Kyle Busch, who had led the most laps at the southern Californian track, had to settle for second. The Joe Gibbs Racing driver would have loved to brought home a win for his #18 team and be the first JGR driver to win at the Auto Club Speedway. But, that was not to be.
Most popular driver and fan favorite Dale Earnhardt Jr. brought home third. He seems to be closing in on a win, hoping to stop the counter on the 134 races since he’s won, and capitalizing week in and out on the good chemistry between him and crew chief Steve Letarte.
Last year’s race winner Kevin Harvick earned fourth place. Carl Edwards was fifth while his teammate Greg Biffle sewed up sixth. Stewart’s teammate Ryan Newman was seventh, Martin Truex Jr. held on to eighth, and Kurt Busch finished a solid ninth. Jimmie Johnson, capping a lucky week with a reduction in sentence from team owner Rick Hendrick’s appeal of a ruling that stemmed from actions during the Daytona 500, brought up tenth place. The appeal led to lifted suspensions for Team #48 crew chief Chad Knaus and car chief Ron Malec as well as reinstatement of the 25 driver points that had been deducted earlier in the season. Only the $100,000 fine was held.
Leading the NASCAR Sprint Cup points for the third week in a row is Greg Biffle whose sixth in the race on Sunday was enough to keep him on top of the leaderboard. Kevin Harvick held on to second but is only seven points behind Biffle. Dale Earnhardt Jr. soared three spots to take the third position. Tony Stewart also moved up three positions to sit in fourth. Matt Kenseth finished 13th in Sunday’s race lost two spots to land in fifth.
Despite his Top-10 appearance, Martin Truex Jr. dropped two positions to sixth. Pole sitter for Sunday’s Auto Club 400 Denny Hamlin brought home an 11th place finish which felled him two spots to seventh. Jimmie Johnson gained an impressive three positions in addition to the eleventh spot the team found themselves in after the rulings earlier in the week; he now occupies eighth. Clint Bowyer finished 14th in the race and dropped one spot to ninth. Ryan Newman flew up three spots to close out the Top-10.
Next week NASCAR Sprint Cup racing returns to its southern roots and short track racing when the Goody’s Fast Relief 500 is run at the historic Martinsville Speedway. The broadcast begins on Sunday, April 1st at 12:30pm EST on Fox. Please stay return to this site for my Goody’s Fast Relief 500 Race Recap upon the completion of the race.
Chief 187™ is a writer, columnist, blogger, and creator of the widely successful Chief 187™ Chatter. Her work has been featured on the Indie Republic Network. In addition to NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Recaps and Friday Music Blogs, Chief 187™ has posted many articles based on interviews with musicians and MMA fighters. To follow Chief 187™ on Twitter follow @Chief187s. To purchase Chief 187™ gear visit http://cafepress.com/Chief187. To find all of the places Chief 187™’s works are featured visit http://Chief187.com.
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