Aaron's 499 at Talladega 2012 Results: Reaction, Leaders and Post Race Analysis

Donald Wood@@Donald_WoodFeatured ColumnistMay 6, 2012

Even if you aren’t a fan of NASCAR, you will love the kind of racing that goes on at the Aaron’s 499 at Talladega every year.

With speeds close to 200 mph and the best drivers in the world, this is the most exciting show on asphalt every season. “The Big One” is what they call the inevitable crash that collects half the field at this track, so that’s something to look for if you aren’t a fan of the actual racing.

Let’s be honest; even the most hardcore racing fans love seeing the crashes as long as everyone is safe.

Check back to this article for the complete post-race leaderboard, reaction and analysis from Talladega!


Update at 7:00 p.m. ET by Timothy Rapp

Brad Keselowski won this year's Aaron's 499, aided by a bit of a bump on the restart. The details, from Mike McCarter of AL.com:

On Sunday, Keselowski sped away from the field after a restart—aided by an aerodynamic push from Kyle Busch—on a green-white-checkered finish to win the Aaron's 499.

Busch said "we gave the win away" when he wasn't able to pass Keselowski on the third turn of the last lap.

Matt Kenseth, with teammate Greg Biffle on his bumper, had the lead going into the restart but got such separation from the field that it enabled Keselowski and Busch catch up.

It's Keselowski's second win of the season—he also won at Bristol in March.

Full race results and reaction to follow.


Race Results (via NASCAR.com)

Finish Driver Make Sponsor
Brad Keselowski Dodge Miller Lite
Kyle Busch Toyota M&M's
3 Matt Kenseth Ford Best Buy
4 Kasey Kahne Chevrolet Farmers Insurance
5 Greg Biffle Ford 3M / O'Reilly Auto Parts
6 Clint Bowyer Toyota Aaron's / Alabama National Champions
7 David Ragan Ford Front Row Motorsports
8 Trevor Bayne Ford Motorcraft / Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center
9 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Chevrolet National Guard / Diet Mountain Dew
10 Jeff Burton Chevrolet Caterpillar
11 Jamie McMurray Chevrolet Bass Pro Shops / Tracker Boats
12 Aric Almirola Ford Verifone Sail
13 David Gilliland Ford Taco Bell
14 Marcos Ambrose Ford Stanley
15 AJ Allmendinger Dodge Shell / Pennzoil-AAA
16 Travis Kvapil Toyota Burger King / Dr Pepper
17 Paul Menard Chevrolet Turtle Wax / Menards
18 Casey Mears Ford GEICO
19 Michael Waltrip Toyota Aaron's "Color your way to Talladega"
20 Kurt Busch Chevrolet Phoenix Construction Services
21 Bobby Labonte Toyota Bush's Baked Beans
22 David Reutimann Chevrolet Tommy Baldwin Racing
23 Denny Hamlin Toyota FedEx Express
24 Tony Stewart Chevrolet Office Depot / Mobil 1
25 Kevin Harvick Chevrolet Rheem
26 Joey Logano Toyota Dollar General
27 Robert Richardson Jr. Toyota North Texas Pipe
28 Martin Truex Jr. Toyota NAPA Auto Parts
29 Terry Labonte Ford C&J Energy
30 Dave Blaney Chevrolet Golden Corral
31 Carl Edwards Ford Fastenal
32 Juan Montoya Chevrolet Target / Kraft
33 Jeff Gordon Chevrolet DuPont 20 Years
34 Landon Cassill Toyota Burger King / Dr Pepper
35 Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet Lowe's
36 Ryan Newman Chevrolet Bass Pro Shops / Tracker Boats
37 Bill Elliott Toyota NEMCO Motorsports
38 Tony Raines Chevrolet Little Joe's Autos
39 David Stremme Toyota Stock Car Steel and Aluminum
40 Regan Smith Chevrolet Furniture Row / Farm American
41 Joe Nemechek Toyota AMFMEnergy.com / Pellet & Wood Stoves
42 Josh Wise * Ford Morristown Driver's Service
43 Michael McDowell Ford Curb Records


Twitter Reaction

Nate Ryan of USA TODAY had this fun little tidbit after the race:

Postrace nugget to warm @2spotter heart. Brad Keselowski told him on cooldown lap: "Best race you've spotted yet. Great work, dude." #nascar

— Nate Ryan (@nateryan) May 6, 2012


STATS NASCAR sees that tidbit and raises it some historical precedence:

Brad Keselowski's win marked the first time the a Roger Penske owned car won a Sprint Cup race at Talladega. #NASCAR



David Newton of ESPN noted that Keselowski pulled this one off sans controversy, unlike his win at the track three years ago. Oh, and he did it in style:

Wow. Brad @Keselowski blew the doors off everybody on that last lap. And no controversy. #nascar

— David Newton(@DNewtonespn) May 6, 2012

Here's the controversy from that race.


Where: Talladega Superspeedway, Talladega, Alabama

When: Sunday, May 6, 12 p.m. ET

Watch: FOX

Live Stream: TrackPass

Listen: Motor Racing Network


Starting Order

1. No. 24 Jeff Gordon

2. No. 22 AJ Allmendinger

3. No. 9 Marcos Ambrose

4. No. 43 Aric Almirola

5. No. 5 Kasey Kahne

6. No. 99 Carl Edwards

7. No. 16 Greg Biffle

8. No. 14 Tony Stewart

9. No. 55 Michael Waltrip

10. No. 17 Matt Kenseth

11. No. 21 Trevor Bayne

12. No. 42 Juan Montoya

13. No. 2 Brad Keselowski

14. No. 39 Ryan Newman

15. No. 26 Josh Wise

16. No. 56 Martin Truex Jr.

17. No. 27 Paul Menard

18. No. 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.

19. No. 48 Jimmie Johnson

20. No. 29 Kevin Harvick

21. No. 18 Kyle Busch

22. No. 11 Denny Hamlin

23. No. 1 Jamie McMurray

24. No. 15 Clint Bowyer

25. No. 13 Casey Mears

26. No. 38 David Gilliland

27. No. 30 David Stremme

28. No.32 Terry Labonte

29. No. 31 Jeff Burton

30. No. 20 Joey Logano

31. No. 78 Regan Smith

32. No. 34 David Ragan

33. No. 51 Kurt Busch

34. No. 10 David Reutimann

35. No. 98 Michael McDowell

36. No. 97 Bill Elliott

37. No. 87 Joe Nemechek

38. No. 36 Dave Blaney

39. No. 23 Robert Richardson Jr.

40. No. 33 Tony Raines

41. No. 83 Landon Cassill

42. No. 93 Travis Kvapil

43. No. 47 Bobby Labonte



Jeff Gordon

With six career wins at Talladega, Jeff Gordon is not only the Aaron’s 499 pole winner, he is the favorite to steal the whole show. While Gordon’s recent track record at Talladega isn’t overly impressive, a third-place finish in this race in 2011 proves he has what it takes to start and finish at the front of the pack in Alabama.


Dale Earnhardt Jr

The definition of Dale Earnhardt at Talladega is feast or famine. While Junior has five wins on the track, none have come since 2004. With a newer team and a comfort level he has missed for years, Earnhardt will look to build on his fourth-place finish at last year’s event as a building block.


Tony Stewart

While it’s true that Tony Stewart only has one win at Talladega, this is a guy that has a stronger car now than he’s had since he was running Pontiacs. As much as one win can scare a betting man, his ten top-fives show that he is always there at the finish. It’s just all about being in the right spot at the right time.


Check back for more on NASCAR as it comes, and check out Bleacher Report’s NASCAR Page to get your fill of all things motorsports.


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