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Harvick wins at Phoenix as Johnson Pads lead

Johnson 3rd Kenseth 23rd
Sunday, November 10, 2013

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Harvick leads to the flag
Kevin Harvick passed an out-of-gas Carl Edwards on the next-to-last lap to win Sunday's AdvoCare 500 at Phoenix International Raceway as Jimmie Johnson padded his advantage in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series standings to strengthen his quest for a sixth championship heading to next weekend's season finale.

Johnson finished third to take a 28-point lead over 23rd-place finisher Matt Kenseth into next Sunday’s final race of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway after an adventurous day for both prime championship contenders. Harvick is the only other driver with a mathematical shot at winning the championship, but he would need a disaster from the two front-runners to overcome his 34-point deficit and clinch his first title.

The victory was Harvick’s fourth of the season, fourth on the 1-mile Arizona track and 23rd of his career in NASCAR’s top series. He led 70 of the 312 laps and was 1.796 seconds ahead of runner-up Kasey Kahne at the finish. Johnson, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Kurt Busch completed the top five.

Johnson started from the pole position but dropped to sixth place by the end of the first lap. His No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevy slid high after contact from Joey Logano shortly after a three-wide battle for the top spot with early leader Denny Hamlin.

In the 162nd lap, he also was forced high out of the racing groove after the trio of Johnson, Edwards and Harvick ran out of room heading into Turn 1.

Kenseth’s adventures predominantly came on pit road. The former series champion got off cycle just before the halfway point and battled an ill-handling car through much of the day, reporting to crew chief Jason Ratcliff that his car was “undriveable.” Worse, a miscommunication on a 164th-lap stop under caution resulted in a dramatically sluggish trip to pit lane that lasted nearly 26 seconds and dropped Kenseth from seventh to 29th in the running order.

Harvick, ironically, ran out of gas as he made his final pit stop in the 267th lap, slowing on the backstretch. After a quick refueling visit, he rallied.

Results

Pos No. Driver Make Start Laps Led Status
1 29 Kevin Harvick Chevrolet 9 312 70 Running
2 5 Kasey Kahne Chevrolet 7 312 41 Running
3 48 Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet 1 312 1 Running
4 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr Chevrolet 11 312 2 Running
5 78 Kurt Busch Chevrolet 8 312 0 Running
6 42 Juan Pablo Montoya Chevrolet 19 312 0 Running
7 18 Kyle Busch Toyota 4 312 0 Running
8 56 Martin Truex Jr Toyota 10 312 0 Running
9 22 Joey Logano Ford 3 312 33 Running
10 39 Ryan Newman Chevrolet 17 312 31 Running
11 2 Brad Keselowski Ford 12 312 27 Running
12 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr Ford 27 312 0 Running
13 16 Greg Biffle Ford 18 312 1 Running
14 24 Jeff Gordon Chevrolet 5 312 49 Running
15 14 Mark Martin Chevrolet 16 312 0 Running
16 27 Paul Menard Chevrolet 13 312 0 Running
17 31 Jeff Burton Chevrolet 15 312 0 Running
18 1 Jamie McMurray Chevrolet 36 312 1 Running
19 43 Aric Almirola Ford 21 312 0 Running
20 15 Clint Bowyer Toyota 6 312 0 Running
21 99 Carl Edwards Ford 23 312 36 Running
22 47 Bobby Labonte Toyota 26 311 0 Running
23 20 Matt Kenseth Toyota 14 311 0 Running
24 38 David Gilliland Ford 33 311 2 Running
25 55 Elliott Sadler Toyota 22 311 0 Running
26 9 Marcos Ambrose Ford 20 311 0 Running
27 13 Casey Mears Ford 30 311 0 Running
28 11 Denny Hamlin Toyota 2 311 18 Running
29 36 J.J. Yeley Chevrolet 35 311 0 Running
30 7 Dave Blaney Chevrolet 42 310 0 Running
31 51 Justin Allgaier Chevrolet 25 309 0 Running
32 98 Michael McDowell Ford 39 308 0 Running
33 10 Danica Patrick Chevrolet 32 302 0 Running
34 32 Timmy Hill Ford 38 285 0 Running
35 34 David Ragan Ford 34 282 0 Running
36 35 Josh Wise Ford 28 280 0 Brakes
37 95 Reed Sorenson Ford 24 266 0 Engine
38 87 Joe Nemechek Toyota 43 193 0 Engine
39 83 David Reutimann Toyota 37 187 0 Accident
40 30 Cole Whitt Toyota 29 142 0 Accident
41 93 Travis Kvapil Toyota 31 129 0 Engine
42 40 Landon Cassill Chevrolet 40 63 0 Brakes
43 33 Tony Raines Chevrolet 41 29 0 Brakes

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