Jimmie Johnson talks in the Media Center about his past struggles at Bristol Motor Speedway.
Jimmie Johnson holds off Kevin Harvick and Dale Earnhardt Jr. to win the Duck Commander 500 at Texas Motor Speedway.
NASCAR.com's Jon Housholder recaps the Duck Commander 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. From Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s early lug nut issues to Harvick's late charge to Jimmie Johnson's victory, get caught up on all the big storylines.
Jimmie Johnson celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the Duck Commander 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. Johnson led a race-high 128 laps on his way to the win.
Matt Strickert goes one-on-one with Jimmie Johnson as he reflects on his late-race surge to capture his fifth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victory at Texas Motor Speedway, and his first in the spring event.
Jimmie Johnson talks about the late-race restarts at Texas Motor Speedway and holding off Kevin Harvick for the victory.
Matthew Dillner and Chuck Bush take some advice from Jimmie Johnson and check out Los Panchos Taco Shop in El Cajon as NASCAR Goes West continues. Visit CampingWorld.com to find everything you need for your RV!
Multiple-time series champions battle flat tires, wrecked race cars Play: NASCAR Fantasy Live Related: Full Kobalt 400 results LAS VEGAS -- Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon must be thrilled to get out of Sin City. Armed with two of the fastest cars on the track throughout the weekend, both multiple-time premier series champions couldn't shake off a spate of unfortunate events that seemed to magnify as race day deepened. Johnson had to pit from second place with a vibration, then blew a tire just when he had climbed his way back through the field. Then he blew another one for good measure. Gordon's misfortune actually began late Saturday with less than a minute remaining in final practice, when he rammed the No. 10 Chevrolet following a spin from Danica Patrick , and it caused enough to damage to his No. 24 Chevrolet that it necessitated a backup car. So the Coors Light Pole Award winner started from the rear, sprinted his way into the top 10, and then mussed up his car's nose by running into Jeb Burton … the direct result of Burton trying to get away from Johnson's wrecking No. 48. "I guess Jimmie blew a right front tire," said Gordon, who patted Burton's head on pit road after the race as the two had a brief talk. "I was right behind Jeb (Burton) getting ready to make a move on him. I wasn't sure if I was going to go inside or outside, but all of a sudden he started checking up and I thought he was doing it to let me go by him and I didn't realize until right at that moment when my spotter said something to me that Jimmie was having a problem. And I ran into the back of him. It ruined our day and certainly ruined the front end." The 43-year-old wound up 18th, as he nursed his battered, tape-covered Chevrolet around the 1.5-mile Las Vegas Motor Speedway oval over the final 80 laps. Johnson's bad vibes didn't start Saturday as Gordon's did, but they came over a brutal hour-long stretch Sunday. The No. 48 Chevrolet was out front for 45 laps and seemed to have a car with the ability to challenge eventual race winner Kevin Harvick , who led 142 of 267 laps. In fact, "Six-Time" was leading on Lap 91 when he slowed considerably after feeling a vibration. He came down pit road for tires and was scored 35th (and one lap down) when he returned to the track. Johnson worked his way back to being one spot behind Clint Bowyer , and then Brad Keselowski , for the beneficiary position. A tire blew on Lap 173, though, which eliminated any hope of Johnson getting back on the lead lap. Twelve laps later, another tire went down -- and his No. 48 Chevrolet again caromed into the wall as a result. "The first one, they said the bead blew on it," Johnson said. " That's kind of a freak deal. The second one, it went soft. So there could have been some damage that caused it or some rub or something like that, and it went soft going into Turn 3 and I hit the wall, unfortunately. I'm disappointed. We certainly had an awesome race car." The poor result is less of a worry for Johnson than it is for Gordon. With one win in pocket already, the No. 48 team has virtually clinched a spot in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup . It might be a little more concerning for Gordon, who actually jumped six spots in the standings -- up to 30th -- following his 26-point day. "It was a great effort," Gordon said. "I just can't believe the way these days are going." MORE: READ: Latest NASCAR news PLAY: Sign up for Fantasy Live WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView today FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Hendrick driver leads field ahead of Sunday's Kobalt 400 (3:30 p.m. ET, FOX) Play: NASCAR Fantasy Live RELATED: Practice 3 results Jimmie Johnson swept both Sprint Cup Series practices Saturday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway , pacing the weekend's final practice with a best speed of 187.637 mph. The six-time series champion appears to have his No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet in prime condition for Sunday's Kobalt 400 (3:30 p.m. ET, FOX) as the only driver to hit 187-plus mph in the last session. Johnson was trailed by Daytona 500 winner Joey Logano (186.916 mph), Casey Mears (186.458 mph), Martin Truex Jr . (186.438 mph) and defending champion Kevin Harvick (186.342 mph). Defending race-winner Brad Keselowski was ninth on the charts at 185.605, while Coors Light Pole Award winner Jeff Gordon was 14th at 185.306 mph. However, Gordon sustained damage in practice and had to go to a backup car and to the back of Sunday's field. RELATED: Gordon goes to backup car Also going to a backup car is David Ragan , who is filling in for Kyle Busch in the No. 18 Toyota and rode the wall late in the session and took significant damage on his ride side. Practice 2 " Results Jimmie Johnson vaulted to the top of the speed charts in the first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice of the day Saturday morning at Las Vegas Motor Speedway . Johnson , driving the Hendrick Motorsports No. 48 Chevrolet, turned a fast lap of 191.891 mph on the 1.5-mile track in preparation for Sunday's Kobalt 400 (3:30 p.m. ET, FOX), the third event of the season and the first leg of the three-race West Coast Swing. The six-time series champion was two mph faster than any other driver, but below the track record of 194.679 mph set by Jeff Gordon in Coors Light Pole Qualifying on Friday. Last season's series runner-up Ryan Newman , driving the Richard Childress Racing No. 31 Chevrolet, was second-fastest at 189.773 mph in the 55-minute session. The veteran was trailed by reigning champion Kevin Harvick (189.667 mph), Daytona 500 winner Joey Logano (189.620 mph) and Dale Earnhardt Jr . (189.394 mph.) Defending race winner Brad Keselowski was 13th with a speed of 188.627 mph. Coors Light Pole Award winner Jeff Gordon , second in opening practice, was 14th at 188.324 mph. Aric Almirola spun off Turn 2 with just over nine minutes left in the practice session to bring out a caution. Several drivers filling in as substitutes had mixed fortunes: • David Ragan , making his second interim start in the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 Toyota, was 16th (187.806 mph) in place of the injured Kyle Busch , out indefinitely with multiple lower-leg injuries suffered in a Feb. 21 crash during a NASCAR XFINITY Series event at Daytona International Speedway . • Brett Moffitt , filling Ragan's regular ride in the Front Row Motorsports No. 34 Ford for the first time, was 35th (184.723 mph) fastest as he prepares for just his ninth Sprint Cup start. • Regan Smith , subbing for suspended Kurt Busch in the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 41 Chevrolet for the third consecutive week, was 22nd-fastest (186.981 mph). In a heartwarming return to the driver's seat after missing the first two races of the season, Brian Vickers was 29th-fastest in the Michael Waltrip Racing No. 55 Toyota. Vickers has spent the offseason recovering from heart surgery last December; team owner Michael Waltrip (Daytona) and Moffitt (Atlanta) drove the car in his place to start 2015. MORE: READ: Latest NASCAR news PLAY: Sign up for Fantasy Live WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView today FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Wins third straight November race at Texas as Chasers fight RELATED: Follow your picks in the Chase Battle Grid Presented by Toyota MORE: Full results from Texas FORT WORTH, Texas -- It happens every fall, at least in recent years. Jimmie Johnson won the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway for the third straight year, holding off runner-up Kevin Harvick and third-place Brad Keselowski after Sunday’s AAA Texas 500 went to two overtimes. The action in the second race of the Chase’s Eliminator Round was scintillating enough, but it couldn’t match the intensity of a post-race brawl on pit road that left Keselowski and Jeff Gordon bruised and bloodied. Johnson , who was eliminated from the Chase two weeks ago at Talladega, led the field to the green flag on Lap 340, the second attempt at a green-white-checkered-flag finish, with Keselowski to his outside. As both drivers rolled through the first two corners wide open, Johnson inched ahead, ultimately