Found November 04, 2012 on Race Review Online:
The haymaker Jimmie Johnson delivered Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway turned out to be an eight-point swing. Taking advantage of a late caution and four fresh tires to Brad Keselowski’s two, Johnson pulled away from Keselowski in a green-white-checkered-flag finish to win the AAA Texas 500 and tighten his grip on a possible sixth Sprint Cup Series championship. Johnson finished .808 seconds ahead of Keselowski, the race runner-up, and increased his lead in the standings to from two points to seven. The victory was Johnson’s fifth of the season, his second at Texas and the 60th of his career. For the second straight week, Johnson won a Chase for the Sprint Cup race from the pole. Kyle Busch ran third, followed by Matt Kenseth, Tony Stewart and Clint Bowyer. Keselowski held the lead on two previous restarts — one a breathtaking side-by-side battle with the five-time champion — but Johnson pulled ahead in the one that counted. As hard as the top two Chase drivers raced each other on Sunday, Johnson felt it took the level of competition between them to new heights. “The way we raced this afternoon, this evening — that’s what’s different,” Johnson said. “That’s the first time that we’ve really engaged at that level and raced each other that hard. “To his credit, he did a nice job of getting right to the edge, and we brought home race cars. We weren’t wadded up looking like a bunch of fools over there, handing the 5 [Kasey Kahne] and the 15 [Bowyer] a big gift.” Had Keselowski held on to the lead for the final two laps, he would have been the Chase leader by one point. Johnson, however, saved his best restart for the two-lap finish that sent the race one lap beyond its scheduled distance of 334 laps. “I knew I wasn’t going to be able to execute every restart, and Jimmie did a great job on the last one,” Keselowski said. “I had to choose between wrecking him and winning the race, and it didn’t seem right to wreck him. “Ran him hard, and we’re going to keep him honest. I know if we keep running like this that we won’t be beat.” After NASCAR called the sixth caution of the race on lap 274, for debris on the backstretch, Keselowski entered the pits as the leader but dropped eight spots on the exchange of stops. First, Keselowski slid to the front of his pit stall on the stop. Compounding the problem, the No. 10 Chevrolet of Danica Patrick, whose pit stall was immediately in front of Keselowski’s, stopped at the top of her box, blocking Keselowski’s exit. By the time the No. 2 crew pushed the Blue Deuce back to give Keselowski clearance, he had lost the eight spots, as other lead-lap cars rolled past. Keselowski spent the subsequent 30-lap green-flag run making up ground. On Lap 307, he passed Matt Kenseth for the fourth position, with Johnson running second behind Kyle Busch. Three laps later, Marcos Ambrose’s accident in Turn 2 brought out caution No. 7, and Keselowski regained the lead with a two-tire stop. Busch was second off pit road, ahead of Johnson, who restarted third on Lap 316. Keselowski surged to the lead, clearing Busch on the backstretch, and held the top spot until the caution on Lap 321 for an incident involving Kahne, Jeff Gordon and Greg Biffle in Turn 2 slowed the field. Kahne got the worst of the contact, lost a lap and saw his title hopes all but evaporate. Keselowski and Johnson raced side-by-side and a hairbreadth from losing control after the restart on lap 327, with Keselowski pulling out to an eight-car-length lead, but Mark Martin’s wreck on the frontstretch two laps later set up the two-lap dash to the finish. Busch, who had a ringside seat from his third-place finishing position, was impressed by the intensity of the racing in front of him. “It was exciting,” he said. “Those guys up there, man, they were battling, and they battled hard, giving it everything they’ve got. That’s what they’ve got to do. [If] you’re going to win a championship in the Sprint Cup Series, that’s what you’re going to have to make of it.” Race results 1. Jimmie Johnson 2. Brad Keselowski 3. Kyle Busch 4. Matt Kenseth 5. Tony Stewart 6. Clint Bowyer 7. Dale Earnhardt Jr. 8. Kurt Busch 9. Kevin Harvick 10. Greg Biffle 11. Joey Logano 12. Ryan Newman 13. Martin Truex Jr. 14. Jeff Gordon 15. Aric Almirola 16. Carl Edwards 17. Sam Hornish Jr. 18. Jamie McMurray 19. Jeff Burton 20. Denny Hamlin Sprint Cup standings 1. Jimmie Johnson 2. Brad Keselowski, -7 3. Clint Bowyer, -36 4. Kasey Kahne, -58 T5. Matt Kenseth, -72 T5. Jeff Gordon, -72 7. Denny Hamlin, -73 T8. Tony Stewart, -80 T8. Martin Truex Jr., -80 10. Greg Biffle, -83 11. Kevin Harvick, -101 12. Dale Earnhardt Jr., -151 13. Kyle Busch, 1048 14. Ryan Newman, 969 15. Carl Edwards, 965 NASCAR Wire Service, photo courtesy of NASCARmedia.com The post Jimmie Johnson defeats Brad Keselowski, extends championship lead at Texas appeared first on Race Review Online.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Johnson holds off Keselowski in win

