CALIFORNIACONNECTION: How our Cali NASCAR drivers fared at Pocono
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 Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway Sunday, August 1.
San Bernardino County, Calif. (August 2, 2010) – Kevin Harvick (4th), Jeff Gordon (6th) and Jimmie Johnson (10th) all finished in the top ten as the 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup season continued at Pocono Raceway Sunday in the Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500. With his finish, points leader Harvick added five points to his lead over Jeff Gordon.
Below are how the Golden State drivers competed in this past weekend's Sprint Cup event:
No. 29 Shell/Pennzoil Chevrolet
1st in points
4th PLACE FINISH: Points leader Harvick moved up from his 14th place starting position to finish fourth on the day. In 20 starts at Pocono, Harvick has four top five finishes. "It was a long day. I got into the wall on the first lap there and we fought a little bit tight. But all in all they did a great job. The No. 16 (Greg Biffle) just got so far out there on that last restart that I thought we had a chance to win the race but we just could never run him back down. So, it was a good race and we'll go on to the next one."
No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet
6th PLACE FINISH: Gordon led 39 laps, second only to teammate Jimmie Johnson’s 96. Gordon, second in the standings, is 189 points behind Harvick with five races left before the field for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup is set. “I’m bummed out that we just can’t catch a break,” he said. “It just seems like when we get ourselves in position to win the race, it just seems like we can’t catch that break. You make those breaks by working hard, team work, good fast race cars and putting yourself in the right place. The way the weather was today, it didn’t work out for us and that has kind of been the story for us as far as victories are concerned.”
No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet
Hometown: El Cajon
10th PLACE FINISH: The No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet tangled with Kurt Busch late in the race, triggering a crash and a red-flag period that was extended by rain, “The day started off awesome for us,” Johnson pointed out. “I don’t know what kind of happened there at the two-thirds mark. We just lost a little speed and the other guys got faster. We were just a fifth to 10th place car at that point.”
No. 43 Insignia HDTV Ford
Hometown: Los Gatos
24th PLACE FINISH: Despite a 7th position start, Allmendinger couldn’t muster a better finish than 24th, dropping one place to 22nd in driver’s points.
No. 82 Red Bull Toyota
26th PLACE FINISH: Three hours later, Speed could only move up one position on the day. Despite his 26th place finish, the Manteca native didn’t lose any ground in driver’s points, remaining in 26th position.
No. 7 SpeedFactory.TV Toyota
Gordon did not compete in Sunday’s event.
No. 37 Gander Mountain Ford
30th PLACE FINISH: Gilliland started 37th on the day, picking up seven spots and 73 drivers points before the day came to an end.
No. 36 Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet
36th PLACE FINISH: Mears only completed 62 laps before brake problems forced him behind the wall.
Current top-12 contenders for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup playoffs are:
Position, Driver, Points, Leader Points
1, Kevin Harvick ,3080, 0
2, Jeff Gordon, 2891, -189
3, Denny Hamlin, 2820, -260
4, Jimmie Johnson, 2803, -277
5, Jeff Burton, 2757, -323
6, Kyle Busch, 2724, -356
7, Kurt Busch, 2722, -358
8, Tony Stewart, 2719, -361
9, Matt Kenseth, 2682, -398
10, Carl Edwards, 2666, -414
11, Greg Biffle, 2652, -428
12, Clint Bowyer, 2564, -516
# # #
About Auto Club Speedway
This October the playoffs go golden! The Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup roars into the Golden State and Southern California's Auto Club Speedway. Experience a weekend full of speed beginning with NASCAR Qualifying Day (Oct. 8), followed by the NNS CampingWorld.com 300 (Oct. 9) and culminating with Southern California’s “playoff” race – the Pepsi MAX 400 (Oct. 10).
Free parking, unbelievable menu items and a full weekend of entertainment, live music and fun await fans in the Speedway’s Opportunity, California FanZone.
Pepsi MAX 400 tickets start at $35 and AAA members receive Show Your Card & Save discounts, including a special section with half-priced tickets for kids 12 and under. And don’t forget children 12 and under can sign up for the FREE Auto Club Speedway Lefty’s Kids Club membership to receive FREE admission on Friday and Saturday.
For more information or to purchase tickets call 800-944-RACE (7223) or visit www.autoclubspeedway.com.