Kenseth : '(I want to) win every race I enter ... duh'
Joe Gibbs Racing driver steals victory after leaders run out of fuel RELATED: Full race results " Updated series standings " MORE: Shop Kenseth gear LONG POND, Pa. -- Matt Kenseth , the unexpected winner of Sunday's Windows 10 400 at Pocono Raceway, had to do a double take. So did second and third-place finishers Brad Keselowski and Jeff Gordon . Kenseth got a gift on the final lap of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race when Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch ran out of fuel halfway through the final circuit at the 2.5-mile triangular track. Seeking his fourth straight victory in the series, Busch didn't save quite enough fuel on the last green-flag run to complete the 160-lap event, but he still gained 10 points toward his goal of reaching the top 30 in the series standings. Busch, who finished 21st after getting a push toward the start/finish line from Reed Sorenson , is now 13 points behind 30th-place David Gilliland . Busch has five races to crack the top 30 to become eligible for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup . Because Busch was pushed by another car, he did not get credit for completing the final lap, but that did not affect his finishing position. Collectively, the top three finishers led seven laps. Joey Logano , who handed the lead to Busch when the No. 22 Team Penske Ford ran out of fuel with fewer than three laps left, led 97. But Kenseth wasn't about to look a gift horse in the mouth, especially after the driver of the No. 20 JGR Toyota did what others failed to do -- save enough gas to get to the finish. Kenseth's second victory of the season locked him into the Chase. "There's nothing like wins," said Kenseth , who collected his first victory at Pocono and the 33rd of his career. "We had a lot of wins in 2013 and were pretty spoiled and last year we had a big dry spell, and this year we were able to win Bristol. "We've been up front a lot, so just really, really thankful to be with these guys and to get the win. I never thought I'd ever win at Pocono, and I never ever thought I'd win a fuel mileage race, so we did both today." Despite coming tantalizingly close to a fourth straight win, Busch was philosophical about the near miss. "Man, that's a bummer," said Busch, who ran out of fuel on the Long Pond straightaway approaching the Tunnel Turn, less than a mile-and-a-half from the start/finish line. "I wish I would've saved a little more there that last run. "I wish I would've known that the 22 (Logano) was that far away from making it. He was way far away from making it. Man, that was just a shame that we weren't able to get it done there." Busch took a moment to reflect on what might have been. The empty fuel tank also cost him entry into the top 30. "We would be celebrating a win and a Chase berth," he said ruefully. "We got greedy. I don't know how greedy, but that's the position we're in. If it came down to other things that we haven't had the success that we've had here lately, we would've had to have pitted and just made the opportunity of it and made the best finish that we could. But, we went for broke today and come up a little bit short, so can't fault the team." Keselowski, who ran out of fuel as he approached the line, recovered from an early penalty for sliding through his pit, knocking his jack man off his feet and knocking a tire out of his front carrier’s hands. The No. 2 Ford lost a lap, regained it and came home second, 9.012 seconds behind Kenseth , as lack of fuel took its toll on the front-runners. The outcome left Keselowski with mixed feelings. "Unfortunately, just another race where I kind of feel like it didn't all come together for us, and this one certainly on my end with having problems on pit road and kind of sliding through the box," said the 2012 series champion. "That dug a hole, got us a lap down with the penalty and so forth. "I think the last restart with, had to be somewhere around 60 or 70 to go (actually 63), we restarted 12th and we were able to drive up to sixth and looked like we were going to be able to get to fifth, and then the fuel play came in there at the end. We were able to take care of it to bring home second, which is a very respectable day. Certainly probably not where we were going to finish without the fuel, but I guess that's sometimes how it works." Dale Earnhardt Jr . ran fourth and Greg Biffle fifth, as none of the top five finishers were threats to finish that high before the varying fuel strategies scrambled the final order. "There at the end we were one of the last ones to pit which allowed us to run hard all the way to the finish not having to conserve or save fuel," said Gordon, smiling at the stroke of good fortune. "I thought we were trying to get maybe 10th or 12th and all of a sudden they said you're third, and I think I was probably the most shocked person out there on the race track when I found that out. "I knew cars were peeling off, but I just didn't realize that many were either running out or coming to pit road." Note: Both Martin Truex Jr . and Logano, who along with Busch had the strongest cars all afternoon, were cited for speeding on pit road after running out of fuel and were dropped to 19th and 20th, respectively, in the finishing order, the last two cars on the lead lap. FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
@nascarcasm dreams up Kenseth's Facebook page after his Pocono victory RELATED: All content from @nascarcasm " Follow @nascarcasm
Matt Kenseth never thought he would win a Pocono Raceway or a fuel-mileage race, but he did both in the Windows 10 400.
