Racingone Rewind: Richmond
September 7, 2008 | 10:57 P.M. EST
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Johnson held off Tony Stewart in a side-by-side duel in the closing laps to score his second straight series win and back-to-back victories in the fall Richmond race. Photos
Keys to Victory Lane
Great pit work helped Johnson gain spots and his charge to the front was vintage JJ as he cruised to his fourth win of the season. Complete Results
Zero to Hero
David Reutimann started 27th and led a career-high 104 laps to score a series-best ninth place finish.
Rookie of the Race
Michael McDowell continued Michael Waltrip Racing's big day by topping the freshman class with a 20th-place finish.
Clint Bowyer's 12th-place finish was good enough to secure the final Chase transfer spot. Travis Kvapil had a good run for Yates Racing by scoring a 17th-place finish with his teammate David Gilliland right behind in the 18th spot.
Race to the Chase
Bowyer edged Kasey Kahne and David Ragan for the final spot while Kyle Busch, Carl Edwards and Jimmie Johnson locked up the top three seeds.
Chevy Rock & Roll 400 Loop Data Leaders
• Average Running Position: Dale Earnhardt Jr. - 3.3
• Fastest Early In a Run: Dale Earnhardt Jr. - 117.069 mph
• Fastest Late In a Run: Dale Earnhardt Jr. - 113.778 mph
• Fastest Laps Run: Dale Earnhardt Jr. - 53
• Fastest on Restarts: Dale Earnhardt Jr. - 117.144 mph
• Most Passes During Green Flag Conditions: David Gilliland - 138
• Laps In Top 15: Tony Stewart - 396
• Quality Passes: Casey Mears - 67
• Speed in Traffic: Tony Stewart - 115.455 mph
• Johnson captured his 37th career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win in his 245th career start. Detailed Active Driver Wins
• Johnson won the 172nd race for car owner Rick Hendrick. Detailed Active Car Owner Wins
• Johnson became the 15th driver to win at Richmond from the third position. He was the 257th driver overall to win a race from that position. Starting Position Facts
• Johnson won the 34th race for Chevrolet at Richmond. All-Time Manufacturer Wins
• Tony Stewart (second) posted his 14th top-10 finish in 20 races at Richmond International Raceway. It is his 13th top-10 finish in 2008.
• Denny Hamlin (third) posted his fourth top-10 finish in six races at Richmond International Raceway.
• Dale Earnhardt Jr. (fourth) posted his eighth top five at Richmond and first top 10 since his win in the spring 2006 race.
• Mark Martin (fifth) has finished in the top 10 in his last three Cup starts and in 18 starts this season, has now finished in the top 10 in half of them.
• Jeff Burton (sixth) posted his first top 10 at Richmond since the fall 2006 race.
• Kevin Harvick (seventh) has finished in the top 10 in his last eight starts at Richmond.
• Jeff Gordon (eighth) posted his 20th top-10 at Richmond International Raceway.
• David Reutimann posted a ninth-place finish for the second week in a row.
• Kurt Busch (10th) posted his first top 10 in the past four races and sixth of the season.
• The 400-lap race saw 22 lead changes among 10 drivers and an average speed of 92.680 mph. Lap Summary
• Fourteen caution flags were thrown for 71 laps.
• The Chevy Rock & Roll 400 lasted 3 hours, 14 minutes, 03 seconds.
• Jimmie Johnson - three-peat anyone?
• Admit it, you were scratching your head when MWR had three drivers in the top 10 for awhile, weren't you?
• That said, kudos to David Reutimann for a career run.
• How did Kasey Kahne go from being so good to so mediocre in four months time?
• Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Kyle Busch got the crowd's attention with their little tangle Sunday. That was the only time Busch generated any excitement.
• They could race shopping carts at Richmond and it would be a good race.
• Did we really race the Cup Series and the Nationwide Series on the same day twice this year because of weather?
• After his 42nd-place finish will GEM drop its lawsuit against Robby Gordon?
• The command and pre-race words from the NYFD fireman were about as inspiring as we've had all year.
• "No, but it certainly is ironic." - Dale Earnhardt Jr. on his scrum with Kyle Busch
• "It's very disappointing. I felt like the first 100 laps or so we had a top-five car and seemed to be pretty quick." - David Ragan
• "Anything can happen. I think it's going to be defined by your bad days." - Carl Edwards sizing up the Chase
• "That's how you want to win a race—going against the best in the business and Tony is certainly one of those guys." - Jimmie Johnson
• "I mean, that's the moral of the story. We could sit here for hours and try to dissect exactly why we didn't win the race." - Tony Stewart
On a scale of one to 10 umbrellas, which we could thankfully throw away after Tropical Storm Hanna's departure from Richmond, we'll give Sunday's Chevy Rock & Roll 400 a seven. In honesty, the move from a Saturday night race to Sunday afternoon seemed to drain a little of the excitement out of the race but there was still some nice Chase drama between Bowyer, Kahne and Ragan to spice things up. And the closing lap battle between Johnson and Stewart was Richmond racing at its finest. Too bad we can't come back to this track for an acutal Chase race. But now we begin the 10-race championship stretch with a return to New England and Sunday's Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Hopefully it will be a dry weekend.