Sunday, Sept. 23
Dover Int'l Speedway
Carl Edwards does his trademark backflip after winning the Dodge Deealers 400 at Dover.
Edwards Wins At Dover; 10 Points Separate Top Four Drivers
POST RACE NOTE: Carl Edward's No. 99 racecar was found too low in post-race inspection. A NASCAR spokesman confirmed the finding in televised reports
Sunday evening, adding the infraction did not appear intentional. Penalties, if any, are normally announced Tuesday's...
DOVER, DE (September 23, 2007) - Carl Edwards won the Dodge Dealers 400 at Dover International Speedway and moved up to third in the standings, three points out of first
Carl Edwards survived a good-old-fashioned slugfest at Dover International Speedway Sunday to win the Dodge Dealers 400 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race.
Edwards managed to escape a wreck-filled race that knocked many of the championship contenders out of the second event in the 10-race Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup, the most sought title in American motorsports today.
A record 13 caution flags kept the field slowed on a sunny day before a huge crowd that saw former NASCAR champion Matt Kenseth lead 191 laps before the engine in his Ford went up in smoke near the end.
Edwards, one of the Chase contenders, drove away from runnerup Greg Biffle in a five-lap sprint following the day's final caution period to take the checkered flag.
Dale Earnhardt, Jr., battled back from being a lap down to finish third. Veteran Mark Martin was fourth and Kyle Busch was fifth.
Rounding out the top 10 were Casey Mears, Chase contender Jeff Burton, Jamie McMurray, Chase contender and former champion Tony Stewart, and former Formula One Champion Juan Pablo Montoya.
A 12-car pileup on the main straightway sidelined a host of cars, including Chase contender Kurt Busch, who triggered the accident when something on his car broke. Busch's car veered into the outside wall and careened back across the track in front of most of the field.
Cars involved in the accident included defending champion Jimmie Johnson, Chase contender Martin Truex, Jr., Ryan Newman, Jeff Green, Kasey Kahne, Bobby Labonte, J.J. Yeley, Kyle Busch, Scott Riggs, Elliott Sadler and Reed Sorensen.
Other Chase contenders had problems, including Denny Hamlin, involved in a wreck with Kyle Petty that relegated Hamlin to a 38th place finish. Kenseth wound up 35th. Kurt Busch was 29th, Kevin Harvick, 20th, Johnson, 14th, Jeff Gordon, 11th and Clint Bowyer, 12th.
Sunday's action tightened the point battle with just four points separating the top four drivers, Gordon, Stewart, Edwards and Kyle Busch.
Hamlin took up where he left off Saturday by taking the lead at the start of the race. Hamlin dominated things in winning the Busch Series event.
Johnson was right behind him. Kenseth showed early signs of being competitive, as did Kurt Busch, who said Saturday night he thought his Dodge would be good in the race.
Cautions littered the first half of the race and pit road had to be closed to attend to an injured Michael Waltrip crew member during one of the caution periods. Mark Harris, the gas man for Waltrip, was transported to a local hospital for further observation after being knocked down during a pit stop.
When green flag racing continued, Kurt Busch took the lead with Biffle in tow. Mears was third, followed by Edwards, Kenseth and Hamlin.
Kenseth had moved ahead again by lap 112 with Busch second and Edwards third. Earnhardt served notice he planned to contend for the win when he moved into the top five before the halfway point.
Last week's winner Clint Bowyer had also moved into the top 10, after starting from the back of the pack.
Kevin Harvick lost two laps changing a flat tire at Lap 170. Harvick had been running with the leaders in the top 10 at the time. Defending champion Johnson suffered the same fate several laps later, losing two laps while his crew changed a flat right rear.
Just past the halfway point, Hamlin got into the rear of Kyle Petty coming off turn four. Petty spun, bringing out the sixth caution of the afternoon. Bowyer's car also suffered some minor front end damage. Hamlin's car was seriously damaged, sending him to the garage.
On the restart at Lap 208, Kenseth was in control with Kurt Busch, Greg Biffle, Kyle Busch and Ryan Newman in the top five. Rounding out the top 10 at the time were Casey Mears, Truex, Jr., Mark Martin, Edwards and Earnhardt.
Jeff Gordon assumed the lead in the points battle followed by Tony Stewart (two points back), Carl Edwards (three points back), Jimmie Johnson (four points back) and Kyle Busch (10 points out of first).
Complete unofficial race results and point standings in the Event Stats section following...
Checkered Flag Fast Facts
Qualifying: Friday, September 21 (ESPN2 & TSN-HD at 4 p.m./AT, 5 p.m./ET)
Practice: Saturday, September 22 (ESPN2 at 12 p.m./AT, 11 a.m./ET)
RaceDay: Sunday, September 23 (SPEED at 12:30 p.m./AT, 11:30 a.m./ET)
Countdown to Green: Sunday, September 23 (ABC & TSN-HD at 2 p.m./AT, 1 p.m./ET)
Race: Sunday, September 23 (ABC & TSN-alt at 2:30 p.m./AT, 1:30 p.m./ET)
- Edwards won the Dodge Dealers 400, his seventh victory in 113 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series races.
