Auto Club Speedway by the numbers
BUY TICKETS: Celebrate Auto Club's 20th anniversary RELATED: Full weekend schedule Jimmie Johnson was driving a Superman car and wearing a cape the last time he saw Victory Lane at Auto Club Speedway in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series' stop there in 2016. It's appropriate since he almost owns the place. Johnson has six wins at Auto Club, spanning a decade and a half. He also has five runner-up finishes, an impressive average finishing place of 6.5 and has led 980 laps around the 2-mile circuit in Fontana, California. Roger Penske has a stake in the place as well, having been one of the architects, alongside Les "Coach" Richter. The track officially opened June 22, 1997, and it's celebrating its 20th anniversary as NASCAR returns to Fontana this weekend for Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and XFINITY Series racing. Penske got his first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series win at the track on April 29, 2001 with Rusty Wallace piloting the No. 2 Miller Lite Ford. Brad Keselowski put Team Penske back in Victory Lane at Auto Club Speedway in 2015. Penske's open wheel drivers also have had success at the track. Penske built a fast race track, leading to some stout stats in the speedway's lore: -- A 188.511 mph qualifying speed record set by Denny Hamlin in 2016 -- A 155.012 mph race speed record set by Jeff Gordon in 1997 Digging into the numbers a bit more: -- Hendrick Motorsports has 10 wins, the most of any team -- Ford has 11 wins at the track, and Chevrolet has 13. Kyle Busch has taken home two Auto Club 400 trophies for Toyota in back-to-back races in 2013-14. -- Farthest back in the field a winning driver started: 31st, Matt Kenseth, spring of 2006 -- Pole-sitting winners: Only one, Johnson in 2008 -- The closest margin of victory was 0.144 seconds, as Kevin Harvick edged Johnson in 2011
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From The Vault: Jeff Gordon wins first race at Fontana
Relive the first race at Auto Club Speedway that saw Jeff Gordon be the first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver to go to Victory Lane at the track in 1997.
Pete Hamilton wins the 1970 Daytona 500
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The 2016 NASCAR season by the numbers
.010: The margin of victory (in seconds) for Denny Hamlin over Martin Truex Jr . in the season-opening Daytona 500 , the closest finish in the 58-year history of the Great American Race. .010: The margin of victory (in seconds) for Kevin Harvick over Carl Edwards three weeks later at Phoenix International Raceway , the closest finish ever at the 1-mile track. We hear a lot about door-buster deals this time of year, but this finish was a door-banging deal instead. $20,000: The amount NASCAR officials fined Danica Patrick for walking toward the racing surface and gesturing at Kasey Kahne 's passing car during the Auto Club 400 in March at Auto Club Speedway . $10,000: The amount NASCAR officials fined Kyle Busch for failure to fulfill his post-race media obligations following the XFINITY Series race at Auto Club. Not sure what was going on under the California sun that weekend, but both drivers managed to avoid similar situations the rest of the season, which was good for everyone involved. .75 miles: That's how close Kyle Busch was to victory in April at Richmond before teammate Carl Edwards used his No. 19 Toyota to nudge Busch's No. 18 out of the way. It was Edwards' second win in a row for the season and it was the first last-lap win in the track's history. The silence on Busch's radio afterward was deafening. " Listen to in-car audio 18 (Part 1): The number of cars that wrecked during a restart pileup in May at Dover when Jimmie Johnson 's No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet had a mechanical failure. This opened the door for Matt Kenseth to hold off a hard-charging Kyle Larson for the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing team's first win of the season. 392: The number of laps Martin Truex Jr . led out of 400 laps in the Coca-Cola 600 in May at Charlotte Motor Speedway . He spent 588 of the 600 miles at the front, which set a record for a NASCAR race. Pity to the poor souls who removed him from their NASCAR Fantasy Live lineups right before the green flag. 23.0: The average age of the podium finishers in the June race at Michigan International Speedway , a record for the youngest first-, second- and third-place finishers in NASCAR history. Joey Logano (26) won the race and was followed by Chase Elliott (20) and Kyle Larson (23). 49: Tony Stewart 's win total in the NASCAR premier series after he bumped Denny Hamlin out of the way in the final corner in June at Sonoma for what turned out to be his last victory. The win ended an 84-race drought for Stewart and wrapped up with him in Victory Lane drinking wine from a crystal goblet. 18 (Part 2): The number of races Dale Earnhardt Jr . would eventually miss because of concussion-related symptoms believed to be brought on after a crash at the season's first race at Michigan. Alex Bowman drove the Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet starting with the July race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway , and Jeff Gordon also filled in for his former teammate starting at Indianapolis. 1: The number of road-course races Denny Hamlin has won in his career after he took the checkered flag in August at Watkins Glen International . Hamlin rebounded from his last-lap disappointment at Sonoma to hold off Martin Truex Jr ., whose No. 78 Furniture Row Racing Toyota wiped out on the last lap after contact with Brad Keselowski 's No. 2 Team Penske Ford. 99: It took Kyle Larson this many starts before reporters could finally stop writing stories about when the talented Chip Ganassi Racing driver would win a premier series race, because he did so in August at Michigan International Speedway . And with Brett Moffitt winning in the Camping World Truck Series at Michigan and Michael McDowell winning at Road America that weekend, it marked the first time in history that there were first-time winners in all three NASCAR national series in one weekend. 17: The number of spots Kevin Harvick lost on pit road throughout the Bojangles' Southern 500 -- giving new meaning to the term "throwback" at Darlington Raceway 's annual nod to racing's past. So despite leading a race-high 214 laps, Harvick was unable to win -- with that honor instead going to Martin Truex Jr ., whose pit crew was on point when it mattered most. .006: The margin (in seconds) that Denny Hamlin finished ahead of Kurt Busch for third place in October at Talladega Superspeedway , allowing Hamlin to tie Austin Dillon for the final Round of 8 transfer spot -- with the best finish tiebreaker propelling Hamlin into the next round. All three of Hamlin's Joe Gibbs Racing teammates also made the Round of 8. Those teammates rode in the back of the field for much of the race, employing a controversial strategy with the potential aim of avoiding the "Big One." 9: Jimmie Johnson won for the ninth time at Martinsville Speedway in the October Chase race that guaranteed him a berth in the Championship 4 at Homestead-Miami Speedway . The win also gave the green light for pundits to ponder, along with the driver, the possibility of a seventh championship. 7: Three weeks later at Homestead-Miami Speedway , Jimmie Johnson earned the new nickname "Seven-Time" with his dramatic come-from-behind win in the Ford EcoBoost 400 . Johnson's seventh championship tied him with Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt for the most all-time and came after a wreck by Carl Edwards , who was trying to block Joey Logano following a late restart. For Johnson, it was career win No. 80, and now, the key stat entering next year is eight, as in Johnson attempting to stand alone in greatness. &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
Chase by the Numbers : Charlotte
Take a look at the numbers from NASCAR’s only night race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup and which drivers have the numbers to back up their performances at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Preview Show: Fontana
Jonathan Merryman and Chris Rice preview this weekend's race at Auto Club Speedway and make their picks for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race.
By the Numbers : Petty vs. Earnhardt vs. Johnson
Jimmie Johnson tied Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt with his seventh premier series title this year. Below is a comparison of stats between the three drivers, with the obvious caveat that Johnson is still an active driver. Note : Graphic by Mike Sales
Chase By The Numbers : Talladega
As four more drivers face elimination in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, here are some statistics to keep in mind at the most unpredictable track in NASCAR.
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