Kyle Busch runs out of fuel on the last lap, leaving Matt Kenseth open to take the victory at Pocono Raceway.
Costner Merrifield talks with Matt Kenseth after winning his second race of the 2015 season and his first at Pocono Raceway.
Complete news and notes on all 43 cars in the Windows 10 400 RELATED: Full race results " Series standings " Chase Grid Breaking down how the full 43-car field fared at Pocono Raceway. 1. Matt Kenseth , No. 20 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Kenseth was 16 seconds behind leader Kyle Busch in the closing laps, but the driver of the No. 20 saved enough fuel to pass his teammate and coast to his first Pocono win. 2. Brad Keselowski , No. 2 Ford, Team Penske . "Sorry about that, guys. Everybody OK?" Keselowski asked his team after he locked up his brakes, slid through his pit box and hit two crew members during his Lap 58 green-flag stop. He rallied to score his fifth top five of the year. 3. Jeff Gordon , No. 24 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Gordon matched his best 2015 finish when his Pocono finale became a fuel-mileage race and he climbed from 16th. 4. Dale Earnhardt Jr ., No. 88 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Earnhardt and his team battled through a variety of issues -- a pit road penalty and mid-race spin among them -- to be in the right place and climb from 17th to fourth in the final 10 laps as the leaders ran out of fuel. 5. Greg Biffle , No. 16 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Biffle recorded his second top-five of the year thanks to -- you guessed it -- fuel mileage. He also led Laps 125-126 during green-flag stops and kept working with his team to find grip. 6. Jimmie Johnson , No. 48 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Johnson was forced to pit for fuel with three laps to go and climbed through the field to earn his 14th top-10 as competitors faded. 7. AJ Allmendinger , No. 47 Chevrolet, JTG Daugherty Racing . A missed shift triggered a vibration for Allmendinger, who worked through the issue to score his third top-10 of the year. 8. Clint Bowyer , No. 15, Toyota, Michael Waltrip Racing . Bowyer started saving fuel while running 11th with 18 laps to go. 9. Tony Stewart , No. 14 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . It was a solid day for Stewart, who started fifth before recording just his second top-10 this season. 10. Carl Edwards , No. 19 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Edwards was running ninth in the closing laps when he hit pit road for a quick splash of fuel. 11. Paul Menard , No. 27 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Menard spent the majority of Sunday’s race running inside the top 15 and saved one lap of fuel to make it to the end. 12. Kyle Larson , No. 42 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing . Fuel mileage wasn’t on Larson’s side, but he was still pleased with the effort and later tweeted, "Best car we’ve had all year though and pit crew did an awesome job all day." 13. Austin Dillon , No. 3 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . With crew chief Slugger Labbe at the helm, Dillon posted his best Pocono result. 14. Landon Cassill , No. 40 Chevrolet, Hillman Smith Motorsports. Cassill ran as high as second en route to his best career Pocono showing. 15. Jamie McMurray , No. 1 Chevrolet. Chip Ganassi Racing . McMurray said Pocono was slicker this weekend than it was in June and he spent the race chasing the handling of his car. 16. Danica Patrick , No. 10 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Patrick had a mid-race scare when a piece of trash adhered itself to her car’s grille and caused her temperatures to spike. 17. David Ragan , No. 55 Toyota, Michael Waltrip Racing . Ragan improved to run 10th, but ran out of fuel in the final laps and coasted across the finish line. 18. Aric Almirola , No. 43 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . Almirola reported a throttle issue during the first half of Sunday’s race, but appeared to have the right amount of fuel to make it to the end. 19. Martin Truex Jr ., No. 78 Chevrolet, Furniture Row Racing . Truex was running second in the final laps and had to hit pit road for a quick splash to finish the race. A pit road speeding penalty incurred during the stop damaged his forward progress. 20. Joey Logano , No. 22 Ford, Team Penske . Logano led a race-high 97 laps and was cruising toward his second win of the year when his car ran out of fuel with three laps to go. He then picked up a speeding penalty while refueling. 