Johnson wins for record 8th time at Dover
by Associated Press
Sep 29, 2013 | 2391 views |  0 comments | 17 17 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Jimmie Johnson, top, talks with Dale Earnhardt Jr., bottom, in Victory Lane after winning a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series auto race Sunday at Dover International Speedway. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
Jimmie Johnson, top, talks with Dale Earnhardt Jr., bottom, in Victory Lane after winning a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series auto race Sunday at Dover International Speedway. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
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DOVER, Del. — Jimmie Johnson held off teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr. down the stretch to win for a record eighth time at Dover International Speedway.

Johnson had shared the mark of seven wins on the concrete mile with Bobby Allison and Richard Petty. Led by Johnson, the entire top 10 Sunday was made up of Chase for the Sprint Cup championship drivers.

"To do anything that Richard or Bobby has done is quite an accomplishment," Johnson said.

Joey Logano, Jeff Gordon and Kyle Busch rounded out the top five. Kevin Harvick, Matt Kenseth, who won the first two Chase races, Ryan Newman, Greg Biffle and Clint Bowyer completed the top 10.

Earnhardt had one of the fastest cars, but he missed pit road and gave up the lead early in the race. He had a strong enough No. 88 Chevrolet to get back into the race and contend for his first win of the season but couldn't pass Johnson.

"We left everybody in the mirror. We were clicking off some laps," Earnhardt said. "But just not fast enough to get to Jimmie."

Kenseth kept his points lead even as he fell short in trying to become the first driver to win the first three Chase races. He holds an eight-point lead over Johnson as the Chase shifts to Kansas.

"I know that 20 is going to be awfully strong for the rest of the stretch," he said.

Johnson dominated as he usually does at Dover and led 243 of the 400 laps to help extend his Chase record with his 23rd career win in 93 starts in NASCAR's version of the playoffs. He swept Dover in 2002 and 2009 and won races in 2005, 2010 and 2012.

Johnson has his sights set on a bigger piece of NASCAR history. He's in the hunt for his sixth Cup championship, which would put him one behind Petty and Dale Earnhardt Sr. for most in series history.

He caught a huge break when Earnhardt slowed during a green-flag pit stop and missed the entrance to pit road. He went from holding a 3.7-second lead on Johnson to trailing by more than 9 seconds after he finally made his stop.

Johnson took the lead — and took off. Even smart pit strategy that included a late four-tire stop wasn't enough to boost Earnhardt past his Hendrick Motorsports teammate.

"The mistake I made coming on to pit road and missing pit road completely (cost us)," Earnhardt said. "If I had not given up that track position and had a smart enough race to keep the lead when it counted, right at the end we might have won the race. It would have been hard to get by us just like it was hard to get by Jimmie."

NASCAR Sprint Cup-AAA 400 Results

At Dover International Speedway

Dover, Del.

Lap length: 1 miles

(Start position in parentheses)

1. (8) Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 400 laps, 145.4 rating, 48 points, $243,836.

2. (1) Dale Earnhardt Jr., Chevrolet, 400, 126.3, 43, $192,010.

3. (11) Joey Logano, Ford, 400, 108.3, 41, $166,068.

4. (16) Jeff Gordon, Chevrolet, 400, 110.3, 41, $168,296.

5. (14) Kyle Busch, Toyota, 400, 113.8, 40, $162,068.

6. (12) Kevin Harvick, Chevrolet, 400, 91.4, 38, $147,296.

7. (2) Matt Kenseth, Toyota, 400, 118.3, 38, $132,826.

8. (3) Ryan Newman, Chevrolet, 400, 106.7, 37, $126,993.

9. (19) Greg Biffle, Ford, 400, 93.2, 35, $104,585.

10. (23) Clint Bowyer, Toyota, 400, 99.3, 35, $129,068.

11. (7) Jamie McMurray, Chevrolet, 400, 94.4, 33, $115,605.

12. (22) Brian Vickers, Toyota, 400, 82.9, 0, $95,460.

13. (20) Kasey Kahne, Chevrolet, 399, 79.6, 31, $99,810.

14. (25) Jeff Burton, Chevrolet, 399, 74.1, 30, $93,010.

15. (10) Martin Truex Jr., Toyota, 399, 82.7, 29, $116,835.

