In a race marked by intense action throughout, Matt Kenseth and the No. 20 car emerged victorious in the 2013 Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway.
The dramatic win gives the Joe Gibbs Racing driver his fifth victory of the season, as he edged out Kasey Kahne to take the checkered flag. Both Clint Bowyer and Kenseth locked up spots in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.
The second-place finish marked the eighth time Kahne's finished in the top five this season. An inability to make key passes down the stretch prevented him from showing up in victory lane once again. Jeff Gordon put in a solid performance with a seventh-place finish, while Dale Earnhardt Jr. rounded out the top 10.
|POS||Car #||Driver||MFG||Started||Laps||Laps Led|
|3||42||Juan Pablo Montoya||Chevrolet||16||500||0|
|10||88||Dale Earnhardt Jr||Chevrolet||19||500||32|
|18||17||Ricky Stenhouse Jr||Ford||27||497||0|
|35||56||Martin Truex Jr||Toyota||9||446||2|
Visit NASCAR.com for results and race times.
Denny Hamlin started the race off strong from the pole position, but he wasn't able to take advantage and finished the race in 28th place.
Bowyer would later take the lead from Hamlin, but he ran into some difficulty when a lapped car caused him to spin out. He would settle for a finish just outside the top 10 at No. 14.
Jimmie Johnson, the Chase for the Sprint Cup points leader, was another victim of a crash. In a race that saw 11 cautions, he was caught up in one of the more hectic collisions, and it cost him. He finished toward the back of the pack at No. 36.
With just 54 laps to go, a multiple-car wreck left many drivers with a disappointing finish and tempers flaring as the night race in Bristol headed toward the home stretch.
However, the leaders of the pack were unscathed by the pileup and continued their pursuit for the checkered flag. Kahne passed Juan Pablo Montoya, but he was just a bit too conservative in his attempts to take the lead over Kenseth and paid dearly for it.
2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Standings
|RK||DRIVER||POINTS||BEHIND||MONEY||WINS||POLES||TOP 5||TOP 10|
|7||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||714||-107||$3,940,478||0||1||5||13|
Complete standings found at ESPN.com.
NASCAR's Sprint Cup series will continue on Sept. 1 with the AdvoCare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The race will take place at 7 p.m. ET and be televised on ESPN. Denny Hamlin won the 2012 race.