21. Kyle Busch , No. 18 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . The pole sitter focused on fuel conservation and took over the race lead briefly before sputtering out himself with two laps to go. 22. Denny Hamlin , No. 11 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Hamlin focused on crisp shifts as he nursed a gearbox issue and maintained his position inside the top 10 until he also ran out of fuel. 23. Ryan Newman , No. 31 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Newman was running 16th when he ran out of fuel in the closing laps. 24. Justin Allgaier , No. 51 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . Allgaier was having a solid day, running inside the top 15, when he pitted just prior to the Lap 92 caution flag and lost track position. 25. Alex Bowman , No. 7 Chevrolet, Tommy Baldwin Racing . Bowman improved upon his best Pocono outing after a solid effort on Sunday. 26. Michael Annett , No. 46 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . Annett’s car started tight and then snapped to loose as Sunday’s race unfolded. 27. Cole Whitt , No. 35 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Whitt struggled to find consistency in his car and sustained damage while running in the pack. 28. Casey Mears , No. 13 Chevrolet, Germain Racing . Mears restarted 13th after picking up eight spots on pit road during the final caution. Subsequently, he reported that his car was plowing through the corners. 29. Matt DiBenedetto , No. 83 Toyota, BK Racing . DiBenedetto stayed out of trouble to post his best Pocono finish. 30. J.J. Yeley, No. 23 Toyota, BK Racing . Yeley was awarded the Lucky Dog pass on the seventh caution period, but struggled to capture any momentum. 31. Brett Moffitt , No. 34 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . On Lap 27, Moffitt made contact with teammate David Gilliland and sustained a significant tire rub. 32. Travis Kvapil , No. 32 Ford, Go Fas Racing. Kvapil held steady to improve upon his most recent Pocono performance. 33. David Gilliland , No. 38 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . During late-race green-flag stops, Gilliland’s team tried to get the front end of the car down after earlier contact elevated his splitter. 34. Reed Sorenson , No. 98 Ford, Phil Parsons Racing. Sorenson was the Lucky Dog three times in a row, but struggled to find a rhythm and stay on the lead lap. 35. Jeb Burton , No. 26 Toyota, BK Racing . "They’re lucky no one was pitting that time," Burton radioed his team after Kahne’s early-race crash on pit road brought out the red flag. "They’ve gotten lucky twice. Something needs to change." Burton was in a similar incident during Saturday’s final practice session. 36. Timmy Hill , No. 62 Chevrolet, Premium Motorsports. Hill recorded his best 2015 result in his third Cup event. 37. Kurt Busch , No. 41 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Busch was inadvertently turned by Paul Menard in Turn 1 and then nailed by Sam Hornish Jr . 38. Alex Kennedy , No. 33 Chevrolet, Circle Sport . Kennedy spun on Lap 92 to bring out the eighth caution flag. 39. Sam Hornish Jr ., No. 9 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . Hornish missed a shift early in the race, which caused a world of hurt for him and others navigating the Tricky Triangle. 40. Trevor Bayne , No. 6 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Bayne’s best Pocono start was stalled just past the midway point when a wayward tail pipe went through the radiator of his car. 41. Ricky Stenhouse Jr ., No. 17, Roush Fenway Racing . Stenouse braked hard but couldn’t avoid crashing into the back of a slowing Sam Hornish Jr . in Turn 1 on Lap 28. 42. Kevin Harvick , No. 4 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . The outside pole sitter opted to stay on track during the competition caution and blew up after leading the field to green on Lap 17. 43. Kasey Kahne , No. 5 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Kahne got loose on Lap 5 coming off Turn 3 and slammed into the pit road wall, sending helmets flying and pit crew personnel scurrying. FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
