Kenseth Close Again

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JOLIET, Ill. - Another year and another bittersweet weekend at Chicagoland Speedway for Matt Kenseth.

A pair of runnerup finishes for Kenseth in Saturday's Busch Series race as well as Sunday's NEXTEL Cup Series USG Sheetrock 400 was impressive.

But it continued Kenseth's recent run of knocking on victory lane's door in the Windy City but not quite getting in.

Kenseth was however pleased with the weekend, particularly Sunday's second place finish behind Tony Stewart in the USG 400.

"I thought we had most of the day a fourth to eighth-place car, and made some really good adjustments, got the car a lot better where we could run with them," Kenseth said. "It just seemed like Jimmie Johnson and Tony Stewart were in front of us and we couldn't quite run with them guys, but other than that we seemed to be able to break even with most of them, depending on what track position we had."

Johnson suffered a cut tire that ended his day in the wall, but Kenseth couldn't run down Stewart in the closing laps when a flurry of late race cautions set up several restarts.

"It feels good to come home second," he said. "I had that one shot at him and I just couldn't quite finish the pass. If I could've finished that pass on the restart, I would've liked to have been in front of him and tried to hold him off, I don't know if I could have or not, but I would have liked to have that chance."

The second place run gave Kenseth a nice points day, but with victories now counting in the seeding of the "Chase" this year, a trip to victory lane would have been nice.

"It's a different day with the way the point system works," Kenseth said. "It's great to finish and say I got a lot of points, but it would have been nice to have that win and that extra 10 [points awarded race winners when the Chase starts] going into the Chase because we're pretty comfortable in the top 12, so we really need to be winning races if we could.

"We work as hard as we can every week to try to win, and you can only go as fast as you can get your race car to go. So, I do feel like our consistency is good. I think it's always been fairly good. We've had a really good group of guys."





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