Race Review: Lenox Industrial Tools 301

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Welcome race fans to the seventeenth NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season. The race takes place at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Lauden, New Hampshire. This track is affectionately known as the “Magic Mile”. It’s a flat track, just over a mile long. There has been rain all weekend, so there was little time to practice. Qualifying got rained out on Friday, so they will line up according to owner points. Putting 14 Tony Stewart and 24 Jeff Gordon the front row. Tony crashed his car in practice, but changed the engine in his back-up car before what would have been qualifying, so he keeps his pole position. 09 is Brad Keselowski. He won in Talladega in this car. 36 is Patrick Carpentier. He sat on the pole last year in NH. 37 is Tony Raines. 78 is Regan Smith. He has made every race he has entered. And has finished them all. 51 Dexter Bean and local favorite, 27 Ted Christopher didn’t have the owner points or attempts, so they will go home.

47 Marcos Ambrose is not feeling well. Since there was rain over night, there will be a competition caution on lap 35 so they can check the tires. If there is a caution prior to that competition caution, they can change tires and make adjustments, but they cannot take fuel.

So, here we go! 24 and 2 Kurt Busch take off on the outside. 24 leads the first lap. 2 tries to get by 24 for the lead, but can’t get by. 42 Juan Pablo Montoya gets by 18 Kyle Busch for ninth. 2 finally takes the lead after many laps trying to get by. 24 and 16 battle for second. 14 slides back to seventh from the pole position. 99 Carl Edwards is having trouble getting by 39 Ryan Newman for fifth.

The first caution comes out during the commercial when 36 gets into the wall. It was something mechanical. 14 pits for adjustments, but cannot take fuel. 55 Michael Waltrip was too fast. 2 is leading and chooses to restart on the inside. They are double-file all the way around, with no clear leader running away.

The second caution comes out when 29 Kevin Harvick slides up and into 26 Jamie McMurray, putting him into the wall. 11 Denny Hamlin pits. 24 was leading when the caution came out, and he picks the inside to restart. They move the competition caution up to lap 45, since there weren’t enough laps raced under Green to decide what the tires are doing. 16 Greg Biffle and 24 battle for the lead. 16 gets loose.

The third caution comes out when 44 AJ Allmendinger spins around and doesn’t get going again. 26 Jamie McMurray is the Lucky Dog and gets his lap back. 66 Dave Blaney goes to the garage. 2 takes the lead. 18 and 48 Jimmy Johnson battle for fourth. 18 is smoking his brakes. 16 drives by 18. 42 and 48 battle.

The fourth caution is the competition caution and everyone can take fuel.18 couldn’t get out of his pit without hitting the car in front of him. 24 is out of the pits first, followed by 48 and 16. 24 has to take the outside, since 71 David Gilliland is on the inside and will pit when the Green Flag is about to fly. This lets 48 take the lead from the inside. 5 Mark Martin and 18 battle. 16 gets into the wall. 37 and 26 go to the garage. 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and 16 battle.

The fifth caution comes out during the commercial. 19 Elliott Sadler gets loose and gets into 82 Scott Speed. 82 spins 55 Michael Waltrip and they collect 7 Robby Gordon. 48 chooses the inside for the restart. 24 and 18 battle for second. 14 and 2 battle. 14 and 18 battle for third. 14 pulls ahead of 18. 12 David Stremme gets loose. 48 is in ugly traffic, with everyone battling each other and trying to stay ahead of the leader.

1 Martin Truex, Jr. starts Green Flag Pitting. 42 leads when 48 pits. 9 Kasey Kahne drives by 42 to get his lap back. 88 and 5 get by 42. 42 finally pits when everyone was getting by him to get their laps back. 11 leads when 42 pits. 43 Reed Sorenson leads when 11 pits. 7  leads when 43 pits, then pits himself.  When everyone has pitted, 48 is back in the lead.  48  is trying to lap 20 Joey Logano and 24 catches  the leader, 48. 5 and 18 battle for seventh. 5 gets by. 31 Jeff Burton and 18 battle for eighth.

The sixth caution comes our for debris. 2 and 24 come out of the pits neck-and-neck, but 24 was a few inches in front. The cars ahead of the leader get the wave around and they race back to the end of the field. 24 elects to Restart on the outside this time. 48 makes it three-wide for the lead with 24 and 2. 24 stays in the lead. 2 and 24 battle for the lead. 88 and 2 battle for second. 48 gets loose and falls to sixth.

The seventh caution comes out during the commercial. 98 Paul Menard gets the brakes locked up and drives into the wall. 24 Restarts on the outside. The eighth caution comes out at the Restart. 1 gets into 88, 18 gets into 1 from behind 1, sending him spinning. And then into 31 with everyone spinning. 18 thought he had a hole and took it, like he always does, but the hole wasn’t there. Involved were: 1, 29 Kevin Harvick, 31, 07 Casey Mears, 83 Brian Vickers, 00 David Reutimann, 6David Ragan, 26. There is a Red Flag for clean-up.

24 Restarts on the outside. 39 gets into the wall. 2 and 24 battle for the lead. 20 gets into 39 and 00 and cuts a tire and brings out the ninth caution. 11 gets by 18 for ninth. 2 slides up the track and falls back. 14 and 24 battle for the lead. The tenth caution comes out when 82 Scott Speed gets into the wall. He says “I’m not gonna lie, that hurt”. 20 Joey Logano is the Lucky Dog. 2 gets into 48 and many get by both of them.

14 takes the lead. 88 and 9 battle. 88 gets by. 48 and 9 battle. 48 gets by. 48 gets around 88 for eighth. 99 thinks he may have a loose wheel and pits. 48 gets by 5 for seventh. 18 pits to start Green Flag Pitting again. 5 stays out and leads.16 leads when 5 pits. 96 Bobby Labonte leads when 16 pits. 31 is back out in a “modified” car. 14 slides into 18 and gets by for eleventh. 39 leads when 96 pits. 24 gets by 00 for fourth. 55 pits. 39 is out of fuel and pits. 20 takes the lead when 39 ran out of gas. 39 has trouble getting the car fired up again.

The eleventh caution comes out for rain. The race is Red Flagged on lap 273 of 301.  It pours and 20 Joey Logano wins his first NASCAR Sprint Cup race by being out in front when the rain came. He isn’t the first to win his first race here with the rain shortening the race. Jeff Burton is the only driver to lead all 300 laps here.

Brought to you by Sheila Hawley.

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One Response to “Race Review: Lenox Industrial Tools 301”

  1. The Pep Boys Auto Guide To Car Care And Maintenance Says:

    The Pep Boys Auto Guide To Car Care And Maintenance…

    Welcome race fans to the seventeenth NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season. The race takes place at t […]…

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