Goody’s Cool Orange 500 News and Notes

Goody’s Cool Orange 500 News and Notes

NASCAR Betting - Goody’s Cool Orange 500
By BetUS Staff

Youngster Kyle Busch put his name forever in trivia lore by claiming the win at Bristol – the first race ever run in NASCAR’s Car of Tomorrow (“COT”) program. The COT sleds, which implement enhanced safety features, contain infinitely adjustable front and rear aerodynamic structures (front splitter and rear-fin) and provide purported cost-efficiency, will run fifteen more races this season, twenty-six races in 2008, and then every race of the 2009 season.

Kasey Kayne and Tony Stewart’s Cars of Tomorrow were clearly the fastest cars in the first half of the race but unfortunate circumstances forced each out of the race hundreds of laps before it was complete. Kasey Kayne’s car spun out of the race with more than 200 laps to go and, moments later, Stewart’s car lost its power.

The fifteenth caution flag of the race required the drivers to line up for a green-white checkered finish pitting Busch against wily veteran teammate, Jeff Gordon, who would start immediately behind Busch on the re-start. Busch pulled away and ultimately battled and defeated Jeff Burton to claim the checkered flag. In a warm show of sportsmanship, Burton discussed that he had the opportunity to spin out Busch to claim the win but that Busch’s decision not to do the same thing to Burton two weeks ago in Las Vegas made the difference. Burton did not press and Busch won.

Gordon finished third followed by: Kevin Harvick, Greg Biffle, Jeff Green, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Clint Bowyer.

Chevrolet’s COT program clearly outpaced its competitors on Sunday. Eight of the top-ten finishers were Chevrolet cars and only Ford cracked the top-ten (Biffle came 5th and Jamie McMurray 9th).

Mark Martin was the Nextel Cup points leader entering the weekend but, by deciding not to race in Bristol, he surrendered the top spot to Gordon. Behind Gordon in the standings now are: Jeff Burton, Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth and Kevin Harvick. Martin now finds himself in seventh place, behind Kyle Busch.

The Cup heads East to Martinsville, Virginia for this weekend’s Goody’s Cool Orange 500. The Martinsville track was built in 1947 and is a one-mile true oval with 12-degree banking in the turns.

Like Bristol’s short-track, both races at Martinsville will feature the Car of Tomorrow cars. As will become clear in a moment, Chevy’s dominance of this program thus far bodes well for the drivers who have historically thrived at this Virginia track.

Tony Stewart (Chevy) claimed the checkered rag at last year’s spring race in Martinsville at the DirectTV 500. After Stewart, the rest of the top-ten, in finishing order, from last year’s spring race were: Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt, Jr, Kyle Busch, Elliott Sadler, Kevin Harvick, Brian Vickers, Jamie McMurry and Scott Riggs.

Jimmie Johnson (Chevy) won last year’s fall race at Martinsville (Subway 500), beating out Denny Hamlin, Terry Labonte, Tony Stewart, Jeff Gordon, Casey Mears and Kasey Kahne.

Gordon (Chevy), this year’s current Cup leader, would be a good bet this weekend. He has a history of finishing very well at this track, including sweeps of both Martinsville races in a single season, having done so twice (in 2003 and 2005).

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COT- Take Two : Analyzing The Goody's Cool Orange 500        
Monday, 26 March 2007

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla.  – Though the mystery is over, the story has just begun. The Car of Tomorrow has run a race and the future is now the present.

Now, the “COT” takes the second step in its revolutionary journey, this time at the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series’ oldest track. Martinsville Speedway has hosted races since 1949, when the path was dirt and few knew what NASCAR’s future held.

Selected Driver Highlights
Note: All driver stats are at Martinsville. NASCAR’s scoring loops began collecting data for statistical purposes in 2005. That is why the Loop Data statistics in this release cover the last four races at Martinsville and include only active drivers.

Jeff Burton (No. 31 Cingular Wireless Chevrolet)
• One win, nine top fives, 12 top 10s
• Average finish of 15.4
• 574 laps led
• Third-Fastest in Turn 2

Dale Earnhardt Jr. (No. 8 Budweiser Chevrolet)
• Six top fives
• Average finish of 14.929
• 451 laps led
• Eighth-best Average Running Position of 14.245
• Driver Rating of 87.3, ninth best
• 214 Green Flag Passes, most of any driver
• 1,254 Laps in the Top 15, sixth-most
• 108 Quality Passes, most of any driver
• Fourth-Fastest on the Backstretch

Jeff Gordon (No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet)
• Seven wins, 16 top fives, 12 top 10s; five poles
• Average finish of 7.536
• 2,206 laps led, most of active drivers
• Second-best Average Running Position of 8.315
• Driver Rating of 122.9, second-best
• Second-Fastest on Frontstretch, Backstretch and Turns 3
• 181 Fastest Laps Run, third-most
• Second-Fastest Green Flag Speed
• 1,672 Laps in the Top 15, second most
• 86 Quality Passes, fourth-most
• Fourth-Fastest Speed in Traffic

Denny Hamlin (No. 11 FedEx Chevrolet)
• One top five, two top 10s in three starts
• Average finish of 15.667; 28 laps led
• Driver Rating of 90.0, eight-best
• Second-Fastest in Turn 2; third-fastest in Turn 4
• Fourth-Fastest Speed in Traffic

Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet)
• Two wins, six top fives, nine top 10s
• Average finish at Martinsville of 7.20
• 611 laps led
• Average Running Position of 8.439, third-best
• Driver Rating of 116.0, third-best
• Fastest on Turn 1
• Third-Fastest on the Frontstretch, Backstretch, Turn 3; fourth-fastest on Turn 4
• 193 Fastest Laps Run, second-most
• Third-Fastest Green Flag Speed
• 1,612 Laps in the Top 15, third-most
• 93 Quality Passes, third-most
• Second-Fastest Speed in Traffic

Kasey Kahne (No. 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge)
• One top fives, two top 10s; one pole
• Average finish of 15.833
• Fastest on Turn 2
• Second-Fastest on Turn 4
• 80 Fastest Laps Run, fifth-most

Jamie McMurray (No. 26 Crown Royal/IRWIN Industrial Tools Ford)
• One top fives, five top 10s
• Average finish of 14.5
• 11 positions improved in the last 10 percent of laps at Martinsville – best of the “Closers”

Ryan Newman (No. 12 Alltel Dodge)
• Four top fives and five top 10s; two poles
• Average finish of 15.2
• 127 Green Flag Passes, eighth most
• 1,134 Laps in the Top 15, seventh-most

Ricky Rudd (No. 88 Snickers Ford)
• Three wins, 13 top fives, 20 top 10s; four poles
• Average finish of 14.887
• 1,571 laps led
• Average Running Position of 10.521, fourth-best
• Driver Rating of 97.2, fourth-best
• Fourth-Fastest Green Flag Speed

Tony Stewart (No. 20 Home Depot Chevrolet)
• Two wins, six top fives and nine top 10s; three pole
• Average finish of 1612.563
• 1,182 laps led
• Average Running Position of 4.168, best of any driver
• Driver Rating of 129.4, best of any driver
• Fastest on the Frontstretch, Backstretch and Turn 4
• 252 Fastest Laps Run, most of any driver
• Fastest Green Flag Speed
• 1,901 Laps in the Top 15
• Fastest Speed in Traffic

Driver Rating at Martinsville
Tony Stewart        129.4
Jeff Gordon           122.9
Jimmie Johnson    116.0
Ricky Rudd            97.2
Kurt Busch            94.1
Jeremy Mayfield     90.4
Kyle Busch            90.1
Denny Hamlin         90.0
Dale Earnhardt Jr.   87.3
Ryan Newman        86.8
Note: Driver Rating compiled from 2005 and 2006 races (4 total) at Martinsville.

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Top 10 drivers - and beyond 2007-03-26


DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (March 26, 2007) -- Below is a look at the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Top 10 along with some other notable drivers, going into the Goody's Cool Orange 500 at Martinsville Speedway on April 1.

1 -- Jeff Gordon (No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet)

The File:
* 35-years-old from Vallejo, Calif., 75 career wins
* Last held the points lead after winning the Daytona 500 in 2005; last points lead into a season: Sept. 26, 2004 (after Dover)
* Three top fives, four top 10s; two poles
* Average finish of 5.8 this season
* Led in four of five races for 149 laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* Seven wins, 16 top fives, 22 top 10s; five poles
* 7.536 average finish
* Finished second and fifth, respectively, last season
* Led in 20 of his 28 Martinsville races for a total of 2,206 laps

Loop Data Highlight:
* 579 Green Flag Passes, most of any driver

***

2 -- Jeff Burton (No. 31 Cingular Wireless Chevrolet)

The File:
* 39-years-old from South Boston, Va., 18 career wins
* Four top fives
* Average finish of 5.6 this season
* Led in three of five races for 24 laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* One win, nine top fives, 12 top 10s
* 15.4 average finish
* Finished 33rd and 42nd, respectively, last season
* Led in six of his 25 Martinsville races for a total of 574 laps

Loop Data Highlight:
* Average Running Position of 8.870, best of any driver; 429 Quality Passes (passes of cars in the top 15 under green flag conditions), most of any driver

***

3 -- Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet)

The File:
* 31-years-old from El Cajon, Calif., 25 career wins
* Two wins, three top fives this season
* Average finish of 12.0
* Led in three of five races for 255 laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* Two wins, six top fives, nine top 10s
* 7.2 average finish
* Finished third and first, respectively, last season
* Led in four of his 10 Martinsville races for a total of 611 laps

Loop Data Highlight:
* Driver Rating of 108.3, second-best

***

4 -- Matt Kenseth (No. 17 DEWALT Ford)

The File:
* 35-years-old from Cambridge, Wis., 15 career wins
* One win, three top fives
* Average finish of 9.2
* Led in four of five races for 151 laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* One top five, three top 10s
* 16.786 average finish
* Finished 24th and 11th, respectively, last season
* Led in five of his 14 Martinsville races for a total of 59 laps

Loop Data Highlight:
* Average Running Position of 10.194, fourth-best; 1,239 Laps in the Top 15, third-most

***

5 -- Kevin Harvick (No. 29 Shell/Pennzoil Chevrolet)

The File:
* 31-years-old from Bakersfield, Calif., 11 career victories
* One win, two top fives
* Average finish of 14.8 this season
* Led in four of five races for 17 laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* Four top 10s
* 18.182 average finish
* Finished seventh and ninth, respectively, last season
* Led in four of his 11 Martinsville races for a total of 147 laps

Loop Data Highlight:
* 53 Fastest Laps Run, tied for seventh-most

***

6 -- Kyle Busch (No. 5 Kellogg's/CARQUEST Chevrolet)

The File:
* 21-years-old from Las Vegas, Nev., four career wins
* One win, three top 10s
* Average finish of 15.0
* Led in four of five races for 46 laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* One top five, two top 10s
* 17.75 average finish
* Finished fifth and 18th, respectively, last season

Loop Data Highlight:
* 324 Quality Passes, fourth-most

***

7 -- Mark Martin (No. 01 U.S. Army Chevrolet)

The File:
* 48-years-old from Batesville, Ark., 35 career wins
* Did not run at Bristol, ending a consecutive starts streak of 621 races
* Three top fives, four top 10s
* Average finish of 5.5 this season
* Led in three of five races for 42 laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* Two wins, 11 top fives and 21 top 10s; three poles
* 13.429 average finish
* Finished 13th and 24th, respectively, last season
* Led in 11 of his 42 Martinsville races for a total of 318 laps

Loop Data Highlight:
* Average Running Position of 9.517, second-best

***

8 -- Clint Bowyer (No. 07 Jack Daniel's Chevrolet)

The File:
* 27-years-old from Emporia, Kan., zero career wins
* Three top 10s
* Average finish of 14.8
* Led in three of four races for five laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* Two starts; 22.5 average finish
* Finished 22nd and 23rd, respectively, last season

Loop Data Highlight:
* Driver Rating of 90.6, eighth-best

***

9 -- Denny Hamlin (No. 11 FedEx Chevrolet)

The File:
* 26-years-old from Chesterfield, Va., two career wins
* One top five; four top 20s
* Average finish of 15.0
* Led in one of five races for 177 laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* One top five, two top 10s
* 15.667 average finish
* Finished 37th and second, respectively, last season
* Led in one of his three Martinsville races for a total of 28 laps

Loop Data Highlight:
* 53 Fastest Laps Run, tied for seventh-most

***

10 -- Carl Edwards (No. 99 Office Depot Ford)

The File:
* 27-years-old from Columbia, Mo., four career wins
* Two top 10s
* Average finish of 15.4
* Led in one race for three laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* 23.2 average finish
* Finished 16th and 12th, respectively, last season

Loop Data Highlight:
* 351 Quality Passes, second-most of any driver

***

12 -- Tony Stewart (No. 20 Home Depot Chevrolet)

The File:
* 35-years-old from Columbus, Ind., 29 career wins
* One top five, three top 10s
* Average finish of 19.0
* Led four of five races for 441 laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* Two wins, six top fives, nine top 10s
* 12.563 average finish
* Finished first and fourth, respectively, last season
* Led nine of his 16 Martinsville races for 1,182 laps

Loop Data Highlight:
* Driver Rating of 108.5, best of any driver

***

17 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. (No. 8 Budweiser Chevrolet)

The File:
* 32-years-old from Kannapolis, N.C., 17 career wins
* One top 10, three top 15s
* Average finish of 20.8
* Led in one of five races for one lap

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* Six top fives
* 14.929 average finish
* Finished fourth and 22nd, respectively, last season
* Has led in four of his 14 Martinsville races for 451 laps

Loop Data Highlight:
* 294 Quality Passes, fifth-most

***

33 -- Ricky Rudd (No. 88 Snickers Ford)

The File:
* 50-years-old from Chesapeake, Va., 23 career wins
* 29.4 average finish

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* Three wins, 13 top fives, 20 top 10s; four poles
* 14.887 average finish
* Finished seventh and 11th, respectively, in 2005
* Led in 18 of his 53 Martinsville races for 1,571 laps

***

34 -- Kasey Kahne
(No. 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge)

The File:
* 26-years-old from Enumclaw, Wash., seven career wins
* One top 10; one pole
* 27.6 average finish
* Led in two of five races for 33 laps

Martinsville Speedway Outlook:
* One top five, two top 10s
* 15.833 average finish
* Finished 35th and seventh, respectively, last season
* Led in two of his six Martinsville races for 18 laps

Loop Data Highlight:
* Driver Rating of 75.7, 17th-best

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NASCAR at Martinsville
March 26, 2007
By Micah Roberts
VegasInsider.com


In years past, Martinsville races were always a welcome sight for bettors because there was a great chance that a huge underdog could win the race. Now? Not so much. Over the last 10 Martinsville races, the race has been won by a driver who was either favored or was considered one of the top-five choices to win. In other words, there’s no value in wagering odds to win the race because betting a driver to win at 5 to 1 has no excitement.

Ah yes, the glory days. The good old times when you could do a little research and find a gem among all the boulders. A few of the gems I recall happened in the Jeff Gordon era of dominance where there weren’t many races where he was higher than 9 to 2, as should be the case when a guy wins 13 races in a season.

Martinsville became the great equalizer, not only for the driver who had great short and flat track skills, but also for the bettor who consistently threw some cash on drivers to win other than Gordon, and found themselves on the losing end more often than not. A big score with odds of 25 to 1 or higher was rare, but it did happen and usually it was at Martinsville.

Don’t get me wrong, Gordon did jam it right back into the bettors face with three Martinsville wins in a four-year span from ‘96 to ‘99. However, in that magical Gordon year of 1998, not one of those 13 wins came at Martinsville. That paved the way for some great success at the window. Bobby Hamilton went wire to wire in the spring at cashed nicely at early 25 to 1 odds. In the fall, Ricky Rudd battling the flu and having the tough assignment of being an underfunded car owner/driver, took home the checkers at 50 to 1.

Since then, there have been a few others that paid very well such as John Andretti and Ricky Craven. Following the Craven win it’s been all favorites, or rather, downhill since.

2007 could be different. All the favorites are still considered favorites, but there is a bit of the unknown due to the new Car Of Today (COT).

A couple of drivers we can key on as possible long shot winners hail from the state of Virginia. We start off with Chesterfield, VA native Denny Hamlin who had a fantastic run last week at Bristol may not be in the high odds range as some of the others were going to mention, but because of his flat track expertise, he already commands the type of respect that should make him a favorite to win. Look for odds in the 12 to 1 range or hopefully higher.

South Boston native Jeff Burton is a past winner at Martinsville. Because of two poor runs last season there, Burton could be found at 15 to 1 of higher. His last top-five was a fifth in the fall of 2005. Last weeks strong run in the COT surely won’t raise his odds any higher.

The favorites to win this week’s race go like this, and they have plenty of credentials to support their worth.

Jimmie Johnson has a 4.1 average finish position in his last nine Martinsville races. He’s had two wins over his career on the track and in his last three attempts he’s done no worse than third.

Jeff Gordon has seven career wins at Martinsville over his career which spans 28 starts. That is quite easily the most active wins there by anyone. In his last eight starts there, he has an average finish of 3.25 thanks in part to four wins over that period.

Tony Stewart is a two time winner at Martinsville in his 16 career starts. Over his three starts he is tied for the best average finish among all drivers.

Just for a notable mention for those overachievers. Bobby Labonte drives for one of the worst teams outside of Tokyo, yet last year proved that he can wheel anything at Martinsville by finishing third in the fall. Labonte has a six-year streak of at least one top-five Martinsville finish, quite an accomplishment considering the two terrible cars he’s had the last four races there.

TOP-Five Finish Prediction:

1. #11 Denny Hamlin 15/1
2. #20 Tony Stewart 6/1
3. #24 Jeff Gordon 5/1
4. #48 Jimmie Johnson 6/1
5. #31 Jeff Burton 18/1





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Just for a notable mention for those overachievers. Bobby Labonte drives for one of the worst teams outside of Tokyo, yet last year proved that he can wheel anything at Martinsville by finishing third in the fall. Labonte has a six-year streak of at least one top-five Martinsville finish, quite an accomplishment considering the two terrible cars he’s had the last four races there.

Martinsville Roll for Labonte

Pete Pistone
Managing Editor

Martinsville Speedway and Bobby Labonte go pretty well together.

In the veteran's last 18 appearances at the half-mile Virginia track, he's visited Victory Lane once and scored 10 top-10 finishes.

Labonte finished third the last time the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series visited Martinsville last October and looks for another successful run this weekend.

But it will be a whole new ballgame for Labonte and the rest of the field as the "Car of Tomorrow" makes its first-ever Martinsville appearance.

"This new generation car is going to react differently at Martinsville," Lanonte said. "The cars will slow down a little bit more because there is more 'drag' on these cars. It will react a little bit more like the Craftsman Truck Series trucks do. But, the trucks don't run 500 laps. The brake ducts that we run and the inlets that we use, the brakes have gotten a lot better, but it's possible we could see more problems than we've seen in the past."

Labonte finished 22nd in his COT debut last week at Bristol, where he said some knowledge was gained, but there is still a lot to learn.

"We know a little bit more about our Dodge Avenger now since we came away from Bristol," he said. "We don't know everything we need to know, but at least we know more. Everyone learned something or took something away from Bristol. We have a starting point, but Martinsville is a whole lot different than Bristol. Martinsville is a place where it's about keeping your fenders clean and using a lot of brakes."

With a solid track record at Martinsville over his career, Labonte brings some confidence into this weekend's race. He's climbed up to 14th in the point standings, but knows it won't be easy to maintain his position with 500 grueling laps ahead on Sunday.

"Like Bristol was, Sunday's race will still be a typical Martinsville race," he said. "It's still going to be hard to pass on the outside. It's really hard to do that. The only time you could pass on the outside was when they 'grooved' it. That made it more slippery on the bottom and better up top. That just made everyone race up top. Now everyone is back on the bottom. The top is a longer line around the track. You can pass a wounded guy on the outside, but you better plan on doing your work on the bottom."

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Re: Goody’s Cool Orange 500 News and Notes

I took a little B Labonte Top 5 at 14/1  yikes

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Driver Handicaps: Martinsville
Jeff Wackerlin
Senior Editor




      This weekend the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series heads back to Martinsville Speedway for the Goody's Cool Orange 500. To help you make your Dale Jr. Reality Cup Racing fantasy picks, RacingOne brings you our weekly detailed look at some of the field for the 500-lap event.

      Who's HOT at Martinsville Speedway
    * Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with seven wins.
    * Jimmie Johnson holds the best finishing average (7.2) among active drivers.
    * Tony Stewart is the defending race winner.
    * Ricky Rudd is second among active drivers in laps led with 1,571.

      Keep an Eye on at Martinsville Speedway
    * Jeff Burton has the second best finishing average (12.9) among drivers that have competed in every event since 1998.
    * Denny Hamlin has two top-10 finishes in three Martinsville starts.
    * Dale Earnhardt Jr. has finished in the top five in six of the last 10 Martinsville races.
    * Bobby Labonte finished third in his second track start with Petty Enterprises.
    * Ryan Newman has qualified within the top 10 in all 10 of his starts.
    * Kasey Kahne finished seventh in his last Martinsville start, plus the team seems to have a handle on the Car of Tomorrow.
    * Kevin Harvick is coming off two consecutive top 10s at Martinsville.
    * Kurt Busch has started inside the top 10 in five of the last six Martinsville races.

      Martinsville Rookie Report
      Juan Pablo Montoya and AJ Allmendinger are the only Raybestos Rookie of the Year candidates that have not competed at Martinsville Speedway in one of NASCAR's top divisions. David Ragan is the only rookie that has made a NEXTEL Cup start at Martinsville. Ragan finished 25th last fall, but not before many on track incidents with the most memorable coming with Ken Schrader. David Reutimann has made the most NASCAR starts at Martinsville, with six all coming in the Truck Series where he had an average finish of 20.8. Both Paul Menard and Regan Smith competed in the Busch event last July finishing 12th and 14th, respectively. Although he's not officially a Raybestos Rookie, this weekend will mark Regan Smith's second career Cup start. Rookie Standings

      Qualifying Tidbits
      There have been six different Bud Pole winners in the past 10 events at Martinsville Speedway. Jeff Gordon, who leads all active drivers with five poles, captured four of them in that span, including three-straight. Ryan Newman is the only other multiple pole winner since 2002. Kurt Busch is the latest pole winner at Martinsville. Tony Stewart set the current qualifying record of 98.083 mph in the 2005 fall event, for his third pole at the track. Out of the 111 races run at Martinsville, 17 have been won from the pole, and 84 were won from within the top 10. Past Pole Winners | Starting Positions of Martinsville Winners

      Looking For Speed
      Scott Riggs holds the best average start among the drivers required to qualify on time, at 12.3. Riggs won his first career NEXTEL Cup pole in this event back in 2005. It was his second top-10 start in six races at the track. Ken Schrader, who has competed in the most races at Martinsville among the group, is second in average at 16.4. Besides Riggs, Kenny Wallace and Ward Burton are the only drivers with a pole at Martinsville. Qualifying Averages

     

      1. Jeff Gordon (Points: 791): Gordon notched his second Martinsville Speedway sweep in 2005 after starting 16th and 15th, respectively. His last sweep at the track came in 2003, winning both races that year from the pole. In his most recent track start, Gordon finished fifth for his eighth consecutive finish of ninth or better. In total, he has seven wins, five poles, 16 top fives, 22 top 10s and has led in 20 races for a total of 2,206 laps. This event last year, marked the first time Gordon never led a lap at Martinsville since 2002. Gordon's 7.5 average finish is second among active drivers, just shy of his teammate Jimmie Johnson's mark of 7.2.

      2. Jeff Burton (Points Behind Leader: -3): Jeff Burton has competed in five races at Martinsville Speedway with Richard Childress Racing. His fifth-place finish in the 2005 fall event is his only top 10 with the team at the track. His lone Martinsville win came in this event in 1997. The victory was one of the 11 top 10s he recorded with Roush Racing. At 574, Burton is ranked fifth in laps led (all coming with Roush) among active drivers.

      3. Jimmie Johnson (Points Behind Leader: -75): Johnson won two races at Martinsville Speedway in the 2004 and 2006 October event. His wins came in his current streak of nine consecutive finishes of ninth or better dating back to 2002. Johnson won his first track pole last year in this event and then went on to capture his second straight third-place finish. Johnson has led 611 laps at the .526-mile speedway.

      4. Matt Kenseth (Points Behind Leader: -94): Last year in this event, Kenseth finished 24th in his 14th start at Martinsville Speedway. It marked his first finish outside the top 20 since finishing 22nd in the 2003 spring race. Kenseth's three top 10s have all come in the spring race. Kenseth's best finish in the fall came last year when he placed 11th.

      5. Kevin Harvick (Points Behind Leader: -144): Harvick has four top-10 finishes in 11 career starts at Martinsville Speedway with his best finish of seventh coming in the 2003 fall and 2006 spring race. He last was out front at Martinsville in the fall of 2004 when he led 104 of his track total of 147 laps.

      6. Kyle Busch (Points Behind Leader: -152): In the last three races at Martinsville Speedway, Kyle Busch has finished ninth, fifth and 18th, respectively. His first track start in 2005 resulted in a 39th-place finish after mechanical problems took him out of contention. Busch also has two top 10s in the Truck Series at Martinsville.

      8. Clint Bowyer (Points Behind Leader: -170): Bowyer finished 22nd and 23rd, respectively, in his first two NEXTEL Cup starts at Martinsville Speedway in 2006. He won the pole for the Martinsville Busch race and went on to lead 58 laps en route to a second-place finish. He also led 84 laps in the 2006 truck race last October on his way to a seventh-place finish.

      9. Denny Hamlin (Points Behind Leader: -185): Noted as one of the toughest tracks to conquer as a rookie, Hamlin went out and finished eighth in the fall event at Martinsville Speedway in just his third career NEXTEL Cup start. In this event last year, Hamlin never recovered from a bad qualifying run and went on to score his only DNF of 2006. He made up for his spring run in the fall by qualifying third and finishing second. Prior to Cup racing, Hamlin competed in the late model races at Martinsville where he posted three top 10s.

      10. Carl Edwards (Points Behind Leader: -193): Edwards has yet to finish inside the top 10 in five career starts at Martinsville Speedway. Edwards, who finished 12th last year, saw his best track performance come in the Craftsman Truck Series race in 2003 when he finished second.

      11. David Stremme (Points Behind Leader: -204): Stremme has posted an average finish of 26.5 in his two career NEXTEL Cup starts at Martinsville Speedway.

      12. Tony Stewart (Points Behind Leader: -216): Stewart finally got his second Martinsville Speedway win in this event last year after dominating three consecutive events, leading a combined 818 laps. In the fall, Stewart did not lead any laps for the first time since 2004, but did go on to capture his ninth top 10 in his 16th start.

      13. Elliott Sadler (Points Behind Leader: -248): This weekend, Sadler will make his 16th start - second with Evernham Motorsports - at Martinsville Speedway. Last spring, he drove the Robert Yates Racing Ford to a sixth-place finish for his third top 10. His only top-five finish (fifth) came in the spring race in 2003. That race saw him lead for the second time at the track for five laps. He led for the first time at the track in this event in 2001 for 34 laps. In his first track start with Evernham Motorsports he finished 38th.

      14. Bobby Labonte (Points Behind Leader: -266): Labonte has made 28 starts at Martinsville Speedway, capturing one win and one pole. His last five of 13 top 10s at Martinsville have all been finishes of fourth or better. Last year, Labonte finished 32nd and third in his first track starts with Petty Enterprises.

      15. J.J. Yeley (Points Behind Leader: -269): Yeley finished 20th and 31st, respectively, in his only NEXTEL Cup starts at Martinsville Speedway. His best track finish came in the Busch Series when he started 10th and finished ninth. Yeley did lead one lap in this event last year.

      16. Greg Biffle (Points Behind Leader: -270): In eight starts, Biffle has never finished in the top 15 at Martinsville Speedway. He scored his best finish of 17th in the 2004 fall race. Although Biffle has yet to perform well at the Virginia track in the Cup Series, he has posted one pole and two top 10s in three Craftsman Truck Series starts.

      17. Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Points Behind Leader: -279): Earnhardt Jr. has finished in the top five in six of the last 10 races at Martinsville Speedway. A pair of third-place finishes in the spring races in 2003 and 2004 mark Junior's best performances in 14 starts at the half-mile track.

      18. Jamie McMurray (Points Behind Leader: -279): McMurray finished ninth in his first Martinsville start with Roush Racing last spring. The finish was his fifth top 10 in eight starts at the track. McMurray's best Martinsville finish (second) came in the 2004 fall race when he led 43 of his 49 career laps at the track.

      20. Kurt Busch (Points Behind Leader: -294): Busch has competed in 13 races at Martinsville Speedway posting four top-10 finishes, including a win in the 2000 fall race. His lone victory came from the 36th starting position, the farthest back a race winner has started at Martinsville by 12 positions. Busch finished 11th and 27th, respectively, in his first two track starts with Penske Racing in 2006. He also won the pole for the fall race.

      21. Robby Gordon (Points Behind Leader: -294): Gordon has yet to post a top-15 finish in 13 starts at Martinsville Speedway. His average finish is 32.9.

      23. Ryan Newman (Points Behind Leader: -323): Newman has qualified within the top 10 in all 10 of his starts at Martinsville Speedway. Two of the starts have come from the pole, both in the fall events (2002, 2004). Last year in this event, Newman finished 18th, ending a streak of five consecutive top 10s at the track. He went on to finish 13th in the spring, bringing his track average to 15.2.

      24. David Gilliland (Points Behind Leader: -343): Gilliland started 29th and finished 28th in his only NEXTEL Cup start at Martinsville Speedway.

      25. Martin Truex Jr. (Points Behind Leader: -347): Truex Jr. has only made two career NEXTEL Cup starts at Martinsville Speedway where he has an average finishing position of 27.5.

      26. Casey Mears (Points Behind Leader: -362): In eight career NEXTEL Cup starts at Martinsville Speedway, Mears has one top-10 finish and an average finishing position of 23.9.

      27. Jeff Green (Points Behind Leader: -367): Green captured his second top 10 at Martinsville Speedway last October with his current team Haas/CNC. He has yet to lead a lap in 13 starts.

      28. Joe Nemechek (Points Behind Leader: -371): Nemechek has yet to post a top-five finish at Martinsville Speedway in 25 starts. His best finish came in the 2005 spring race when he finished 10th. He has led in three races (116 laps), including the fall event in 1999 for 76 laps after starting on the pole in the No. 42 Felix Sabates Chevrolet.

      29. Reed Sorenson (Points Behind Leader: -386): Sorenson only has two career NEXTEL Cup starts at Martinsville Speedway where he has an average finish of 23.5.

      30. Tony Raines (Points Behind Leader: -387): Sunday will mark Raines' fifth start at Martinsville and third with Hall of Fame Racing. His best finish (14th) came last October after starting 11th.

      31. Sterling Marlin (Points Behind Leader: -391): This race at Martinsville Speedway marks Marlin's 42nd start there. He has posted four top fives and 14 top 10s and has led in 11 races for 503 laps. Last year's spring race was Marlin's first track start with Ginn Racing. In that event he led nine laps and finished 14th.

      32. Kyle Petty (Points Behind Leader: -409): Petty will be making his 53rd career Martinsville start on Sunday where he’s posted five top fives and 15 top-10 finishes.

      33. Ricky Rudd (Points Behind Leader: -417): In 53 starts at Martinsville Speedway, Rudd has captured 20 top 10s and has an average finish of 14.9. Sunday will mark Rudd's seventh NEXTEL Cup track start with Robert Yates Racing where he holds an average finish of 12.8 with the team.

      34. Kasey Kahne (Points Behind Leader: -426): Kahne is coming off his second career top 10 at Martinsville Speedway with his seventh-place finish last October. Last year in this event, Kahne recorded a DNF, finishing 35th after engine problems.

      35. Johnny Sauter (Points Behind Leader: -445): Sauter is guaranteed a start Sunday, since he's in the top 35 in owner's points, for his third Martinsville Cup race. The start will also mark his first at Martinsville with Haas/CNC Racing.

      36. Dave Blaney (Points Behind Leader: -466): In 12 career Cup starts, Blaney has an average finishing position at Martinsville of 27.8. This weekend he will attempt to make his seventh track start with Bill Davis Racing.

      37. Dale Jarrett (Points Behind Leader: -471): Jarrett made his first career Cup start at Martinsville on April 29, 1984. In the 41 races since then, Jarrett has posted one win, nine top-five and 18 top-10 finishes. His last top 10 at Martinsville came on April 18, 2004, when he finished 10th. Jarrett has led a total of 145 laps at the .526-mile speedway, and has the fourth best finishing average (13.5) among all active drivers that have competed in every event since 1998. This weekend Jarrett will make his first track start with Michael Waltrip Racing.

      38. Brian Vickers (Points Behind Leader: -492): In six career Martinsville starts, Vickers has notched one top 10. This weekend he will attempt to make his first track start with Team Red Bull.

      39. Scott Riggs (Points Behind Leader: -526): Last year in this event, Riggs recorded his first top 10 at Martinsville Speedway by finishing 10th. He won the pole for the 2005 spring race, but battled an ill-handling car during that race, to finish 21st.

      40. Ken Schrader (Points Behind Leader: -547): Schrader looks to make his 45th career Martinsville start where he compiled one top five and 18 top-10 finishes. Last year he finished 40th and 41st, respectively, in his first two track starts with the Woods Brothers.

      42. Mike Bliss (Points Behind Leader: -579): Bliss has competed in seven events at Martinsville Speedway with five different teams. His finishing average is 30.1.

      46. Ward Burton (Points Behind Leader: -648): Burton made his return to NEXTEL Cup racing last fall at Martinsville Speedway where he finished 26th. Prior to that event, his last start at Martinsville came in the fall in 2004. In that race he started fourth and finished 28th behind the wheel of the No. 0 Haas Chevrolet. Burton's three top-10 finishes and one pole at Martinsville came with Bill Davis Racing.

      48. Regan Smith (Points Behind Leader: -703): Smith will make his first NEXTEL Cup appearance at Martinsville Speedway on Sunday.

      50. Jeremy Mayfield (Points Behind Leader: -725): In 22 career Martinsville Cup starts, Mayfield has an average finishing position of 21.8.

      54. Michael Waltrip (Points Behind Leader: -818): Waltrip hopes to make his 43rd career Martinsville start this weekend where he has an average finish of 20.7 and one top-five and five top-10 finishes.

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Re: Goody’s Cool Orange 500 News and Notes

Michael Waltrip missed another race go figure  big_smile

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Hamlin happy after pole win in Martinsville
March 30th, 2007

Martinsville, VA (Sports Network) - Denny Hamlin won the pole for Sunday's Goody's Cool Orange 500 Nextel Cup race at the Martinsville Speedway. Driving the "Car of Tomorrow" for the second week in a row the No.11 Joe Gibbs Racing Chevrolet circled the 0.528-mile Virginia short track in 19.911 seconds (95.103 m.p.h.).

The pole victory was Hamlin's first of the season and fifth of his Nextel Cup career.

"It's a testament to how hard these guys work," said Hamlin. "I have to say thanks to the entire engineering staff at Joe Gibbs Racing for coming up with these setups that we're running. They have done such a great job."

Starting alongside Hamlin will be Jamie McMurray who posted a second-best time of 19.942 seconds.

Jeff Gordon (19.964) and Ken Schrader (20.012) will make up row two.

Other drivers of note and their starting positions: Kevin Harvick (6th), Tony Stewart (7th), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (8th), Kyle Busch (14th), Jeff Burton (19th, Jimmie Johnson (20th), Juan Montoya 23rd and Matt Kenseth 33rd.

For the fifth straight weekend, Michael Waltrip failed to qualify for the race. He has raced only once this season finishing 30th in the Daytona 500.

Last week's Food City 500 was full of surprises. The two best cars on the track, driven by Joe Gibbs Racing's Stewart (led race-high 257 laps) and Hamlin (led 177 laps) both finished outside the top-12.

The race was won by Busch not only because he was the next best car on the track, but because the two cars behind him drove a clean race down the stretch. At Bristol that is ALWAYS a surprise.

As the laps dwindled, Busch's Hendrick Motorsports teammate Gordon was in second place. So Busch knew he would get a fair shake from the four-time series champion. And on the final two laps Burton was on his rear bumper and Burton is well known for being a clean competitor.

Burton had two chances to use the "Bristol Bump" on Busch and both times elected to race him clean. It ultimately cost Burton the win and 20 points, but somewhere down the road when the positions are reversed he will be rewarded.

Don't expect this week's race to be so "gentlemanly."

For the most part, the drivers were not happy with the COT. They felt they couldn't get the car to turn in the corners and it made for a generally tough weekend.

"I said that I wanted to go out and win this race so I could tell everybody how terrible this thing is to drive," said winner Busch. "It just doesn't turn...For me it's just not very much fun to drive. It's hard to race around on the track with other competitors because it doesn't have a lot of maneuverability. I can't stand to drive them."

Even Mark Martin, who watched the race on television, wasn't a fan. "I thought the COT handled poorly enough that the guys actually didn't run over each other because they didn't have good control of their car," he said. "It was a cleaner race than what we normally see because the cars were so hard to control, they weren't able to get in there and mix it up."

Hopefully this week will be better.

The race is set to drop the green flag on Sunday at 2 p.m. (et).

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Re: Goody’s Cool Orange 500 News and Notes

Martinsville Goody's Cool Orange 500 Happy Hour Average Speeds

[img]http://www.nascapper.com/statpages/0706/prac3a.gif[/img]
[img]http://www.nascapper.com/statpages/0706/prac3b.gif[/img]

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Martinsville Driver Updates
March 31, 2007
By Micah Roberts
VegasInsider.com


Top 5 rated cars after all practice and qualifying sessions:
1) Denny Hamlin
2) Jeff Gordon
3) Dale Earnhardt Jr
4) Kevin Harvick
5) Tony Stewart

Best longshot candidates to win:
1) Martin Truex Jr
2) Jamie McMurray
3) Clint Bowyer

Best drivers to WAGER AGAINST
1) Kasey Kahne
2) Elliott Sadler
3) Scott Riggs
4) Caey Mears

Best awful drivers to WAGER ON at plus money in matchups:
1) Kyle Petty
2) Bobby Labonte
3) David Ragan

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For some reason or another I have always hated this track and just have two bets this week  tongue

J Burton 15/1

B Labonte Top 5 14/1

I did play one matchup today so far

B Labonte -115 / S Riggs @ TheGreek

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Time bomb set to explode in Martinsville
Jeff Hammond / FOX Sports

The stage is set for a time bomb to go off this weekend at Martinsville Speedway.

