NASCAR Race Review: 400


Welcome NASCAR fans to my NASCAR blog. This week’s NASCAR race review is of the nineteenth race of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season, the 400 taking place at the Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, IL. 1 Jamie McMurray won the Coors Light Pole Award with a speed of 183.542 mph and 29.421 seconds. 48 Jimmie Johnson starts next to him on the front row. 09 is Bobby Labonte. 36 is Casey Mears. 32 is Mike Bliss. 55 Michael McDowell, 66 Dave Blaney and 64 Todd Bodine did not qualify for the race.

Chicagoland Speedway is one of four tracks that Jimmie Johnson has not won at. Can he win this week and check this off his list of tracks to win at? 400 miles at this 1.5 mile track is 267 laps. No cars have to go to the rear.

So, here we go! 1 chooses the outside for the start of the race. 48 takes the lead before the Line and leads the first lap. 16 Greg Biffle pulls ahead of 1 for second. 1 and 14 Tony Stewart battle for third, with 14 taking the spot. 24 tries to get by 1 for third, but can’t do it. 14 goes under 16 for second. 9 Kasey Kahne and 56 Martin Truex, Jr.  battle for ninth, with 56 getting by. 78 Regan Smith is up ten spots.  14 is fastest on the track right now. 24 Jeff Gordon and 99 Carl Edwards battle for seventh, with 99 getting by. 16 and 00 David Reutimann battle for fourth. 00 takes the spot. 00 and 16 split 13 Max Papis and 00 gets by 56.

The first caution comes out during the commercial when 26 David Stremme gets into the wall. 09 Bobby Labonte gets the free pass back onto the lead lap. 14 has a long pit when his jack man slips the jack in the seam in his pit. 47 Marcos Ambrose has missing lug nuts. 48 comes out of the pits first. They restart on lap 43.

1 gets by 56 for second. 42 Juan Pablo Montoya, 99 and 24 are three wide racing for position. 24 and 42 Juan Pablo Montoya battle and 24 gets by. 31 Jeff Burton and 43 A. J. Allmendinger battle and 31 finally gets by. 99 lets 24 by. 1 is closing in on the leader, 48. 18 Kyle Busch gets by 29 Kevin Harvick and 2 Kurt Busch. 19 Elliott Sadler gets by 5 Mark Martin and 5 fights back, but can’t get by. 18 and 29 get by 2. 29 and 77 Sam Hornish, Jr. battle, but 29 can’t get by.

42 gets by 14 and 16, into seventh. 14 gets by 16 for eighth. 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. gets by 39 Ryan Newman. And we come to Green Flag Pitting. 48 tries to pit, but has too much rear brake and misses entering the pits. 1 takes the lead. After it all, 1 is leading. 99 and 83 Reed Sorenson battle and 99 gets by. 48 catches and passes 56 for second. 43 scrapes the wall. 48 catches leader, 1.

The second caution comes out during the commercial for debris on the apron of the track. 39 Ryan Newman gets the free pass back onto the lead lap. 1 comes out of his first pit stall first. 2 is in the pits with the hood up, making major repairs. 1 chooses the inside for the restart and pulls away. 16 gets loose.

The third caution comes out when 48 spins after getting close to 56. 78 Regan Smith is the Lucky Dog and gets back onto the lead lap. 33 Clint Bowyer and 31 battle 99 for position. Both get by. 5 and 77 get by 20 Joey Logano. 17 Matt Kenseth goes to the apron to avoid 5 who is loose. 33 gets by 56 for third. 31 gets by 56. 16 and 56 battle for seventh and 16 finally gets by. 48 gets by 18 for 20th. 42 says he has a vibration. 6 David ragan and 88 battle for fourteenth and 6 gets by.

24 takes the lead. 00 and 1 battle for second. 00 finally gets by. 48 is running tight and gets into the wall, using up his right front tire. He has to pit. 14 gets by 56 for eighth. The fourth caution comes out for spinning 21 Bill Elliott. 7 Robby Gordon locks up the brakes and gets into 21. They both lift off. 77 Sam Hornish, Jr. gets the free pass onto the lead lap. 24 leads them into the pits and back out of the pits. 31 had trouble with a tire not coming off.

24 chooses the inside for the restart. 1 and 33 battle for second, but 33 keeps the spot. 99 slides backwards.  16 is loosing spots. He may be blowing up with his new engine. 29 goes to the garage. 00 gets by 1 for third. 78 gets by 18. 00 gets by 33 for second. 24 and 00 battle for the lead, but 00 can’t get by. They battle again, but 00 still can’t get by. 00 finally takes the lead from 24 during the commercial.

The engine on 16 finally gives up, but he stays on the apron and there is no caution. There is more Green flag Pitting and 33 leads. 99 leads. 42 leads. 00 says he has a vibration. 82 spins. 99 gets by 24 for second. 78 touches the wall while 00 tries to lap him. There was no caution before the White Flag.

And 00 David Reutimann wins the 400. There was no late caution to shuffle up the field. The race got to play itself out to the end. Exciting, in my opinion. To me, the chase is like having a debris caution with a handful of laps to go to create more excitement. It changes the way a race unfolds. It changes the way the season unfolds. NASCAR was better before the chase where drivers were racing into the top ten instead of being locked into the top twelve. This race was a good race. The leader got to win with nothing changing the outcome.

Denny Hamlin Tweeted about late cautions changing the race outcome. And I have to agree with him. Late cautions change the outcome of the race. And not always best for the leader. In my opinion, the chase does the same thing. It changes things. But not really to have the right driver win. Each week and each race should unfold naturally, without any help to be more exciting. Racing is already exciting each week.

This was Reutimann’s first win of this season and his second career win. Jeff Burton moves up a spot. Clint Bowyer moves into the 12th spot and 88 moves out of the top 12. Reutimann moves up two spots.

Brought to you by Sheila Hawley


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One Response to “NASCAR Race Review: 400”

  1. Henry.Jenkins Says:

    Bowyer needs to move up and fast! His track record has been very promising and he cannot afford to slip in these series if RCR racing team has to come on top.

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