CaliConnection: How our NASCAR and INDYCAR California Drivers Fared at Kansas and Long Beach

SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY, Calif. (April 22, 2013) – Matt Kenseth made it two-in-a-row at Kansas Speedway, winning the STP 400 on Sunday.  Kenseth qualified his No. 20 Home Depot/Husky Toyota on the pole and became the first driver since Jimmie Johnson in 2008 to win at Kansas Speedway from the first starting position.

Below is how our California drivers fared in Kansas.

Jimmie Johnson
No. 48 Lowe’s / Kobalt Tools Chevrolet
CaliConnection: El Cajon
1st in points

3rd PLACE FINISH:    “At times I felt like I had a shot to win with my Kobalt Tools Chevrolet and we just didn’t have enough for Matt (Kenseth) and Kasey (Kahne)  there at the end, but a very solid performance for our Kobalt Tools Chevrolet SS.”

Kevin Harvick
No. 29 Bad Boy Buggies Chevrolet
CaliConnection: Bakersfield
12th in points

12th PLACE FINISH:  "This was not the result we were looking for today. We had a fast car, but it was just too loose at the end and the final pit stop didn't work in our favor either. We were better on four tires, but a lot of teams took two on the final stop, so we had a lot of ground to make up. Hopefully, we can find some better luck next weekend at Richmond (International Speedway)."

Jeff Gordon
No. 24 Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet  
CaliConnection: Vallejo
15th in points    

13th PLACE FINISH:  "We weren’t the best car, but we made some great improvements throughout the weekend.  The race pace just kind of came to us and the conditions in the race.  We are still lacking a few things, but all in all I thought it was a great effort."

Casey Mears
No. 13 GEICO Ford
CaliConnection: Bakersfield
24th in points

34th PLACE FINISH:  Mears got caught up in an accident on lap 216 and was done for the day.

David Gilliland 
No. 38 Long John Silver’s Ford
CaliConnection: Riverside
33rd in points 

23rd PLACE FINISH: Gilliland was able to move up five spots on the day, finishing the event in 23rd place.

AJ Allmendinger 
CaliConnection: Los Gatos
36th in points

Allmendinger did not compete in Sunday’s NASCAR race.

Scott Speed
CaliConnection: Manteca
40th in points

Speed did not compete in Sunday’s race.

Josh Wise
No. 35 MDS Transport Ford
CaliConnection: Riverside
49th in points

26th PLACE FINISH:  The Riverside native moved up 10 spots on the day, finishing in 26th position.

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Driver Leaders:

Position, Driver, Points

1, JIMMIE JOHNSON, 311
2, KASEY KAHNE, 274
3, BRAD KESELOWSKI, 273
4, GREG BIFFLE, 264
5, DALE EARNHARDT, JR., 263
6, CARL EDWARDS, 262
7, KYLE BUSCH, 257
8, MATT KENSETH, 252
9, CLINT BOWYER, 247
10, PAUL MENARD, 240 
11, JAMIE MCMURRAY, 227
12, KEVIN HARVICK, 224

NEXT NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES RACE: Saturday, April 27 @ Richmond.

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SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY, Calif. (April 22, 2013) – Takuma Sato (No. 14 ABC Supply Co./A.J. Foyt racing Honda) became the first driver from Japan to win an INDYCAR race, prevailing in the 39th Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Sunday.  Sato, making his 52nd IZOD IndyCar Series start, overtook Ryan Hunter-Reay (No. 1 DHL Chevrolet) for second on Lap 23 and assumed the point on Lap 30 when race leader
Will Power pitted under yellow.

Below is how our INDYCAR drivers fared in Long Beach.

Charlie Kimball
No.  83 NovoLog FlexPen Honda
CaliConnection: Camarillo
11th in points

21st PLACE FINISH:  "It was a little disappointing result but there were a lot of positives.  The No. 83 team did a great job in pit lane.  We ran up front.  We had the speed and the pace to run consistently up front.  We're looking forward to taking what we learned this weekend to the Texas test and Brazil.  We have a good pit lane position from qualifying for Brazil.  From here, we'll go back to qualifying consistently and staying up front."

Oriol Servia
No. 22 Panther DRR Chevrolet
CaliConnection: Santa Monica
14th in points

6th PLACE FINISH:  "I had the best car probably of the whole season in the race. It was awesome. On one restart, I don't know what happened to Simon [Pagenaud] but he slowed down in the straight and I broke the front wing but even with that we were one of the fastest cars on track. I was saving fuel but I was flying. I was so happy."

JR Hildebrand
No. 4 National Guard
Panther Racing Chevrolet
CaliConnection: Sausalito
15th in points

5th PLACE FINISH:  "I'm really proud of the run we had and the pit crew guys did such an awesome job, because we made up three or four of those spots in the pits on our last stop. We struggled in the first stint and were going backwards, but we had a great strategy and ended up on the sticker reds in the end and I was able to pass several guys there at the end just using the overtake.

AJ Allmendinger 
No. 2 IZOD Team Penske Chevrolet 
CaliConnection: Los Gatos
26th in points

23rd PLACE FINISH:  "I thought today was going to be a good day for the Penske Automotive Chevrolet, we were posting lap times that were consistent with those up front. Unfortunately we just couldn't get the track position we needed and having the gear box break in Turn 5 ended the day. But it's another step in the learning process and should make us better for Indy."

IZOD IndyCar Series Driver Leaders:

Position, Driver, Points
1, HELIO CASTRONEVES, 99
2, TAKUMA SATO, 93
3, SCOTT DIXON, 89
4, MARCO ANDRETTI, 87
5, JUSTIN WILSON, 81
6, RYAN HUNTER-REAY, 73
7, GRAHAM RAHAL, 66
8, WILL POWER, 62
9, SIMONA DE SILVESTRO, 62
10, JAMES HINCHCLIFFE, 61

  
NEXT IZOD INDYCAR SERIES RACE: Sunday, May 5 @ Streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil

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