16. (24) Marcos Ambrose, Ford, 398, 65.9, 28, $110,249.

17. (15) Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Ford, 398, 74.8, 27, $129,021.

18. (21) Paul Menard, Chevrolet, 398, 68.5, 26, $112,401.

19. (29) Mark Martin, Chevrolet, 397, 62.6, 25, $125,260.

20. (18) Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 397, 77.3, 24, $99,285.

21. (9) Kurt Busch, Chevrolet, 397, 73.5, 23, $108,155.

22. (5) Aric Almirola, Ford, 397, 68, 22, $118,446.

23. (13) Juan Pablo Montoya, Chevrolet, 397, 70.7, 21, $108,474.

24. (26) Casey Mears, Ford, 395, 57.7, 20, $107,168.

25. (27) David Ragan, Ford, 395, 54.6, 19, $105,443.

26. (17) A J Allmendinger, Toyota, 395, 61.3, 18, $102,643.

27. (33) Cole Whitt, Toyota, 394, 47.2, 0, $91,893.

28. (39) David Reutimann, Toyota, 394, 49.9, 16, $89,532.

29. (31) Danica Patrick, Chevrolet, 394, 42.8, 15, $79,835.

30. (28) David Gilliland, Ford, 393, 52.1, 15, $80,685.

31. (30) Travis Kvapil, Toyota, 392, 43.9, 13, $84,510.

32. (36) Ryan Truex, Chevrolet, 392, 43.5, 0, $84,310.

33. (40) Dave Blaney, Chevrolet, 391, 40.4, 11, $76,160.

34. (32) J.J. Yeley, Chevrolet, 390, 35.9, 10, $75,985.

35. (4) Carl Edwards, Ford, 385, 74.7, 9, $115,335.

36. (42) Timmy Hill, Ford, 381, 27.8, 8, $75,590.

37. (6) Brad Keselowski, Ford, 355, 82.3, 7, $128,891.

38. (37) Landon Cassill, Chevrolet, suspension, 275, 46.6, 0, $70,350.

39. (41) Joe Nemechek, Toyota, suspension, 168, 30.4, 0, $66,350.

40. (43) Tony Raines, Chevrolet, vibration, 154, 28.5, 0, $62,350.

41. (35) Reed Sorenson, Ford, brakes, 139, 28, 0, $58,350.

42. (38) Josh Wise, Ford, brakes, 128, 26.7, 0, $54,350.

43. (34) Michael McDowell, Ford, brakes, 107, 32.7, 1, $50,850.

Race statistics

Average Speed of Race Winner: 130.909 mph.

Time of Race: 3 hours, 3 minutes, 20 seconds.

Margin of Victory: 0.446 seconds.

Caution Flags: 4 for 21 laps.

Lead Changes: 19 among 8 drivers.

Lap Leaders: D.Earnhardt Jr. 1-25; M.Kenseth 26-30; D.Earnhardt Jr. 31-39; D.Gilliland 40; Ky.Busch 41-70; R.Newman 71-75; D.Earnhardt Jr. 76-117; J.Gordon 118-119; J.Johnson 120-165; R.Newman 166; M.Kenseth 167-197; J.Johnson 198-229; D.Earnhardt Jr. 230; J.Johnson 231-310; D.Earnhardt Jr. 311-312; J.Gordon 313; C.Bowyer 314; J.Johnson 315-370; D.Earnhardt Jr. 371; J.Johnson 372-400.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Led, Laps Led): J.Johnson, 5 times for 243 laps; D.Earnhardt Jr., 6 times for 80 laps; M.Kenseth, 2 times for 36 laps; Ky.Busch, 1 time for 30 laps; R.Newman, 2 times for 6 laps; J.Gordon, 2 times for 3 laps; C.Bowyer, 1 time for 1 lap; D.Gilliland, 1 time for 1 lap.

Top 12 in Points: 1. M.Kenseth, 2,149; 2. J.Johnson, 2,141; 3. Ky.Busch, 2,137; 4. K.Harvick, 2,110; 5. J.Gordon, 2,110; 6. G.Biffle, 2,108; 7. R.Newman, 2,101; 8. C.Bowyer, 2,098; 9. Ku.Busch, 2,094; 10. D.Earnhardt Jr., 2,092; 11. C.Edwards, 2,084; 12. J.Logano, 2,083.
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