Denny Hamlin returned to the track and raced until the first caution, giving way to Brian Vickers to run the remainder of the race. Unfortunately, Vickers was part of a 16 lap crash shortly after, triggered when Kyle Busch got into the back of Kasey Kahne, sending him into the wall and collecting numerous cars behind him. The move did help Hamlin collect 10 driver points.
News and Notes
Matt Kenseth received a lighter sentence in his appeal, having his win restored and points penalty reduced to just 12 points instead of 50. A huge win for Joe Gibbs Racing.
Kurt Busch is testing an Indy Car at Indianapolis this week. His goal is not to run this years Indy 500, but it is an option for next year.
Phoenix Racing, still looking for a sponsor, plans to exit the series after the Brickyard race in August.
Jeff Gordon will make his 700th consecutive start this Saturday night at Darlington.
Too tough to tame is how it is classified. That being said, experience seems to matter at this track. Jeff Gordon has finished over half of his races in the top five here, including seven wins. Denny Hamlin, who will return to full time driving this week, usually runs this track strong…he may be a bit off, just jumping into the car again this week. I like Kasey Kahne, who has won the pole four times in 10 starts, but has only managed four top 10s at Darlington. Aric Almirola seems to be everyone’s sleeper this week, but not so far, he has only one start at “the Lady in Black” and finished 19th. His run for five straight top 10s ends this week.