Hendrick Dominance Continues, Johnson Wins at Dover

Johnson celebrates in victory lane -Via Getty Images-

By Jason Schultz

Jimmie Johnson won his third race in the last four weeks Sunday afternoon at Dover International Speedway. Johnson dominated the entire race. Hendrick Motorsports continues its dominance with its fourth straight victory. All four Hendrick cars were up front all day and Johnson ended up in victory lane. Jimmie Johnson led the first six laps before pole-sitter Mark Martin took the lead.

The first caution of the day came out early when controversy started on lap ten, when we saw the biggest wreck in the 2012 season. Tony Stewart made contact with Landon Cassill coming out of turn two and that turned Cassill sideways. Regan Smith was below Stewart and when Stewart went low to avoid making more contact with Cassill again, Smith turned Stewart. Cars started sliding down the banked backstretch and more cars piled in. After Juan Pablo Montoya slid in, Dave Blaney got into Michael McDowell and McDowell spun into the wreck collecting a hand-full of other cars. Scott Speed made a hard hit on Landon Cassill after the cars were still slowing down and the track became impassable.

The red flag came out to clean up all of the debris that were scattered on the backstretch. This incident was similar to the 2008 wreck we saw at Dover, cars started wrecking and blocked the backstretch and then cars started piling in. Overall, 13 cars were involved in the wreck, they consisted of; Casey Mears, Tony Stewart, Reed Sorenson, Stephen Leicht, Dave Blaney, David Gilliland, Juan Pablo Montoya, Regan Smith, Scott Speed, Landon Cassill, Joe Nemechek, Travis Kvapil and Michael McDowell. Tony Stewart commented about the wreck by saying he was in the “wrong place at the wrong time.”

Considering we’ve been to Daytona and Talladega already this season, it is surprising that the biggest wreck of the season occurs at Dover. The red flag lasted for almost 20 minutes but they were getting ready to go back to racing. On lap 30, Jimmie Johnson passed Mark Martin for the lead after Martin had led every lap but six up to this point. The first round of green-flag pit stops began on lap 69. Johnson and Martin swapped the lead once again after the pit stops.

By lap 90, Johnson had retaken the lead. The second caution of the day came out on lap 111 for David Reutimann who lost an engine. On lap 165, one of the favorites to win the race, Carl Edwards, hit the wall after a blown tire. Edwards would have to go behind the wall for repairs but came back out and ended up finishing 26th. Kyle Busch experienced problems around halfway when his engine let go. Kyle commented in the garage area that he “couldn’t keep up with the track,” After a decent last few weeks for Busch, this was a disappointment for all of the No.18 crew.

The next caution came out on lap 226 for debris in turn four. An issue that could of cost Kevin Harvick the race was when he came into the pits third and overshot his pit stall, costing him valuable track position. On the restart, Jeff Gordon was the leader. On lap 246, Jimmie Johnson took the lead from Jeff Gordon. Gordon started experiencing major issues with his car and he had to pit. After another round of green-flag pit stops, Jeff Gordon, who didn’t pit, was the race leader. With 76 laps to go, Jeff Gordon gave up the lead to pit and Jimmie Johnson would be the new leader. With 55 laps to go, Kurt Busch blew an engine to end his day.

The third blown engine of the day occurred with 39 laps to go when Jeff Burton, who had been having a great run, blew an engine. Coming to the checkered flag, Kevin Harvick was unable to catch Johnson and Johnson went on to win his second point’s race of the season. Jimmie Johnson said in victory lane that the victory was a “team effort.” He also thanked long-time NASCAR broadcaster, Dick Bergeren, on a great career. Bergeren, 70, is retiring from broadcasting after NASCAR on FOX’s final broadcast of the season today in Dover.

 Jimmie Johnson and Hendrick Motorsports continue their winning ways at Dover Next week the Sprint Cup Series heads to newly repaved Pocono Raceway for an exciting race. Make sure to tune-in to TNT for next week’s race.

