NASCAR

Preview

as of Tuesday, March 04, 2014 2:33 PM.



NASCAR - Sprint Cup - Kobalt 400 Preview

Date: Sunday, March 9

Start Time: 3 p.m. ET

Site: Las Vegas Motor Speedway -- Las Vegas, Nev.

Track: 1.5-mile oval

Laps: 267

Miles: 400.5

Capacity: 142,000 (Grandstand Seating)

Total purse:

Payouts:

Year: 17th

On TV: FOX

Announcers:

On Radio: Performance Racing Network (PRN)/SIRIUS NASCAR Radio

Race record: Mark Martin, 1998 (146.554 mph)

Qualifying record: Kasey Kahne, 2012 (190.456 mph)

2013 Finish

Defending champion: Matt Kenseth

Runner up: Kasey Kahne

Pole winner: Brad Keselowski (owner points/qualifying rained out)

Top 10:

1. Matt Kenseth (Start: 18)

2. Kasey Kahne (4)

3. Brad Keselowski (1)

4. Kyle Busch (13)

5. Carl Edwards (5)

6. Jimmie Johnson (3)

7. Dale Earnhardt Jr (12)

8. Martin Truex Jr (11)

9. Kevin Harvick (9)

10. Paul Menard (17)

Average speed: 146.287 mph

Time of race: 2 hrs., 44 mins., 16 secs.

Margin of victory: 0.594 secs.

Caution flags: 5 for 25 laps

Lead changes: 22 among 8 drivers

Past winners

2013 Matt Kenseth, Toyota, 146.287 mph

2012 Tony Stewart, Chevrolet, 137.524 mph

2011 Carl Edwards, Ford, 135.508 mph

2010 Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 141.450 mph

2009 Kyle Busch, Toyota, 119.513 mph

2008 Carl Edwards, Ford, 127.729 mph

2007 Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 128.183 mph

2006 Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 133.358 mph

2005 Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 121.038 mph

2004 Matt Kenseth, Ford, 128.790 mph

2003 Matt Kenseth, Ford, 132.934 mph

2002 Sterling Marlin, Dodge, 136.747 mph

2001 Jeff Gordon, Chevrolet, 136.377 mph

2000 Jeff Burton, Ford, 119.982 mph

1999 Jeff Burton, Ford, 137.537 mph

1998 Mark Martin, Ford, 146.554 mph

Last race

Race: The Profit on CNBC 500 (March 2)

Site: Phoenix International Raceway -- Avondale, Ariz.

Miles: 312

Laps: 312

Finish line order: Kevin Harvick, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano, Jeff Gordon

Time of Race: 2 hrs., 51 mins., 23 secs.

Average speed: 109.229 mph

Margin of victory: 0.489 secs.

Caution flags: 8 for 38 laps

Lead changes: 14 among 8 drivers

Lap leaders: Keselowski-pole, Logano 1-37, Gilliland 38-39, Keselowski 40, Keselowski-pole, Logano 1-37, Gilliland 38-39, Keselowski 40, Logano 41-73, Harvick 74-110, Keselowski 111-112, Harvick 113-190, Logano 191, Harvick 192-236, Edwards 237, J. Gordon 238-241, Newman 242-247, Bowyer 248, Harvick 249-312.

Entry list

#1 Jamie McMurray (Joplin, MO) Chevrolet/Cessna

#2 Brad Keselowski (Rochester Hills, MI) Ford/Miller Lite

#3. Austin Dillon (Welcome, NC) Chevrolet/Cheerios

#4. Kevin Harvick (Bakersfield, CA) Chevrolet/Jimmy John's

#5 Kasey Kahne (Enumclaw, WA) Chevrolet/Farmers Insurance

#7 Michael Annett (Des Moines, IA) Chevrolet/Pilot/Flying J

#9 Marcos Ambrose (Launceston, Australia) Ford/DeWalt

#10 Danica Patrick (Roscoe, IL) Chevrolet/Aspen Dental

#11 Denny Hamlin (Chesterfield, VA) Toyota/FedEx Ground

#13 Casey Mears (Bakersfield, CA) Ford/GEICO

#14 Tony Stewart (Columbus, IN) Chevrolet/Bass Pro Shops/Mobil 1

#15 Clint Bowyer (Emporia, KS) Toyota/5-Hour Energy

#16 Greg Biffle (Vancouver, WA) Ford/Red Cross

#17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (Olive Branch, MS) Ford/Zest

#18 Kyle Busch (Las Vegas, NV) Toyota/M&M's

#20 * Matt Kenseth (Cambridge, WI) Toyota/Dollar General

#21 Trevor Bayne (Knoxville, TN) Ford/Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire

#22 Joey Logano (Middletown, CT) Ford/Shell/Pennzoil

#23 Alex Bowman (Tucson, AZ) Toyota/Dr. Pepper

#24 Jeff Gordon (Vallejo, CA) Chevrolet/Axalta

#26 Cole Whitt (Alpine, CA) Toyota/Swan Energy

#27 Paul Menard (Eau Claire, WI) Chevrolet/Menards/Quaker State

#30 Parker Kligerman (Westport, CT) Toyota/Lending Tree

#31 Ryan Newman (South Bend, IN) Chevrolet/Caterpillar

#32 Travis Kvapil (Janesville, WI) Ford/Ask More-Get More

#33 Timmy Hill (Port Tobacco, MD) Chevrolet/Circle-Sport.com

#34 David Ragan (Unadilla, GA) Ford/Taco Bell

#35 Blake Koch (West Palm Beach, FL) Ford/MDS Transport

#36 Reed Sorenson (Peachtree City, GA) Chevrolet/TBA

#38 David Gilliland (Riverside, CA) Ford/Love's Travel Stops

#40 Landon Cassill (Fairfax, IA) Chevrolet/Hillman Racing

#41 Kurt Busch (Las Vegas, NV) Chevrolet/Haas Automation

#42 Kyle Larson (Elk Grove, CA) Chevrolet/Target

#43 Aric Almirola (Tampa, FL) Ford/Farmland

#44 J.J. Yeley (Phoenix, AZ) Chevrolet/Phoenix Warehouse

#47 A.J. Allmendinger (Los Gatos, CA) Chevrolet/Kingsford Charcoal

#48 Jimmie Johnson (El Cajon, CA) Chevrolet/Kobalt Tools

#51 Justin Allgaier (Riverton, IL) Chevrolet/Brandt Professional

#55 Brian Vickers (Thomasville, NC) Toyota/Aaron's Dream Machine

#66 Jeff Burton (South Boston, VA) Toyota/Let's Go Places

#77 Dave Blaney (Hartford, OH) Ford/TBA

#78 Martin Truex Jr. (Mayetta, NJ) Chevrolet/Furniture Row

#83 Ryan Truex (Mayetta, NJ) Toyota/Borla Exhaust

#87 Joe Nemechek (Lakeland, FL) Toyota/TBA

#88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Kannapolis, NC) Chevrolet/Mountain Dew Kickstart

#95 Michael McDowell (Glendale, AZ) Ford/WRL General Contractors

#98 Josh Wise (Riverside, CA) Chevrolet/Ambient Edge/HVAC

#99 Carl Edwards (Columbia, MO) Ford/Aflac

Leading contenders

Name 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013
Matt Kenseth 8 2 4 20 43 5 11 22 Won
Kasey Kahne 38 4 35 6 11 9 14 19 2
Brad Keselowski --- --- --- --- 38 26 26 32 5
Kyle Busch 2 3 9 11 Won 15 38 23 4
Carl Edwards 14 26 6 Won 17 12 Won 5 5
Jimmie Johnson Won Won Won 29 24 Won 16 2 6
Dale Earnhardt Jr 42 27 11 2 10 16 8 10 9
Martin Truex Jr --- 20 12 15 32 20 6 17 8
Kevin Harvick 5 11 27 4 12 2 17 11 9
Paul Menard --- --- 32 22 35 17 12 7 10
Tony Stewart 10 21 7 43 26 7 2 Won 11
Joey Logano --- --- --- --- 13 6 23 16 12
Jamie McMurray 15 23 10 25 9 34 27 8 13
Denny Hamlin --- 10 3 9 22 19 7 20 15
Greg Biffle 6 8 16 3 7 10 28 3 17
Kurt Busch 3 16 26 38 23 35 9 35 20
Jeff Gordon 4 5 2 35 6 3 36 12 25
Clint Bowyer --- 15 36 28 2 8 15 6 27
Ryan Newman 9 43 8 14 25 18 5 4 38

Notes

The Kobalt 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway is the third race on the 2014 Sprint Cup Series schedule.

Construction of this racetrack, which is known today as Las Vegas Motor Speedway, began in 1995. Speedway Motorsports Inc. acquired the property in 1998.

This track, which is 1.5 miles in length, has 20 degrees of banking in all four of its turns as well as nine degrees of banking on the frontstretch and backstretch. In 2006, it was reconfigured to include progressive banking.

The first NASCAR race held at LVMS was a K&N Pro Series West event won by Ken Schrader on Nov. 2, 1996. Mark Martin won the inaugural Sprint Cup race there on March 1, 1998. The Cup Series has competed at this track once each year since then.

There have been 16 Sprint Cup races held at Las Vegas. Four driver have competed in all of them: Jeff Burton, Jeff Gordon, Bobby Labonte and Mark Martin. Labonte and Martin are not competing in this year's event. Burton is on the entry list for Las Vegas, driving the No. 66 Toyota for Michael Waltrip Racing. He is running a partial schedule for MWR this season.

Jimmie Johnson holds the record for most victories at Las Vegas with four. Johnson won three consecutive races there from 2005-07. His other victory at this track came in 2010.

Matt Kenseth, Tony Stewart, Gordon and Martin have the most top-five finishes at Las Vegas with six each. Martin's 10 top-10 finishes is the best among all drivers who have competed there.

Kasey Kahne has the most poles at Las Vegas with three. Kahne has yet to win a Sprint Cup event there.

One year ago at Las Vegas, Kenseth gambled on tires late in the race and then held off Kahne in the closing laps to score his 25th career Sprint Cup victory but his first with Joe Gibbs Racing. It came in just his third start as driver of the No. 20 Toyota for JGR. He also celebrated his 41st birthday on the day of his Las Vegas win.

Kenseth has three Sprint Cup victories at this track. He won back-to-back races there from 2003-04.

The closest margin of victory for a Cup race at Las Vegas occurred in 2006 when Johnson nipped Kenseth to the finish line by just 0.045 seconds.

Three drivers who are entered in this weekend's race made their first career Cup starts at Las Vegas: Kyle Busch (2004), Aric Almirola (2007) and Timmy Hill (2012).

Kahne is the only driver who claimed his first career pole in the series at Las Vegas (2004).

No active driver has scored his or her first Cup win at Las Vegas.

The next race is the March 16 Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway. Kahne won last year's spring event there.



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