- This is his third victory and 12th top-10 finish in 2007.
- This is his first victory and fourth top-10 finish in seven races at Dover International Speedway.
- Greg Biffle (second) posted his sixth top-10 finish in 11 races at Dover.
- Dale Earnhardt Jr. (third) posted his seventh top-10 finish in 16 races at Dover. It is his 11th top-10 this
- Juan Pablo Montoya (10th) was the highest finishing rookie.
- Jeff Gordon leads the Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup by two points over Tony Stewart. Just 10
points separate the top-five.
Event Stats PDF files unless otherwise noted
Green Flag Fast Facts
- Jimmie Johnson won the Bud Pole for the Dodge Dealers 400 with a lap of 23.261 seconds, 154.765
- This is his 11th Bud Pole in 211 career NASCAR NEXTEL Cup races.
- This is his second Bud Pole and 19th top-10 start in 2007, including each of the past eight races.
- This is Johnson’s first Bud Pole and seventh top-10 starts in 12 races at Dover International Speedway.
He started first here in June 2005 when qualifying was canceled.
- Juan Pablo Montoya posted the second-fastest qualifying time with a lap of 23.402 seconds, 153.833
mph. This is his seventh top-10 start in 2007 and his third time to start second. He started 16th in his first
race at Dover this past June.
- Denny Hamlin (third) posted his second top-10 start in four Dover races and his xx this season.
- Six of the 12 Chase drivers qualified in the top 10: Johnson, Hamlin, Kurt Busch (fourth), Martin Truex Jr.
(fifth), Kevin Harvick (seventh) and Matt Kenseth (10th).
- Scott Riggs (sixth) was the fastest of the drivers required to make the field on time.
- Drivers that did not qualify include Ward Burton, Scott Wimmer, Sam Hornish Jr., Kevin Lepage, Dave Blaney and Jeremy
The Race: Dodge Dealers 400
The Place: Dover International Speedway
The Date: Sunday, Sept. 23
The Track: 1-mile concrete oval
The Distance: 400 miles, 400 laps
The Purse: $5,132,767
2006 Winner: Jeff Burton
2006 Pole: Jeff Gordon
Pre-Race Schedule (local/ET time): Friday—Practice, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Qualifying, 3:15 p.m. Saturday—Practice, 11-11:50 a.m. and 1:50-2:50 p.m.
Season To-Date Results & Point Standings: click here
Keys to Winning...
Although Dover is very similar in length to New Hampshire, the two tracks are quite different. While New Hampshire is a flat track (12 degree banking in the turns), Dover is high-banked (24 degrees) and runs like a superspeedway.
Green Flag Notes...
For the first time since 2002, four drivers have earned their first NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series victory in the same season. Two of the four – Martin Truex Jr. and Clint Bowyer – are also competing in their first Chase.
"Having four first-time winners in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series so far this season is a good indication of just how balanced and talented the group of drivers in this series is,” said NASCAR Vice President of Competition Robin Pemberton. “It also shows that the level of competition is as good as it's ever been and it is only going to continue to get better."
Truex and Bowyer were both part of the 2006 Raybestos Rookie of the Year class, considered by some to be the best rookie class the series has seen, while Juan Pablo Montoya (No. 42 Texaco/Havoline Dodge) leads the 2007 Raybestos Rookie of the Year standings.
“I’m just lucky to be part of such a strong rookie class,” Bowyer said. “I think when you look back on this group of guys 20 years from now, people will be able to say that was a pretty stout group of guys and hopefully, we’ll all be here for a long time to come. I think it’s pretty apparent how good that group of guys is when you look at who is in the Chase this year.”
Five drivers picked up their first career victory in 2002, including Jimmie Johnson, Kurt Busch (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge), Ryan Newman, Jamie McMurray (No. 26 IRWIN Ford) and Johnny Benson.
David Ragan (No. 6 AAA Ford) has slowly crept back into contention for Raybestos Rookie of the Year after spotting Juan Pablo Montoya an early lead following Montoya’s win at Infineon Raceway and runner-up finish at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Montoya leads Ragan by 13 points, but had led by as many as 26 points after the August Pocono race.
Rookie points are calculated based on a rookie driver’s finish compared to other rookies. The highest finishing rookie gets 10 points, second finishing rookie gets nine points, etc.
Each driver’s top 17 races count towards the Rookie of the Year standings.
- Aerodynamics will play a role; The high banking differentiates Dover from other mile tracks.
- Tire management is important; Drivers cannot afford to wear down their tires.
- Prepare for green flag stops; Crew chiefs need to make the right call when to come into the pits. A wrong decision could cost a driver up to two laps under green.
Jimmie Johnson grabbed the Bud Pole Friday at Dover and will start first in Sunday's Dodge Dealer's 400. See the complete
starting lineup by clicking here (PDF).
IMPORTANT: All information, schedules and/or scheduled events is/are subject to change without notice. Please
check with the source to confirm.
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