Kahnes Field Of Dreams

NEWTON, Iowa - Where do winners of the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race celebrate?

In Iowa of course.

Iowa Speedway to be exact.

For the second year in a row, the all-star champion jetted up to Rusty Wallace's 7/16-mile Iowa Speedway to take part in the NASCAR Camping World East-West match-up.

The 200-lap race brings both of NASCAR's developmental series' together at the three-year-old track just outside Des Moines.

Kevin Harvick won the all-star race in 2007 and participated in the Iowa event. This year it was Kasey Kahne's turn to win in Charlotte and turn in the Iowa double.

"I got about 2-1/2 hours of sleep after everything was over in Charlotte, got on a plane and came up here," Kahne said in the Iowa garage area Sunday morning. "It's a neat deal because this is a beautiful track and I've been looking forward to racing here against some of the good, young drivers."

Kahne didn't disappoint the big crowd that showed up on a clear and cool Midwestern afternoon.

After qualifying fourth, Kahne was in the mix all day long and had his familiar red Budweiser Dodge in front for several laps.

Eventually he was shuffled back in some late race pit road strategy, but was still charging to the front as the laps wound down.

Kahne wound up finishing third to winner Brian Ickler, a CWS West driver from San Diego, and runnerup East Series driver Marc Davis.

"That was different,” Kahne said. “Maybe we took tires too early, but we passed a lot of cars today. We did all we could, but we had a good third-place car. Early in the race, the car worked pretty good everywhere we ran, but later it pushed real bad and the key was to find the best line to get off the corners."

“This track is real racy. To me, it drives a lot like Richmond and it’s very fan-friendly for the good competition. This has longer straights than Richmond and is faster, but the turns, to me at least, are very similar.”

Kahne departed, with Gillett Evernham Motorsports co-owner Ray Evernham in tow, smiling and no doubt exhausted from the long and successful weekend.

Perhaps it's a new trend and with the luck Harvick and Kahne have had with the Charlotte-Iowa doubleheader, the 2009 edition of the U.S. Cellular 200 will probably have more than a few Sprint Cup regulars on the entry list.

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