Auto racing: Kenseth holds off clean-racing Kahne to win at Bristol
Kasey Kahne was fed up with all of Joe Gibbs Racing by the time contact with Matt Kenseth ended his race at Watkins Glen earlier this month.
It was the fourth time a JGR driver had wrecked him, and he took to Twitter to voice his displeasure, posting: “Headed to Joe Gibbs Racing to talk to whoever will come out front.”
But when he had his chance Saturday night to right all of those wrongs, Kahne passed.
A clean racer to his core, he trailed Kenseth for a dozen laps around Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, trying every which way possible to pass him without wrecking him and failing miserably. The result was Kenseth grabbing his Sprint Cup Series leading fifth win of the season, while Kahne settled for a disappointing second.
“I don’t know,” sighed Kahne. “I just … I think at the end of the day, I just don’t wreck people.”
It’s the third time this season Kahne has finished second behind Kenseth, who on Saturday night clinched at least a wild card berth in the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship.
Kahne, meanwhile, is still hoping just to make it into the Chase. With two wins on the year he’s in pretty good shape, but he’s only eighth in the standings with two races remaining to set the 12 driver field. After Kahne passed Juan Pablo Montoya for second he set his sights on Kenseth and tried numerous times over the final dozen laps to make the pass, but never could make it stick. He went for the bump and run on the last lap and missed, and has to settle for second.
Montoya, who learned two weeks ago he won’t be brought back to Chip Ganassi Racing next season, was third. Although he could use a win, especially on an oval to prove he belongs in NASCAR, he said he was pleased with the result especially since he came back from an early speeding penalty.
Brian Vickers was fourth, followed by Joey Logano, Paul Menard and Jeff Gordon.
Marcos Ambrose was eighth and Greg Biffle and Dale Earnhardt Jr. rounded out the top 10.
Four in a row for Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton surprised even himself after beating both Red Bull cars to secure his fourth consecutive pole position in a rain-soaked qualifying session at the Belgian Grand Prix in Spa, Belgium.
The Mercedes driver is the first Briton since Damon Hill in 1995 to get four straight poles and has set himself up perfectly to keep the pressure on championship leader Sebastian Vettel, who starts today’s race from second ahead of teammate Mark Webber.
Franchitti wins IRL pole
Dario Franchitti won the pole for today’s IndyCar race at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway.
Franchitti turned a lap in 1 minute, 17.5271 seconds around the 2.385-mile road course in Northern California wine country, edging Target Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Scott Dixon second at 1:17.7196.
© Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.