Jimmie Johnson regained the lead on the final restart, beating Brad Keselowski in an ending two-lap shootout to win Sunday at Texas and add to his NASCAR Sprint Cup points lead with two races left. Johnson led 168 laps, but found himself chasing toward the end. The third restart in the late laps proved to be the charm for No. 48 Chevrolet. During that restart on the 333rd of 334...

Johnson holds off Keselowski to win at Texas

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) -- Jimmie Johnson and Brad Keselowski are in quite a fight for the NASCAR Sprint Cup championship. With two rounds to go, five-time champion Johnson now has a bigger edge after a slugfest in Texas that included some hard banging late. Johnson regained the lead on the final restart on the 334th of 335 laps before holding off the young challenger in an ending...

Keselowski heads to Phoenix needing a win

By Reid Spencer FORT WORTH, Tex. -- Brad Keselowski was right on the money in most of what he said Sunday night, but he was dead wrong about the one thing that might matter most. Keselowski was right about the nature of the racing in the AAA Texas 500. It was breathtaking. After the next-to-last restart in the AAA Texas 500, Keselowski refused to give up the lead, taking his car...

Brad Keselowski AAA Texas 500 Race Recap

FORT WORTH, Texas – Brad Keselowski, driver of the Penske Racing No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS), finished second in the AAA Texas 500 – the eighth race in the 2012 Chase for the Championship – at Texas Motor Speedway (TMS) on Sunday evening. Keselowski and series points leader, Jimmie Johnson, provided fans with a thrilling finish as...

Brad Keselowski/Kyle Busch Texas Press Conference – 2nd & 3rd place VIDEO

Drivers Brad Keselowski and Kyle Busch talked to the media after finishing second and third in Sunday’s AAA Texas 500 from the Texas Motor Speedway.  Video courtesy of NASCAR Media Group.

CUP: No Holding Back For Keselowski

Brad Keselowski was fastest in both practices Saturday…

RotoWire NASCAR Barometer Phoenix

NASCAR fans couldn't have asked for much more in Texas, as the top two drivers were neck-and-neck down the stretch, with Jimmie Johnson passing Brad Keselowski on a restart with just two laps remaining. Johnson extended his points lead to seven with the victory, and just two races stand between him and a remarkable sixth championship. For a second consecutive week, Keselowski...

Jimmie Johnson outlasts Brad Keselowski for Texas win

FORT WORTH, Tex. — The haymaker Jimmie Johnson delivered Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway turned out to be an eight-point swing. Taking advantage of a late caution and four fresh tires to Brad Keselowski’s two, Johnson pulled away from Keselowski in a green-white-checkered-flag finish to win the AAA Texas 500 and tighten his grip on a possible sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship...

Texas: NASCAR green flag start time, pole, and starting lineup

The drivers are at Texas Motor Speedway for the AAA Texas 500. Jimmie Johnson is on the pole for the second week in a row, after winning from that same position, just last weekend at Martinsville. Johnson is your points leader in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Title, leading Brad Keselowski by 2 points. Keselowski will roll of the grid in eighth position. Keselowski was fastest...

Team Chevy AAA Texas 500 Race Recap

FORT WORTH – Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet, displayed a remarkable will to win on Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway (TMS) as he scored his second NASCAR Sprint Cup series (NSCS) win in a row, and his fifth win of 2012.  Johnson led seven times for a race-high 168 laps; and was able to pass and hold off his closest championship rival, Brad Keselowski, for the win in a...

AAA Texas 500 from Texas Final Practice Times

Brad Keselowski led the way with a lap of 29.300 seconds in the final practice for the AAA Texas 500 from Texas. Rounding out the top five was Clint Bowyer, Matt Kenseth, Jimmie Johnson, and Carl Edwards. Pos # Driver Team Time Behind 1 2 Brad Keselowski Miller Lite Dodge 29.300 Leader 2 15 Clint Bowyer 5-hour Energy Toyota 29.317 -0.017 3 17 Matt Kenseth Ford EcoBoost...
NASCAR News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.