CaliConnection: How our California NASCAR drivers fared at Pocono

Several NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers have California connections, including 5-time Champion Jimmie Johnson who hails from El Cajon. Below is a roundup of how each California driver fared at the Good Sam RV Insurance 500 at Pocono Raceway over the weekend.

SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY, Calif. (August 8, 2011) – After sustaining injuries due to a practice crash earlier in the week, Brad Keselowski, driver of the No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge, rallied back at Pocono Raceway to bring home his second NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victory of the year while El Cajon’s Jimmie Johnson placed 4th on the day.

Below is how our other Golden Staters fared in this past weekend's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event:

Jimmie Johnson  
No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet   
Hometown: El Cajon  
2nd in points

4th PLACE FINISH: After starting 18th, Johnson fought his way up to the Top 10 where he remained for the majority of the race.  He never gave up and brought home a 4th place finish.  Johnson remains second in the points and sits just nine back from points leader Carl Edwards. “Very very proud of my guys. We’ve been working really hard. It feels good to be up there racing for the lead.”


Kevin Harvick   
No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet  
Hometown: Bakersfield 
5th in points

14th PLACE FINISH: Harvick started 10th on the day, but battled a loose racecar.  He was able to salvage his run with a 14th place finish. Harvick lost two positions in the points, leaving him in 5th place in the Sprint Cup Points Standings, 20 points behind leader Carl Edwards. “We’ve just been extremely loose since we started the race. Then traffic, the car won’t turn the front, but just snaps the back as it comes up off the corner. We’ve really struggled with getting it right.”


Jeff Gordon   
No. 24 Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet 
Hometown: Vallejo  
7th in points    

6th PLACE FINISH: Although Gordon started deep in the field he broke the Top 10 by mid-race and crossed the finish line in 6th place.  His finish enabled him to remain in the 7th place in points. “I knew we had a good car and knew we needed to make maybe a few adjustments, but most importantly, just get that track position. My team has been just awesome, not just today, but lately. From the pit stops to the good calls and adjustments that Alan (Gustafson, crew chief) is making got us in the position to work our way up through there.”


AJ Allmendinger  
No. 43 Best Buy Ford   
Hometown: Los Gatos  
17th in points

19th PLACE FINISH:  Tight conditions plagued Allmendinger during the race and led him to end the day in the 19th spot. He remains 17th in the Driver standings – only 38 behind 12th place Clint Bowyer.


David Gilliland   
No. 34 Front Row Motorsports Ford 
Hometown: Riverside  
30th in points 

23rd PLACE FINISH:  After qualifying 24th, Gilliland was able to stay mid-pack and finished the race in 23rd. “We were much more competitive than we’ve been the last few weeks, so I’m happy with the progress we’ve made and excited about bringing the changes that we figured out on the car today to step up our competition level as a team.”


Casey Mears  
No. 13 GEICO Toyota   
Hometown: Bakersfield 
32nd in points

36th PLACE FINISH:  An ignition problem ended the Bakersfield native’s day on lap 30.  Mears remains 32nd in the points.


Robby Gordon   
No. 7 SPEED Energy Dodge  
Hometown: Orange  
34th in points

35th PLACE FINISH:  Gordon looked to be heading to the front, but an electrical issue on lap 79 sent him to the garage for the remainder of the race.  He remains in the Top 35 in the points. “We had planned on racing the whole race.  The ignition wire coming out of the fire wall to the engine came undone or it overheated the ignition boxes.” 


Mike Skinner   
No. 60 Big Red Toyota     
Hometown: Susanville  
56th in points

Mike Skinner failed to qualify for the Good Sam RV Insurance 500.


Scott Speed   
No. 37 Max Q Motorsports  
Hometown: Manteca   
70th in points

40th PLACE FINISH:  After qualifying 40th, Speed was only able to complete 16 laps before experiencing electrical problems, taking him out of the race. He finished the Good Sam RV Insurance 500 in the same spot he started in. 

 

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Driver Leaders:

Position, Driver, Points
1, CARL EDWARDS , 720
2, JIMMIE JOHNSON, 711
3, KYLE BUSCH, 709
4, KURT BUSCH, 706
5, KEVIN HARVICK , 700
6, MATT KENSETH, 694
7, JEFF GORDON, 668
8, RYAN NEWMAN, 658
9, TONY STEWART, 642
10, DALE EARNHARDT JR., 641
11, DENNY HAMLIN, 618
12, CLINT BOWYER, 600

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