Jeff Gordon held off Kevin Harvick over the final laps and went on to win the 5-Hour Energy 400 Sprint
Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway on Saturday night.
The victory was the first of the year for the four-time champion and his third at Kansas Speedway.
The win was his first since Martinsville last fall and it earned him a place in the record book as the first winner of a
night race at the track.
Harvick finished second after leading the most laps in the race.
Kasey Kahne, Gordon's teammate at Hendrick Motorsports, finished third while Joey Logano was fourth. Fifth was a third
Hendrick driver, Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Rounding out the top 10 were Carl Edwards, Danica Patrick, Aric Almirola, Jimmie Johnson and Matt Kenseth.
Patrick had by far her most impressive effort on a non-restrictor plate track. She started ninth, hung tough for the first half of the
race and then began moving forward. On Lap 162, she blew past both Tony Stewart and Earnhardt and moved to third place.
A slow pit stop during a caution that occurred on Lap 177 knocked her back to seventh but again, she hung tough to earn her
best NASCAR Sprint Cup finish.
Harvick broke clean from his pole position on the start and began to move out. By Lap 15 of the 267-lap event, he had a two-
plus second lead. Behind him, the field was well spread out. By Lap 33, the lead was three seconds.
He would lead 89 laps in dominating fashion during the first half of the race.
However, the night went bad for Harvick when a spin by Marcos Ambrose on Lap 110 produced a caution. Harvick had pitted as
the leader six laps earlier while most of the rest of the field did not. That put him a lap off the pace. He did get the free
pass but when the race went green, was outside of the top 15.
Harvick was not done, however. He slowly worked his way back forward and on a restart on Lap 195, climbed to third place. On
a restart on Lap 207, he restarted second, below leader Joey Logano, and moved back to the lead between Turns 3 and 4.
He lost the lead to Gordon during green flag pit stops 40 laps from the end and could never get back to the lead.
The first night race at Kansas dashed some hopes for two "favorite sons."
Hopes for a victory by a hometown hero took a series shot on Lap 47 when Kansas native Clint Bowyer of Michael Waltrip Racing
snapped around on the backstretch. He kept his Toyota off the wall and clean. He dropped a lap off the pace, however.
Hopes for a victory on what he considers his home track went up in smoke for Springfield, Mo.'s Jamie McMurray
after his car blew a tire, broke an oil line and burst into flames early in the race.
The start of the race was pushed back not by rain, but by lightning. It was not until after the cars had moved out onto the
track for the parade laps that rain began to fall. But that was very light, quickly evaporated on the warm asphalt and the
5-Hour Energy 400 finishing order
|5||22||Dale Earnhardt, Jr.||Chevrolet||267||Running|
|21||26||Martin Truex, Jr.||Chevrolet||266||Running|
|22||20||Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.||Ford||265||Running|