Chase run fade. 26. Tony Stewart , No. 14 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Stewart recently announced he'd retire from driving after 2016 to focus on ownership. But on Sunday, the driver of the No. 14 focused on pit strategy to improve his track position. 27. Justin Allgaier , No. 51 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . Allgaier received the beneficiary pass during the competition caution, but spent much of the race looking for mid-corner grip. 28. Cole Whitt , No. 35 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Like his teammate Brett Moffitt , Whitt discovered that his car improved around Dover as the 1-mile concrete oval took on rubber. 29. AJ Allmendinger , No. 47 Chevrolet, JTG-Daugherty Racing. Allmendinger was going too fast trying to get onto pit road when he spun up the track on Lap 311. 30. David Gilliland , No. 38 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Gilliland reported a tight-handling condition during the final 60 laps of Sunday's race, which his team worked to address. 31. Trevor Bayne , No. 6 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Halfway through a fuel run when the fifth caution flag was waved, Bayne elected to take the wave-around like most cars one or more laps down. 32. Alex Bowman , No. 7 Chevrolet, Tommy Baldwin Racing . Bowman and his team continually made adjustments on the No. 7 Chevy throughout Sunday's race trying to find balance. 33. Reed Sorenson , No. 98 Ford, Phil Parsons Racing. Already three laps down and in 36th, Sorenson told his team that he was "just racing the track right now" when they informed him leader Kevin Harvick was bearing down. 34. Matt DiBenedetto , No. 83 Toyota, BK Racing . "Holy crap," DiBenedetto said while running 37th on Lap 101 when he learned leader Kevin Harvick was on his bumper -- again. 35. J.J. Yeley, No. 26 Toyota, BK Racing . Long green-flag runs were a struggle Sunday for Yeley. 36. Josh Wise , No. 32 Ford, Go FAS Racing. Wise sustained minimal nose damage after making contact with Jeb Burton on Lap 3. 37. Michael Annett , No. 46 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . During the fifth caution flag, Annett reported that his entry was neutral and he couldn't pick up the gas when he wanted to. 38. Alex Kennedy , No. 33 Chevrolet, Circle Sport . Kennedy rolled off the grid 36th in his Dover debut. 39. Timmy Hill , No. 62 Chevrolet, Premium Motorsports . Starting 43rd at the fast 1-mile oval made forward progress an immediate issue for Hill in his fourth Dover appearance. 40. Landon Cassill , No. 40 Chevrolet, Hillman Smith Motorsports. Cassill's fear that his engine was "letting go" was realized on Lap 372 and prompted the eighth caution flag. 41. Jimmie Johnson , No. 48 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . A torn rear axle seal sidelined Johnson in his 500th Cup start and ended his quest for a seventh championship. 42. Brett Moffitt , No. 34 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Moffitt's lap times were improving as the track picked up rubber, but his car was "killed" when he blew a right-front and made hard contact with the wall to bring out the seventh caution flag. 43. Jeb Burton , No. 23 Toyota, BK Racing . Burton spun on Lap 3 and cut a tire on Lap 192 to bring out the caution flag twice on Sunday.
The Rundown: Charlotte
RELATED: Full race results " Series standings " Chase Grid Below is a breakdown of how the full 43-car field fared at Charlotte Motor Speedway in the rain-delayed Bank of America 500 : 1. Joey Logano , No. 22 Ford, Team Penske . Logano led a career-high 227 laps on Sunday en route to his first Charlotte victory. He advances to the next round of the Chase. " 1-on-1: Logano discusses victory, locking in Eliminator Round spot 2. Kevin Harvick , No. 4 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Harvick was quiet on the radio with 22 laps to go Sunday as he continually tried to chip away at Logano's lead. 3. Martin Truex Jr ., No. 78 Chevrolet, Furniture Row Racing . Truex held on to notch his best Charlotte result despite brushing the wall and developing a front-end handling issue with 52 laps to go. " RELATED: Truex discusses Charlotte run 4. Denny Hamlin , No. 11 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Hamlin flipped to his backup battery with about 100 laps left in Sunday's race and outran concern that even his backup battery was experiencing issues. 5. Kurt Busch , No. 41 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Kurt Busch spent most of Sunday quietly running inside the top 10 and keeping himself in contention for the next round of the Chase. 6. Carl Edwards , No. 19 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Edwards started eighth and was a steady presence in the top 10 en route to his 12th top-10 of the season. 7. Austin Dillon , No. 3 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Dillon won Friday's XFINITY race at Charlotte and then on Sunday posted his best Cup performance at the 1.5-mile track. 8. Jeff Gordon , No. 24 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Gordon held steady in his final race at Charlotte, site of his first career Cup victory in 1994. 9. Brad Keselowski , No. 2 Ford, Team Penske . Keselowski held ninth during the last 19 laps despite a loose wheel. 10. Aric Almirola , No. 43 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . Almirola used his best Charlotte finish to score his fifth top-10 of the year. 11. Clint Bowyer , No. 15 Toyota, Michael Waltrip Racing . Bowyer stayed out during green-flag stops to lead Lap 234 before settling back into the top 15. 12. Jamie McMurray , No. 1 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. Under caution on Lap 195, McMurray told his team that his car was pretty good until it got into oil and he lost position on a track where passing was difficult. 13. Ricky Stenhouse Jr ., No. 17 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Stenhouse earned the beneficiary pass during the final caution period and rolled on to match his second-best finish at Charlotte. 