See what's coming this week to NASCAR.com Here's what you'll see on NASCAR.com this week: MONDAY: Brad Keselowski inadvertently hit his crewmen on pit road and found himself 37th. So how did he rally to finish second? RJ Kraft explains ... Stu Hothem catches up with Jeff Gordon , who tied his best finish of the year on Sunday at Pocono by finishing third ... The Rundown takes a look at how every driver in the field performed. TUESDAY: This week's Power Rankings presented by Outback is sure to get a shakeup now that Matt Kenseth has two wins on the season ... It's Jeff Gordon 's birthday, and we're looking back at his career through photos ... Kathy Sheldon identifies Sprint Cup drivers at age 40 (or older), and what their careers look like. WEDNESDAY: New paint schemes will be on display at Watkins Glen, and we'll have them all in Paint Scheme Preview ... The Glen provides the opportunity for an unknown to sneak out a win, and you can vote on who that might be in our winners poll ... High 5 presents the best NASCAR content from around the web. THURSDAY: Driver Reports highlights the 16 drivers currently on the Chase Grid, and how they fare at Watkins Glen ... We'll catch you back up on the nuances of road course qualifying ... This week's #TBT involves a man named Dale Earnhardt and a broken sternum. FRIDAY: The Sprint Cup Series gets on track at 9 a.m. ET, and we'll have full coverage from a busy day at the track ... 8 Tweets You Might Have Missed highlights the best from social media over the past week. Also coming this week: @nascarcasm has a busy week, including Matt Kenseth 's post-race Facebook page, and texts Jack Roush might have received after Darrell Wallace Jr . and Chris Buescher had another incident ... We'll give you the highlights of the weekend in GIF form ... Senior Writer Kenny Bruce heads to North Wilkesboro. Find out why.
Logano, Kyle Busch and Truex Jr. fall victim to dry fuel cells RELATED: Full race results " Updated series standings LONG POND, Pa. -- It was a tale of two races in Sunday's Windows 10 400 at Pocono Raceway, and the only thing that could slow Kyle Busch down was an empty fuel tank. Eight cautions in the first 97 laps didn't allow drivers to get into much of a rhythm, but a 63-lap green-flag run to the finish set up a chaotic ending. The top drivers of the afternoon -- Joey Logano , Busch and Martin Truex Jr. -- all ran out of fuel late while running in the top three and plenty of others were close too. That misfortune allowed Matt Kenseth to lead the final lap and steal the victory. Logano ran dry on Lap 158 with three laps to go, giving way to Busch for the lead. Except on the final lap, Busch ran out of gas. In between that, Truex Jr.’s fuel tank ran dry on Lap 159. All three stopped for service around Lap 124 during the lengthy green-flag run. Pit road speeding penalties cost Logano and Truex better finishes than what the final results show. Those penalties were assessed after the finish, making them both the last cars on the lead lap. "I don't know where we were on our strategy and all that stuff," Busch said on pit road after his 21st-place finish. "I got to debrief with Adam (Stevens, Busch's crew chief) first. I don't how close we were, if we were one lap short of making it, then I probably needed to save or do a better job of running those last 30 laps or so. He kept telling me to save my stuff, save my stuff. Just in case we had a yellow there and had to race. "I didn't know we were going to be short on fuel but once the 22 (Logano) ran out, to try and save fuel in those three laps just wasn't going to happen. We were short. We ran out but we went down swinging and I can't fault my guys for that. An awesome call. They called the race right and another ... can of gas and we'd be winning another one." Busch came into Pocono riding three straight victories and looking to be closing in a spot in the top 30 in the point standings. He will head to Watkins Glen 32nd in the standings, just 13 points out from getting into the top 30. "We got greedy. I don't know how greedy, but that's the position we're in," Busch said. For Logano, the result was another close-but-no-cigar type finish for the No. 22 Team Penske Ford. The 2015 Daytona 500 winner had a strong car all day, leading a race-high 97 laps but had to settle for 20th-place. This comes on the heels of two runner-up finishes to Busch in the previous three races. "I guess our numbers, from what Todd (Gordon, crew chief) said, was good enough to make it by a half a lap," Logano said. "I was saving fuel just to cushion it. I thought I was going to be good and then I started running out and knew we weren't going to make it. "We keep getting so close to these wins and they don't happen and it is so frustrating. The truth is that is if we keep racing hard and racing to the front we will win races. We were so close. You are counting down the laps in your head thinking you are going to make it but just didn't do it." The pressure Busch was putting on Logano from second place didn't allow the 25-year-old to save as much and ultimately both were on the wrong side of the fuel game. "You can only save so much and the 18 (Busch) was doing the same thing. He had to push me and I had to start saving a certain amount. He would catch me and then I would pull away a little bit. We were playing cat and mouse out there. It is not the way you want to