KANSAS CITY, Kan. Denny Hamlin got the confetti shower. Mother Nature got the last laugh.
"Well, (it was the) conditions," sighed Brian Pattie, crew chief for local favorite Clint Bowyer, one of 11 casualties Sunday at the STP 400. "I don't think they anticipated 60 degrees and cloudy."
We were supposed to see Saturday's sequel at Kansas Speedway: 68-69 degrees, sunny, and breezy. Instead, it was about 10 degrees cooler, the sky was a wash of grey soup, and a gust persisted from the north at roughly 20 miles per hour. Fans dressed for early May and wound up being greeted by a slice of mid-October.
In the pits, pre-race setups turned into a crapshoot. When Pattie threw caution to the wind, it landed somewhere west of Olathe.
"It was pretty important because the forecast itself changed 10 degrees just in a matter of 24 hours," offered Darian Grubb, Hamlin's crew chief. "So we pretty much had to guess what was going to happen."
Grubb and the Hamlin team guessed right. Several di...