April 14, 2012 in Sports

Roush Fenway drivers succeed at Texas Motor Speedway

 

Matt Kenseth has led more laps than anybody in Texas. Current points leader Greg Biffle has seven consecutive top-10 finishes there. Carl Edwards is the only three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup winner at the 1 1/2-mile, high-banked track.

Fort Worth certainly brings out the best in the Roush Fenway drivers.

“I don’t really know why, but it has been a pretty good track for us in the past,” said Kenseth, who has two wins and 13 top-10 finishes in 19 starts. “Whenever you come back to a track you’ve had success at, then I think you probably always look forward to coming back to it maybe a little bit more.”

Owner Jack Roush was winning races at Texas Motor Speedway even before his current trio of drivers. He has been to Victory Lane and gathered quite a collection of winning cowboy hats by taking eight of 22 races.

Jeff Burton won the inaugural Texas race in 1997 driving for Roush, and Mark Martin won the following year when there was still only one Cup race a year at the track.

“You feel like you need to capitalize when you come to this track,” Kenseth said. “You feel like yourself or one of your team cars needs to have a shot to win, and you should all be running up toward the front.”

That is where the Roush drivers hope and expect to be in tonight’s race.

Martin Truex Jr. is on the pole for the race after a qualifying lap of 190.369 mph Friday in his Michael Waltrip-owned Toyota. It’s his seventh career pole and second at Texas, where he finished third five years ago.

Qualifying next were the Fords driven by Kenseth and Biffle. Edwards qualified 20th.

Stenhouse wins for Roush in Nationwide

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. regained the lead with 23 laps to go when he charged past Austin Dillon, then held on after Friday night’s final restart to give Roush Fenway its fourth consecutive NASCAR Nationwide victory at Texas.

After the restart with six laps left, Stenhouse pushed out in front before Denny Hamlin came from behind to get side-by-side at the start-finish line. Stenhouse was ahead by only .001 seconds after that first lap, before pulling away for his second victory this season.

Violence flares after F  1 race gets go-ahead

Protesters hurled firebombs and riot police fired tear gas in Bahrain, hours after Formula One chief Bernie Ecclestone declared the Gulf nation safe to host a Grand Prix next week.

All 12 teams told Ecclestone they were happy to travel to the tiny kingdom despite the political unrest. He said no extra safety precautions were being put in place.

“There’s nothing happening (in Bahrain),” Ecclestone said in Shanghai before the Chinese Grand Prix. “I know people that live there and it’s all very quiet and peaceful.”

But clashes broke out after the funeral of activist Ahmed Ismail, whom authorities say was killed late last month by gunfire during a protest, although it is still unclear who fired the shots.

Organizers canceled last year’s Grand Prix after the outbreak of violence, which has led to at least 50 deaths.


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