race. You want to go to the gas and race hard. These fuel mileage races are always exciting, usually more so when you are on the winning end, not the losing end." Truex, who won at Pocono in June, saw a silver lining when he led his first laps since that win. However, he came out 19th, marking his fifth finish outside the top 10 in the past six races. It's a disappointing statistic when compared to the No. 78 team's 14 top 10s in the first 15 races of the season. "Once again on the wrong end of a fuel mileage race," Truex said, who finished fifth at Charlotte, when Carl Edwards rode to victory on a fuel mileage play. "We thought we were in good shape there. I saved the whole last run. The last 15, 20 laps I saved a lot. So not sure where we missed that." But for Truex, who is currently sixth in the provisional Chase Grid, he was focused on the bigger picture from the weekend's work. "Yeah, it's disappointing but what I am going to take away from this race is how our Furniture Row guys kept on making our Chevrolet better and better during the weekend," Truex said. "We were a contender today and in the big picture that's the most important point for our team as we head into the Chase. We were rolling; we just needed a little more fuel to make it an even better weekend." FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Team Penske driver manages runner-up finish RELATED: See frame-by-frame images of crew member incident LONG POND, Pa. -- In a race that had a little bit everything, perhaps no one illustrated the up-and-down nature of the Windows 10 400 at Pocono Raceway better than Brad Keselowski . The driver of the No. 2 Team Penske Ford finished second to Matt Kenseth , but not without overcoming an obstacle or two of his own, including a scary incident in which his car hit two of his crewmen on pit road. Pitting on Lap 57, Keselowski slid into his pit box, knocking jackman Braxton Brannon and front tire carrier Jeremy Ogles to the ground. Brannon went airborne and appeared to hit the ground hard, while Ogles hit and slid across the front of the car. Both crew members were OK after the incident, according to Team Penske and much to the relief of Keselowski. "Yeah, it's an 'Oh (expletive) moment,' but I'm glad from what I can tell, the guys are doing OK," Keselowski told NASCAR.com of the incident. Crazy day @poconoraceway Glad to get a second place finish out of a big mistake on my part and even happier everyone on the #2crew was — Brad Keselowski (@keselowski) August 3, 2015 However, because of the contact with the tire carrier, the tire that Ogles was carrying left the pit box and Keselowski had to serve a pass-through penalty for a pit box tire violation, which put Keselowski in 37th place. "It is another race where I kind of feel like it didn't all come together for us and we had the problems on pit road and sliding through the box and that dug a hole, and we got a lap down with the penalty," Keselowski said. However, the 2012 Sprint Cup Series champion's luck changed quickly as he was the beneficiary of the free pass for the race's sixth caution, putting him back on the lead lap. From there, Keselowski methodically worked his way up into the top 10 by Lap 110 and continued to pick up spots during the lengthy 63-lap green-flag run to end the race. His 44 quality passes (the number of times passing a car running in the top 15 during a green flag period) were the second-most on the day. In a finish that played out as survival of the ones with fuel, Keselowski had just enough gas to get across the start/finish line with a runner-up result. Yet, he felt for his teammate, Joey Logano , who led a race-high 97 laps but ran out of fuel with three laps to go on Lap 158. "The fuel came into play at the end and we were able to take care of it to bring home second, which is a very respectable day," Keselowski said. "Certainly not where we were going to finish without the fuel, but that is sometimes how it works. I think my teammate and his team did a phenomenal job. I am heartbroken for them to not win the race." Despite scoring his fifth top five of the season and second runner-up finish in three races (he finished second to another Joe Gibbs Racing driver, Kyle Busch , at Loudon), Keselowski was left to wonder what if that early pit road miscue hadn't happened. "There is always going to be adversity and that is part of what makes success worthwhile," he said. "It is overcoming that adversity. If we could have, quite honestly, not had that issue earlier in the race, I feel like we probably would have won today. That one is on me. I feel guilty for my team on that. I am glad we were able to rally to second." FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule