Found October 29, 2012 on Fox Sports:
Honestly, everything kind of unfolded Sunday afternoon to some degree the way it was anticipated at Martinsville Speedway. We talked about it a lot pre-Martinsville. We knew we would have a fair amount of cautions in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race; we had 11 cautions for 64 laps. At the same time, we cycled through one set of green-flag pit stops, so all that was pretty much in line with what we've seen here before. The drivers who we anticipated were going to run well and were going to be contenders to win the race pretty much were. We knew the Hendrick drivers were going to be strong, and they were, with Jimmie Johnson leading them to the win. Even Dale Earnhardt Jr. who qualified 20th, looked on his way to a finish near the top five or inside the top 10 until things maybe kind of went the wrong direction on not pitting there at the end. For several laps, we had three Hendrick drivers in the top five and four in the top seven or top eight. Probably the biggest disappointment of the day, and, honestly, my heart kind of goes out to him because this truly was the dying blow on this championship in 2012, was Denny Hamlin. Obviously, he had a fast race car. And everyone knows how well Hamlin runs at Martinsville. He showed that again Sunday. He started fifth, got caught speeding on pit road his first pit stop, had to go to the rear of the field and restart 34th. He fought his way back up there and actually took the lead. Then, lo and behold, he got busted for speeding again and had to restart 26th. Then he worked his way back up there and then, of all things, it's almost just like typical Hamlin -- a part we never hear of there being an issue with, the master switch that controls all of the power to the car, the bolt broke off of it, and they had to go to the garage area for major repairs. Now he's 49 points out, and it's not going to happen in 2012. Certainly this has been a turnaround season for Hamliin. He went from a season where he only won one race last year, to winning five this year. And he has won at all three of the venues that are left on the schedule -- Texas Motor Speedway, Phoenix International Raceway and Homestead-Miami Speedway. Then, even though Johnson won the race, it still was a very pivotal weekend for Brad Keselowski. If he indeed comes back and wins this championship, then he and his race team will look back on not just this race, but this race weekend and say, "You know what, that was a pivotal weekend in our championship." Those guys worked their guts out all weekend long, qualified 32nd and seemingly weren't making up a lot of ground throughout the race, but then they kind of did. The next thing you know, they're running in the top 10 and the call that was made there at the end when they stayed out, they knew this wasn't going to be a race-winning move. If they had not tried something, they were probably barely going to finish inside the top 10. I think what they were thinking is, "The caution comes out with 26 laps to go, there's oil on the racetrack, it's going to take a little while to clean it up and we're probably going to get more cautions. So we may really buy a good finish here." And, honestly, a sixth-place finish was a good finish. If you had told them on Friday, "We'll give you a sixth-place finish right now; will you take it and leave?", I guarantee you they would have snatched it up and they would have been gone.
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