clearing Keselowski’s Ford and pulling away. Harvick passed Keselowski for second place but couldn’t catch Johnson ’s No. 48 Chevrolet, which crossed the finish line .513 seconds ahead of Harvick’s No. 4 car. But it was the first attempt at a green-white-checkered finish that caused all the controversy and helped to scramble the Chase standings with only next Sunday’s event at Phoenix International Raceway (3 p.m. ET on ESPN) left to determine which four drivers race for the series championship Nov. 16 at Homestead-Miami Speedway . Gordon was the race leader at the time and picked the outside lane for a restart on Lap 335 with Johnson to his inside. Keselowski restarted third and tried to split the two Hendrick Motorsports drivers—in what Harvick would later call “bulldoze mode”—and ran out of room. Contact from Keselowski’s car cut Gordon’s left rear tire, causing Gordon to spin on the backstretch, which in turn brought out the record 13th caution of the race. Gordon finished 29th and dropped from first to fourth in the Chase standings, just one point clear of 25th-place finisher and Coors Light Polesitter Matt Kenseth in fifth. “We drove down into Turn 1, and he just decided to body-slam us and cut our left-rear tire,” an irate Gordon said after wading through a mass of crewmen to get to Keselowski. “It ruined our night. It ruined our chances, ruined our night, might have even ruined our Chase hopes. “It’s just uncalled for. I had to show my displeasure. It got ugly down there, obviously, and you know that’s all right. A lot of things are going to happen in the next couple of weeks.” If Gordon had issues with the way Keselowski raced him, the driver of the No. 2 Team Penske Ford was unapologetic. “I'm not trying to dish out something that I couldn't take myself,” Keselowski said. “But these guys have their own code, and they race differently than that. That's their right. We'll go through these battles. I've gone through them before and come out stronger. I'll go through them again and come out stronger, a better race car driver. “But what I'm not going to do is back down. I'm not going to get in the spot where I was in 2013 where, you know, I tried to be exactly what they all wanted me to be, because what they want me to be is a loser, and I'm not here to lose. I'm here to win. That means I'm going to have to drive my car, harder, stronger, faster than everybody out there. That's what I feel like I did today.” In Victory Lane, savoring his fourth win of the season, his record fourth victory at Texas and the 70th of his career, Johnson could only shake his head at the unplanned fireworks after the race. “I saw a little bit on the big screen going down the back straightaway,” said Johnson . “I would definitely have to go to the tape and watch and see what happened there. I know that second-to-last restart, I got hit from behind and I know Brad got to my outside, and I guess in the process of running into me and getting to the outside lane he ruffled some feathers. “Just an exciting night for us. We had a very fast race car, led a lot of laps (191 of 341). Those cautions at the end, one restart would help me, the other would hurt me—and in the end we got it done.” The wild action at Texas, which saw 12 of the 13 cautions occur after the halfway point, left the Chase wide open, with all eight eligible drivers within an 18-point range. Joey Logano recovered from a spin to finish 12th and shares the Chase lead with Denny Hamlin , who ran 10th. Ryan Newman is third in points, two behind Logano and Hamlin, after a 15th-place finish that could have been better, but for a tire rub resulting from contact on a late restart. Gordon is fourth, 12 out of the lead and one point ahead of Kenseth and Carl Edwards , who rallied from two laps down, avoided the bumping and banging on the track and finished an unlikely ninth. Keselowski heads to Phoenix seventh in the standings, 17 points out of first place and one point ahead of Harvick in eighth. With at least three of the four championship-eligible positions in the final race to be determined on points, none of the eight drivers goes to Phoenix with any degree of security. Notes: Kyle Busch ’s bid for a Texas weekend sweep of NASCAR’s top three series fizzled early. The winner of Friday’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race and Saturday’s Nationwide Series event was lapped by Johnson on Lap 125, but he recovered to finish fourth. … Kenseth became the all-time lap leader at Texas Motor Speedway during the opening run, leading the first 53 laps and 59 all told to bring his career total at Texas to 834, surpassing Tony Stewart ’s 801. MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL CHASE COVERAGE • Chase hub page • Chase Grid games • #MyChaseNation