Kahne Holds off Hamlin and Wins at New Hampshire

Kahne celebrates after winning 
Photo- Getty Images

By Jason Schultz


A strategy filled afternoon in New Hampshire put Kasey Kahne in victory lane at the end of the race. 


Kahne won his second race of the season and put himself in the first wild card position. Kahne said to make the Chase he “need(s) to stay after it.” This win was definitely a momentum builder for Kahne and will help him come Chase time. 


The rain threatened but never arrived at the track. 


Pole-sitter Kyle Busch led all the laps until the first round of green-flag pit stops began on lap 60. Busch had a slow stop and then received a pit road speeding penalty, putting him in the 22nd position after serving the penalty. 


Busch’s Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Denny Hamlin then assumed the lead after the cycle of pit stops. 


The first caution of the day came out on lap 89 when debris was spotted on the track. Jeff Gordon did not pit and took over as race leader followed by Hamlin, Johnson, Kahne and Earnhardt Jr. Hamlin would soon take the lead from Gordon. 


Hendrick dominance was present in the race and on lap 98, all four Hendrick drivers were in the top-five. 


At the halfway point of the race, Hamlin led followed by Johnson, Kahne, Earnhardt Jr and Keselowski. 


On lap 154 the second round of green-flag pit stops began. Hamlin was still the leader following the stops. 


The second yellow-flag came out on lap 191 when more debris was spotted on the track. On the restart, Kyle Busch who stayed out was the leader. Hamlin would soon pass Busch and inherit the lead. 


On lap 235 the caution came out for David Reutimann who blew his engine and left liquid on the track. Just before the caution came out, Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Busch pit, putting them both a lap down. However, Johnson received the lucky dog, getting him back on the lead lap. Busch would take the wave around to get back on the lead lap. 


Kasey Kahne made a strategic move and took two tires and the lead for the restart. Hamlin’s team decided on four tires, causing him to start deep in the field on the restart. 


On lap 272, Hamlin continued his quest to the front and passed Earnhardt Jr for third. Hamlin eventually passed Bowyer for second and started to charge towards Kahne. Hamlin came up short in reaching Kahne up to the final laps and the No. 5 car crossed the line first to pick up his second victory of the season. 


With the win, Kahne improves his Chase chances that much more. Kahne said in victory lane that “Hamlin was obviously the best car” and he was lucky to beat Hamlin in the closing laps. 


Kahne moved up to twelfth in points and now holds the first wild car position, with Kyle Busch holding the second wild card position. If Carl Edwards wins a race, he will be in position for a wild card spot. 


Kahne showed today that he is serious about contending for the championship by winning a race and almost setting a lock on a wild card position for him. 


In two weeks, the Sprint Cup Series heads to Indianapolis to kick-off ESPN’s coverage of the races. Before the Indianapolis race arrives, we should know the fate of A.J Allmendinger. 


The championship Chase will heat up after this off-week, as the start of the Chase for the Sprint Cup will begin after the next seven races.

Results & Point Standings via Nascar.com

SPONSOR
STATUS
1
2
5
Chevrolet
HendrickCars.com
47/4
301
Running
2
3
11
Toyota
FedEx Office
44/2
301
Running
3
5
15
Toyota
5-hour Energy
42/1
301
Running
4
9
88
Chevrolet
National Guard ‘An American Salute’ / Diet Mountain Dew
40/0
301
Running
5
22
2
Dodge
Miller Lite
40/1
301
Running
6
8
24
Chevrolet
Pepsi Max
39/1
301
Running
7
7
48
Chevrolet
Lowe’s
38/1
301
Running
8
12
29
Chevrolet
Budweiser Folds of Honor
36/0
301
Running
9
11
16
Ford
3M
35/0
301
Running
10
6
39
Chevrolet
Aspen Dental
34/0
301
Running
11
4
56
Toyota
NAPA Batteries
33/0
301
Running
12
10
14
Chevrolet
Mobil 1
32/0
301
Running
13
27
17
Ford
NESN
31/0
301
Running
14
16
20
Toyota
Dollar General
30/0
301
Running
15
15
55
Toyota
MyClassicGara
ge.com / Aaron’s
29/0
301
Running
16
1
18
Toyota
Interstate Batteries
29/1
301
Running
17
13
27
Chevrolet
Quaker State / Menards
27/0
301
Running
18
21
99
Ford
Fastenal / Lenox
26/0
301
Running
19
20
9
Ford
DEWALT
25/0
301
Running
20
28
1
Chevrolet
Bass Pro Shops / NRA Museum
24/0
300
Running
21
25
31
Chevrolet
Wheaties
23/0
300
Running
22
24
22
Dodge
Shell / Pennzoil-AAA
0
300
Running
23
18
47
Toyota
Kingsford
21/0
300
Running
24
14
51
Chevrolet
Phoenix Construction Services
21/1
299
Running
25
31
42
Chevrolet
Target
19/0
299
Running
26
17
78
Chevrolet
Furniture Row / Farm American
18/0
298
Running
27
39
38
Ford
Glory Foods
17/0
298
Running
28
23
43
Ford
U.S. Air Force
16/0
298
Running
29
29
83
Toyota
Burger King / Dr Pepper
15/0
297
Running
30
30
93
Toyota
Burger King / Dr Pepper
14/0
297
Running
31
37
32
Ford
Federated Auto Parts
13/0
294
Running
32
43
33
Chevrolet
Little Joes A
utos.com
12/0
293
Running
33
26
10
Chevrolet
CarportEmpire
.com / TMone.com Call Centers in America
11/0
229
Engine
34
19
34
Ford
MHP / 8 Hour Alert
10/0
139
Engine
35
40
30
Toyota
Stock Car Steel and Aluminum
9/0
101
Vibration
36
33
13
Ford
GEICO
8/0
91
Vibration
37
32
26
Ford
MDS Transport
7/0
82
Brakes
38
34
87
Toyota
AM / FM Energy Wood & Pellet Stoves
0
71
Brakes
39
35
36
Chevrolet
Golden Corral
5/0
68
Brakes
40
36
98
Ford
Phil Parsons Racing
4/0
63
Vibration
41
41
23
Chevrolet
North Texas Pipe
3/0
32
Vibration
42
42
179
Kelly Bires
Ford
Team Kyle / Bestway Disposal
2/0
19
Brakes
43
38
249
Toyota
Robinson-Blak
1/0
4
Engine

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