CALIFORNIACONNECTION: How our Cali NASCAR Drivers fared at Daytona

Several NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers have California connections, including 4-time consecutive Champion Jimmie Johnson who hails from El Cajon. Below is a roundup of how each Californian fared in the COKE ZERO 400 Powered by Coca Cola at Daytona International Speedway, Saturday July 3.


San Bernardino County, Calif. (July 5, 2010) - California driver, Kevin Harvick captured his second win in 2010. Jeff Gordon finished in the top-10 as several California drivers made their mark in the COKE ZERO 400 Powered by Coca Cola at Daytona International Speedway. 

Below are how the Golden State drivers competed in this past weekend's Sprint Cup event:
Kevin Harvick  
No. 29 Shell/Pennzoil Chevrolet 
Hometown: Bakersfield

1st in points

1st PLACE FINISH:  Harvick, who started from the front, won his second race of 2010 and just his second ever win at Daytona by leading the most laps (28).  He finished just a car-length ahead of second-place driver Kasey Kahne.  “Obviously it was a good night. Same old Daytona, cars moving around and bouncing around, and handling came into play, and you saw a lot of passing and shuffling, and then there at the end we had the big wreck and we were fortunate to be in front of it. And really coming to the white I thought it was going to be the 33 first and us second, and then the caution came out and we could see the white flag. I was content about that. I knew those guys needed a good day, and I knew you never know what's going to happen on the last lap with people pushing and shoving from the back. But on the last restart, once the 24 pulled out and slowed those outside two lines down, that was pretty much the end of it.”

Jeff Gordon   
No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet  
Hometown: Vallejo  
3rd PLACE FINISH:  Gordon started from the fifth position and finished third after leading 13 laps.  Gordon was able to move from fifth in driver points to second with this finish.   “Man, I'm just happy to survive one of these restrictor plate races. It's been a while since we've done that. We had a pretty good night, car drove good, especially on the long runs, and we avoided the big ones and got ourselves in a good position to win the race. Got out in front, and I felt like I had a pretty good handle -- I liked being up front while those two guys were lined up; we were good.  But once they split down, one and two, they kind of faded, and I didn't know -- I thought they were passing one another, and instead they lined back up and I was just a sitting duck. At that point it was just about the restart, and got a good restart, was pushing Clint, and I don't know what happened. It just seemed like he was riding the brakes, and we weren't going anywhere. So I went to pass him, and that kind of just messed up our momentum to really have a shot at winning, so we're pretty happy to finish third.”

Jimmie Johnson  
No. 48 Lowe’s/KOBALT Tools Chevrolet 
Hometown: El Cajon  
3rd (-225)

31st PLACE FINISH:  Johnson, starting from the second position, was able to lead one lap.  On lap 149 he got caught up in a crash that damaged many cars.  This dropped him from second in the driver points to third.

AJ Allmendinger  
No. 43 Paralyzed Veterans of America/Mission: Able Ford 
Hometown: Los Gatos   

36th PLACE FINISH:  Allmendinger got caught up in an accident with Kyle Busch on lap 67.  He was not able to rebound from that and finished 36th after starting 21st.

Scott Speed   
No. 82 Red Bull Toyota  
Hometown: Manteca  
24th (-919)

10th PLACE FINISH:  Speed was able to take advantage of the accident that caught many cars towards the end of the race.  Starting from the 27th position he was able to finish 10th.  This was his second top-10 finish in 2010.

Robby Gordon   
No. 7 SpeedFactory.TV Toyota 
Hometown: Orange  
32ndin points

12th PLACE FINISH:  After starting back in the 32nd position, Gordon lead for one lap and was able to finish 12th.  This was his second highest finish in 2010 after his second-place finish two weeks prior in Sonoma.


Current top-12 contenders for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup playoffs are:

Pos, Driver, Points, Ldr
1, Kevin Harvick, 2684, 0 
2, Jeff Gordon, 2472, -212
3, Jimmie Johnson, 2459, -225 
4, Kurt Busch, 2439, -245
5, Denny Hamlin, 2400, -284
6, Kyle Busch, 2376, -308 
7, Matt Kenseth, 2322, -362 
8, Jeff Burton, 2319, -365 
9, Tony Stewart, 2251, -433 
10, Greg Biffle, 2234, -450 
11, Dale Earnhardt Jr., 2177, -507
12 Carl Edwards, 2170, -514


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