Results via Nascar.com

FIN

ST

CAR

DRIVER

MAKE

SPONSOR

PTS/BNS

LAPS

STATUS

1 2 48 Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet Lowe’s Madagascar 48/5 400 Running
2 6 29 Kevin Harvick Chevrolet Jimmy Johns 42/0 400 Running
3 5 17 Matt Kenseth Ford Best Buy 42/1 400 Running
4 17 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Chevrolet AMP Energy / Diet Mtn. Dew / National Guard 41/1 400 Running
5 4 15 Clint Bowyer Toyota 5-hour Energy 39/0 400 Running
6 12 43 Aric Almirola Ford Jani-King / Smithfield 38/0 400 Running
7 18 56 Martin Truex Jr. Toyota NAPA Auto Parts 37/0 400 Running
8 11 20 Joey Logano Toyota The Home Depot 36/0 400 Running
9 13 5 Kasey Kahne Chevrolet HendrickCars.com 35/0 400 Running
10 21 9 Marcos Ambrose Ford Stanley 34/0 400 Running
11 7 16 Greg Biffle Ford 3M / Heilind (EMD) 33/0 400 Running
12 16 2 Brad Keselowski Dodge Miller Lite 32/0 400 Running
13 14 24 Jeff Gordon Chevrolet DuPont 32/1 400 Running
14 1 55 Mark Martin Toyota Aaron’s Dream Machine 31/1 400 Running
15 3 39 Ryan Newman Chevrolet Quicken Loans 29/0 400 Running
16 23 22 AJ Allmendinger Dodge Shell / Pennzoil 28/0 400 Running
17 20 27 Paul Menard Chevrolet Menards / Pittsburgh Paints 27/0 400 Running
18 10 11 Denny Hamlin Toyota FedEx Freight / Autism Speaks 27/1 400 Running
19 24 1 Jamie McMurray Chevrolet Bass Pro Shops / Allstate 25/0 400 Running
20 22 47 Bobby Labonte Toyota Scott Products 24/0 399 Running
21 28 34 David Ragan Ford MHP / 8 Hour Alert 24/1 398 Running
22 15 31 Jeff Burton Chevrolet BB&T 22/0 364 Engine
23 42 93 Travis Kvapil Toyota Burger King / Dr Pepper 21/0 348 Running
24 9 51 Kurt Busch Chevrolet Phoenix Construction Services 20/0 338 Engine
25 29 14 Tony Stewart Chevrolet Mobil 1 / Office Depot 19/0 331 Running
26 19 99 Carl Edwards Ford Subway 18/0 318 Running
27 26 78 Regan Smith Chevrolet Furniture Row / CSX “Play it Safe” 17/0 306 Running
28 31 42 Juan Montoya Chevrolet Target 16/0 296 Running
29 8 18 Kyle Busch Toyota M&M’s 15/0 202 Engine
30 38 32 Reed Sorenson Ford FAS Lane Racing 0 124 Accident
31 39 10 David Reutimann Chevrolet Tommy Baldwin Racing 13/0 110 Engine
32 41 36 Dave Blaney Chevrolet Tommy Baldwin Racing 12/0 65 Accident
33 32 30 David Stremme Toyota Inception Motorsports 11/0 63 Overheating
34 34 249 J.J. Yeley Toyota America Israel Racing / JPO Absorbents 10/0 41 Overheating
35 37 33 Stephen Leicht * Chevrolet Little Joes A
utos.com
9/0 29 Accident
36 36 119 Mike Bliss Toyota Humphrey Smith Racing 0 23 Steering
37 43 23 Scott Riggs Chevrolet North Texas Pipe 7/0 21 Vibration
38 27 83 Landon Cassill Toyota Burger King / Dr Pepper 6/0 9 Accident
39 35 87 Joe Nemechek Toyota AM / FM Energy Wood & Pellet Stoves 0 9 Accident
40 30 38 David Gilliland Ford Autism Speaks 4/0 9 Accident
41 40 13 Casey Mears Ford GEICO 3/0 8 Accident
42 33 98 Michael McDowell Ford Phil Parsons Racing 2/0 8 Accident
43 25 179 Scott Speed Ford Team Kyle / Koma Unwind 1/0 8 Accident

 

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