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Dale Earnhardt Jr. Wins NASCAR Nextel Cup Sunday

July 10th 2005

Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the NASCAR Nextel Cup at the USG Sheetrock 400 in Joliet Illinois Chicago Speedway Sunday.  Dale started in the 25 position, and spent the majority of the race near the 10th spot in his number 8 Chevrolet. 

Earnhardt said "I thought we had a top-10, maybe a top-five carůMy guys on pit road won the race for me. Got me out front with two tires."

Matt Kenseth was disappointed with his 2nd place finish, some five car-lengths back (just 4 tenths of a second).  He led 176 of the 267 laps, but lost first place because he chose to change all four tires falling behind at his final pit stop.

 Kenseth said "You always try to be a gracious loser but it's a tough one when you lead all day and we had the field by two or three tenths depending on how hard I wanted to run it."

 

This race may have come down to pit strategy.  With just 24 laps to go a debris caution brought on a decision for Kenseth.  Should he change two or four tires, or continue the race.  The crew chief, Robbie Reiser made the decision to change all four.

The chiefs decision may have cost Kenseth the race, but the driver kept it professional and respectful.  "I can't really blame Robby. We were kind of a sitting duck. A lot of guys were going to either stay out or take two tires," Kenseth said. "Overall, it was a great day, just a tough one to lose."

Jimmy Johnson, the series points leader finished in third place after starting in pole position.   After this victory, Earnhardt moved up to 13th place, but is still 491 points behind Johnson.


By Dan Wilson
Best Syndication Staff Writer

 


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Copyright 2005 Best Syndication                                            Last Updated Sunday, July 11, 2010 01:18 AM