14. Ryan Blaney , No. 21 Ford. Wood Brothers Racing . A native of nearby High Point, North Carolina, Blaney scored his best Charlotte result and third top-15 of the year. 15. Ryan Newman , No. 31 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Just prior to the sixth caution flag, Newman sustained right-side damage after Matt Kenseth cut across his nose on his way into the wall. " RELATED: Is Newman in bubble trouble? 16. AJ Allmendinger , No. 47 Chevrolet, JTG Daugherty Racing . Allmendinger overcame early damage sustained when he made contact with another car on Lap 193 and knocked in his right-side fenders. 17. Sam Hornish Jr ., No. 9 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . Hornish stretched his pit window in the closing 100 laps when he stayed out during green-flag stops to lead twice for 22 laps around Charlotte. 18. Casey Mears , No. 13 Chevrolet, Germain Racing . Mears held on after a tight-handling condition developed late in Sunday’s race and sent him into the fence. 19. Danica Patrick , No. 10 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Patrick worked with her team on the handling of her car and benefited from long green-flag runs en route to her best Charlotte finish. 20. Kyle Busch , No. 18 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . "He was never going to make the commitment cone anyway," Busch said said after making contact with Kyle Larson near the entrance of pit road. Busch, then running in the top five, made a late decision to skip pit road, while Larson did just the opposite. " RELATED: Busch disappointed after rough day at Charlotte 21. Kyle Larson , No. 42 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. "Please apologize as much as you can," Larson radioed his crew after making a late decision to hit pit road during the eighth caution period and collecting Chase contender Kyle Busch in the process. " For more in-car audio, sign up for RaceView and/or Scanner today 22. Trevor Bayne , No. 6 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Bayne made an unscheduled pit stop on Lap 71 just prior to the fourth caution flag for a right-front wheel vibration. 23. Landon Cassill , No. 40 Chevrolet, Hillman Smith Motorsports. Cassill held out during green-flag stops and ran as high as third on Lap 131 before finally making his green-flag stop. 24. Greg Biffle , No. 16 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Biffle struggled to recover track position after making an unscheduled stop on Lap 90 for a loose wheel. 25. Michael Annett , No. 46 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . In his fourth Charlotte outing, Annett picked up his best finish at the 1.5-mile speedway. 26. Tony Stewart , No. 14 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Stewart grazed the wall on Lap 115 and had to pit 12 laps later with a flat tire. 27. David Gilliland , No. 38 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Carrying the #SCStrong on his decklid in support of the recent flooding in South Carolina, Gilliland did his best to avoid trouble on Sunday. 28. Dale Earnhardt Jr ., No. 88 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Earnhardt lost his right-front tire and faded through the field before hitting the wall to bring out the fourth caution period. " RELATED: Junior says 'it ain't over' for the 88 team 29. Matt DiBenedetto , No. 83 Toyota, BK Racing . It was a promising day for DiBenedetto who turned in his best Charlotte result. 30. Brett Moffitt , No. 34 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Moffitt recorded his best Charlotte finish after lining up 37th Sunday. 31. Michael McDowell , No. 95 Ford, Leavine Family Racing . McDowell bounced off the wall in the closing third of Sunday’s race, but survived without picking up a tire rub. 32. Alex Bowman , No. 7 Chevrolet, Tommy Baldwin Racing . A puncture in the left-rear tire prompted Bowman to make an unscheduled stop during the first 115 laps, but a subsequent tire rub put the No. 7 Chevy back on pit road for repairs. 33. J.J. Yeley, No. 26 Toyota, BK Racing . Yeley was black-flagged on Lap 35 after one of his crew members kneed-in his right-rear quarter panel. 34. Alex Kennedy , No. 33 Chevrolet, Circle Sport Racing. Kennedy survived a messy start to Sunday’s race, but very quickly found himself fighting for the beneficiary pass. 35. Reed Sorenson , No. 98 Ford, Premium Motorsports. Sorenson earned the beneficiary pass during the competition caution, but struggled to stay on the lead lap. 36. Paul Menard , No. 27 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Menard brushed the wall on Lap 133 but held on to keep the caution flag from coming out and made his scheduled stop three laps later. 37. David Ragan , No. 55 Toyota, Michael Waltrip Racing . On Lap 291, Ragan told his team the engine was out of water and he brought his car to pit road. 38. Cole Whitt , No. 35 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Stacked up on the first green flag, Whitt received contact from behind and had to spend an extended amount of time on pit road during the first caution flag to patch his bumper. 39. Jimmie Johnson , No. 48 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Johnson's strong day was stalled by an engine issue (oil pump) that sent him to the garage with 77 laps to go on Sunday. " RELATED: Silver lining to early exit 40. Justin Allgaier , No. 51 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . Allgaier radioed that he just "killed the radiator" after he made contact with Michael McDowell on the Lap 182 restart. " For more in-car audio, sign up for RaceView and/or Scanner today 41. Jeb Burton , No. 26 Toyota, BK Racing . As he took the green flag at the start, Burton ran into the back of slowing competitors, incurring significant left-front damage and bringing out the caution flag on Lap 1. 42. Matt Kenseth , No. 20 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Kenseth's day "snowballed" after a couple pit road mistakes combined with tire rub and then on-track contact with Ryan Newman . Kenseth ultimately broke something on the right-front of his car and retreated to the garage. " RELATED: Multiple incidents ruin Kenseth's day 43. Kasey Kahne , No. 5 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Kahne cut a tire twice inside the first 61 laps on Sunday; the second one sent him hard into the wall and brought out the third caution flag.
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