The Frontstretch: Auto Club 500 Complete As of 3:30 EST; Click Here To See The Winner by Thomas Bowles -- Monday February 25, 2008

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After the warm weather and fantastic finish that got NASCAR off to a solid start at Daytona, the sport was expecting to continue building momentum out West.

Instead, its endured a three-day debacle of a marathon that has its reputation taking a hit, and its teams ready to leave as soon as humanly possible.

After a weekend filled with cold weather and bizarre circumstances, the Cup Series attempted to race Sunday — but couldn’t finish the job. Rain and dangerous track conditions caused by seeping water on the track through “weeper” areas in the turns forced the postponement of the event until 1:00 EST (10:00 AM PST) Monday afternoon. 87 laps have been completed; right now, Jimmie Johnson is the leader with Travis Kvapil in second place, having taken two tries on his most recent pit stop. Kyle Busch, Greg Biffle, and Kasey Kahne round out the current Top 5 finishers.

Understandably, your favorite Frontstretch columns have been pushed back due to the weather; keep it right here for updates on the event, and a full slate of news and commentary to follow what’s been one of the weirdest NASCAR scenarios in recent memory.

UPDATE: As of 3:30 EST, the Auto Club 500 has been completed. In a race led in huge chunks by Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon, it looked like it was the same old Hendrick story in terms of dominating Car of Tomorrow events.

But as the race wound down to the final laps, someone finally found a way to crash their party.

Carl Edwards ran down both Hendrick cars over the final 25 laps Sunday, finally pushing his way by Johnson for good with 13 laps to go en route to snagging the victory at California. The fourth consecutive win at the Spring Race for Roush Fenway Racing, Edwards’ No. 99 Ford was a contender throughout before putting their best foot forward in the final 150 miles of the event.

“It feels really good to be in Victory Lane,” said Edwards after the race before dedicating the win to an ailing crew member, gas man Joe Karasinski.

Behind Edwards, Johnson came home second, followed by Gordon, who was able to nurse a blown engine home after being saved by a caution flag with half a lap to go in the race. That yellow, for Dale Jarrett’s wreck in turn one, locked Kyle Busch in 4th and Matt Kenseth in 5th. Martin Truex, Jr., Tony Stewart, Kevin Harvick, Kasey Kahne, and Ryan Newman rounded out the Top 10 finishers.

Stay with Frontstretch throughout the night for more post-race information, news, and commentary on the second race of the Cup season.

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Today on the Frontstretch:
NASCAR Easter Eggs: A Few Off-Week Nuggets to Chew On
Five Points To Ponder: NASCAR’s Take-A-Breath Moment
Truckin’ Thursdays: Top Five All-Time Truck Series Drivers
Going By the Numbers: A Week Without Racing Can Bring Relief But Kill Momentum


©2000 - 2008 Thomas Bowles and Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!

02/25/2008 10:40 AM

What an abortion yesterday was. NASCAR seemed to be the only people who could not see that the attempt should never have been made. Cars totaled for no good reason. At least they can blame those empty seats on the weather. During the driver interviews on pit road you could see the sparse attendance. Out here on the East time zone we were treated with as much contempt by NASCAR as the teams were at the track. BF “screw ‘em, let them wait”

Kurt Smith
02/25/2008 10:54 AM

NASCAR looked like glittering jewels of ineptitude last night trying to run that race…as if they needed to perpetuate that image.

02/25/2008 11:50 AM

Another embarrassing debacle brought to you courtesy of NASCAR and Brian France! This race should have never been started and they should not have waited so late to decide to postpone it. Because of the inability of NASCAR to make a decision, you have several drivers that are already out of contention in this race due to the wreck.


Contact Tom Bowles

Recent articles from Tom Bowles:

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