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NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race 2012: Reaction, Leaders & Post-Race Analysis

CHARLOTTE, NC - MAY 21:  Carl Edwards, driver of the #99 Aflac Ford, races Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #5 Lowe's 5% Every Day Chevrolet, during the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 21, 2011 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Jason Smith/Getty Images
Donald WoodFeatured ColumnistMay 19, 2012

With the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series All-Star Race Saturday night, fans from all over the world have their attention focused on the beautiful Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Years of history culminate in one of the wildest races of the season, and we have all the coverage you’ll need.

Keep it here for updates, reactions, and results as the races begin and throughout the entire wild night of action!

Update: Saturday, May 19th at 8:13 p.m.

Jimmie Johnson, and his team, are $1 million richer. The 5-time Sprint Cup champion claimed the top spot in the NASCAR's winner take all All-Star race. 

This unique format is broken up into segments, and in all they drive just 90 laps. That means he took home a little over $11,000 per lap. Not bad for a day's work. It is also not unfamiliar ground for Johnson. He has won this event twice before. 

JJ spent most of the 90 laps hanging back, and making sure his car was ready for the final 10 laps, and it was ready. Johnson led all 10 laps after the restart. It was clear early in that final 10 laps that no one else would have the car to catch him. He joins Dale Earnhardt and Jeff Gordon as the only three-time winners of this event. 

Pos.Driver
 1Jimmie Johnson       
 2Brad Keselowski
 3Matt Kenseth 
 4 Kyle Busch 
 5Dale Earnhardt Jr. 
 6 Kevin Harvich 
 7Marcos Ambrose 
 8Kurt Busch 
 9Kasey Kahne 
 10 Ryan Newman 

 

 

Update: Saturday, May 19th at 8:13 p.m.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. cruised to a victory in the 40 lap Sprint Showdown to earn a spot in the All-Star race. AJ Allmendinger finished in second, and also locked in a spot for the All-Star race. 

Jr.'s car looked fantastic all race. He certainly figures to be a factor in the All-Star race. 

They have yet to announce who won the fan vote, to get the final entry spot for the All-Star race coming later tonight. 

 

Where: Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C.

When: Saturday, May 19 at 9 p.m. EDT

Watch: SPEED

Live Stream: TrackPass

Listen: Motor Racing Network

 

Race Lineup

Marcos Ambrose

Trevor Bayne

Greg Biffle

CHARLOTTE, NC - MAY 18:  Kurt Busch, driver of the #51 Phoenix Construction Services Chevrolet, stands in the garage during practice for the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 18, 2012 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by J
Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

Clint Bowyer

Kurt Busch

Kyle Busch

Carl Edwards

Jeff Gordon

Denny Hamlin

Kevin Harvick

Jimmie Johnson

Kasey Kahne

Matt Kenseth

CHARLOTTE, NC - MAY 18:  Greg Biffle,(L) driver of the #16 3M/American Red Cross Ford, talks with Matt Kenseth, (R) driver of the #17 Fifth Third Bank Ford, before the start of practice for the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Ma
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Brad Keselowski

Mark Martin

Paul Menard

Ryan Newman

David Ragan

Regan Smith

Tony Stewart

Sprint Showdown winner

Sprint Showdown second place

Sprint fan vote winner

 

Drivers to Watch

CHARLOTTE, NC - MAY 18:  Brad Keselowski drives the #2 Miller Lite Dodge during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 18, 2012 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Brad Keselowski

With a heated Truck Series race Friday night, Brad Keselowski will be looking to get his car into victory lane to satisfy his need for redemption. Keselowski is one of the youngest drivers in the series and he will look at this race like a mini-championship that will put him in the top five at least, when all is said and done.

 

Kurt Busch

While I don’t think he will be a factor in the win, his recent off-track meltdowns and blowups have fans wanting to see what’s next. The hope is that Busch ruins someone’s night with his reckless behavior which causes a pit road battle. At least that’s what I’m hoping for.

 

CHARLOTTE, NC - MAY 18:  Jimmie Johnson climbs in the #48 Lowe's Patriotic Chevrolet during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 18, 2012 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images for
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Jimmie Johnson

After getting back into the winner’s circle at the Southern 500, Jimmie Johnson heads to the Charlotte Motor Speedway, a track that he has dominated on over his career. If Johnson can bring that all-out mentality to Saturday’s race, he will factor in the outcome.

 

Prediction: Dale Earnhardt Jr.

There is no doubt that NASCAR’s most popular driver will win his way into the All-Star race Saturday night with the fan’s vote. If Junior does get into the field, there is no doubt that he will adopt the checkers-or-wreckers mentality and win the whole thing.

 

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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