Michigan International Speedway
Hello race fans! This is the fifteenth race of the season, being held in Brooklyn, Michigan. This is a D-shaped two mile oval. I love this track. It is very wide and you can race three and even four wide with little problem. On the straight away the drivers all fan out on the track before getting back in line at the turn. And it’s so wide, you can drive the car wherever the car wants to go without worrying about getting into anyone. There are very few cautions here. Probably because there is enough room for everyone. One problem here, though. Rain is usually an issue at some point during the weekend. This weekend qualifying got rained out on friday. So they line up according to Owner points for this race. 45 today is Terry Labonte, filling in for Kyle Petty, who is in the Booth, helping with announcing the race. Terry got in with a past Champion provisional. 21 is Bill Elliott, who also got in on a past Champion provisional. The 70 car didn’t make it in. The car has no regular driver. The 34 car of Tony Raines also had to go home.
18 Kyle Busch leads the race from the points pole. 48 Jimmy Johnson gets by 31 Jeff Burton for second. The first caution comes out on lap three when 22 Dave Blaney spins. He broke an axle. 48 takes the lead after the restart. 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. gets by 31 for third. They are four wide and a little contact was made, but everyone goes on. 83 Brian Vickers is up to fourth, after starting eighteenth. 31 has fallen to tenth after starting second. 83 gets by 18 for second. 17 Matt Kenseth gets by 99 Carl Edwards for fourth. 83 catches 48, then takes the lead. 48 takes the lead back. 17 gets by 18 for third. 83 takes the lead. 12 Ryan Newman has debris on the grill, which is making his car overheat, and spit water.
83 gives up the lead to start Green Flag Pitting. 88 takes the lead. 55 Michael Waltrip leads when 88 pits. After all the pit stops, 83 is back in the lead. 22 is twenty-two laps down but back on the track. 40 Dario Franchitti is out. 19 Elliott Sadler gets by 31 for seventeenth. 12 is in the pits with the hood up. He had a severe vibration. 9 Kasey Kahne pits to start Green Flag Pitting again. 17 is in the lead after the pit stops. The second caution comes out for debris. 26 Jamie McMurray is the Lucky Dog, and gets his lap back. Everyone pits. Out of the pits, it’s 99, 17, 18, 83 and 48, the top five. There are twenty-two cars on the lead lap.
The third caution comes out for spinning 2 Kurt Busch. Wally says he’s been “off the pace and scaring himself all race.” 15 Paul Menard is the Lucky Dog. The top seven cars stay on the track. 17 takes the lead from 99. 96 J. J. Yeley has gone to the garage. 24 Jeff Gordon has fallen back to twentieth. 88 gets by 20 Tony Stewart for sixth. 88 catches 18. Green Flag Pitting begins once again. 20 leads. 84 A. J. Allmendinger leads, then pits. He comes into his pit too fast and overshoots it. And has to back up. 77 Sam Hornish, Jr. leads. After the Green Flag Pitting is complete, 17 is back in the lead.
The fourth caution comes out during the commercial. 43 Bobby Labonte spins. 2 Kurt Busch is the Lucky Dog. 66 Scott Riggs is caught speeding entering pit road. 48 stays out to lead. 77 stayed out with 48. 17 nearly ran over an official who got into the way when he was trying to leave the pits. The fifth caution comes out when 6 David Ragan turns 7 Bobby Gordon into the wall. Robby blows a tire and gets back into the wall. 10 Patrick Carpentier is the Lucky Dog. 24 was too fast exiting the pits. 99 gets by 83 for sixth. 77 and 48 battle for the lead. 17 gets by 18 for third. 83 gets by 99 for fifth. 77 is pitting. 48 is pitting. 18 is pitting. 20 is pitting. 16 is pitting. They don’t think they’ll be able to make it to the end on fuel. 16 runs over his air hose as he leaves the pits. 6 leads, then pits. 88 and 26 battle for the lead. 26 takes the lead. 88 and 26 battle again.
The sixth caution comes out when 77 spins himself into the infield. 88 doesn’t have much gas, but there’s not many laps left, so he stays out. He’s driving on the apron, and keeps turning the engine on to get going, and then off again to coast. 8 Mark Martin is out of fuel. The Green Flag comes out with three to go, and just after the White Flag comes out signaling the final lap, caution comes out for spinning 10. The race ends under caution with 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. winning his first points race of the season. It has been seventy-six races since he’s been to Victory Lane. This is his first win at Michigan. He runs out of gas just past the Finish Line, and is pushed to Victory Lane. I thought it was a pretty good gas mileage race once again here in Michigan.
Brought to you by Sheila Hawley
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