It's amazing how the whole week leading into Bristol and the debut of the COT car turned out to be a blur, but in slow motion. I know people are going to ask, "How can you have both?" It seemed like everything was happening so fast, but it was definitely a much different race than we expected. I don't think anybody could have predicted that Kyle Busch, not one of the usual Bristol contenders, would pull off the win.

Other things that we anticipated didn't come to pass, including torn up front noses and splitters laying on the racetrack. I don't know if that's good or bad, but it's like a time bomb. The timer has been turned on. Eventually, all of these things will happen, and teams will need to go back and grab a wing because they knocked it off backing into the wall. We just didn't see it at Bristol. That's surprising, and NASCAR had to be pleased.

We could see a lot more cars with damage and a lot more guys being turned around. Drivers will think about what they should have done at Bristol, and some will think that they shouldn't have given a little bit for fear of knocking the radiator out of the car. But they should have a lot more confidence this week.

Who to Watch
# Kyle Busch: The only thing that could stand between Busch and a good weekend is NASCAR after saying in Victory Lane that the Car of Tomorrow sucks. I don't think that sat really well with the powers that be. I applaud his willingness to be candid, but I question his timing. Those comments might have been better served behind closed doors, but you've got to do what you've got to do. That's one thing about the Busch brothers. They're not afraid to speak their minds and deal with the consequences afterward.
# Tony Stewart: After leading 257 laps at Bristol, a fuel pump derailed Stewart's shot at a win. Look for him to redeem himself on Sunday.
# Jeff Gordon: You've got to look at the guys who were a factor last week, and the records of these short track racers prove they are good at all short tracks. The winningest active driver at Martinsville, Gordon, will be back in search of his eighth win.
# Jeff Burton: It seems like Burton is on track to make another championship run this year. He had a very good second-place performance at Bristol.

What to Watch
# More beating and banging: Some frustrations will carry over from last week. Several drivers struggled with the COT at Bristol, and they were inadvertently in the way for a lot of other drivers. Drivers won't put up with slow cars two weeks in a row, and they will get more aggressive. They will be in more of a hurry and less tolerant. Last week, they said, "This is the first time for everybody. I'm not having a really good day. My opponent just happens to be having a worse day." This week, drivers will say, "Let me help put you out of your misery." There's going to be more beating and banging, pushing and shoving than there was at Bristol. Driver confidence will be higher the second time around with the COT, and crew chiefs will be up on the chip, telling their drivers, "Hey, get him out of your way. You've got to go. You've got to go." When that starts, we're going to see what we normally see at these places. People are going to get upset, and people are going to get roughed up. We'll have a shortage of patience and an abundance of torn-up race cars.
   
# Recycling race cars: There aren't many Cars of Tomorrow available so you have to protect what you've got. Kyle Busch's crew chief, Alan Gustafson, said the winning car at Bristol will be his backup car at Martinsville. Normally, your Bristol car isn't scheduled to go anywhere until August. This time, there's such a COT shortage that a lot of teams are turning around their Bristol cars, not only as backups, but maybe even for primaries.
# Tire talk: It's the first time Goodyear has run that style or hardness of tire at Bristol and Martinsville. They all understand the load factors in the corners so I don't expect any problems. NASCAR and Goodyear are working to make sure those guys don't get too low on air pressure. If they go too low, they'll cut down sidewalls or create a problem where they damage the construction of the tire and get into the wall or lose a tire.
# No Martinsville test, no problem: Although teams couldn't test at Martinsville, many headed to Greenville-Pickens, Caraway Speedway, Hickory, N.C. and even Lakeland, Fla. to get ready for this race. After Bristol, they have a better idea of what to expect, what your car will take, what it won't take, and you also know how much harder you can get after this thing now compared with last weekend.

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mvbski wrote:



I did play one matchup today so far

B Labonte -115 / S Riggs @ TheGreek

Line has shot up to -155 @ TheGreek  yikes

SIA still has it at -120  wink

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mvbski wrote:


For some reason or another I have always hated this track and just have two bets this week  tongue

J Burton 15/1

B Labonte Top 5 14/1

I did play one matchup today so far

B Labonte -115 / S Riggs @ TheGreek

God I hate this track  :x Labonte crashes early

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Re: Goody’s Cool Orange 500 News and Notes

Looks like rain may affect the outcome today  ???

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Johnson edges Gordon for win at Martinsville
April 1st, 2007

Martinsville, VA (Sports Network) - Jimmie Johnson refused to budge from the bottom of the track and no matter how much Jeff Gordon pushed he didn't give way before winning Sunday's Goody's Cool Orange 500 Nextel Cup race at the Martinsville Speedway. The No.48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet took the checkered flag 0.066 seconds ahead of Gordon.

The victory was Johnson's third of the season and 26th of his Nextel Cup career.

"I'm speechless," said Johnson who won the traditional grandfather clock that goes along with a big check. "To have a duel like that at the end, that was some of the hardest driving I've ever done. And then to have my bumper beat off by my teammate, in a way that didn't jeopardize either one of us, was really a class act by Jeff."

Pole winner Denny Hamlin brought the field to the green flag for 500 laps of short track racing on the flat "paper clip" of Martinsville VA. Hamlin kept the lead while Gordon and Jamie McMurray fought for second place behind the Joe Gibbs Racing driver. Gibbs' other drivers were also doing well with Tony Stewart in fifth and J.J. Yeley in eighth place after 25 laps.

Hamlin led a total of 40 laps before he and most of the leaders came down pit lane during a Bobby Labonte caused caution flag. Elliott Sadler elected to stay on the track and he inherited the lead and five bonus points.

Sadler lasted 10 laps before the newer tires of Hamlin and Gordon took their toll and he fell from the top position. First Hamlin held the lead, then Gordon made a move around Hamlin for the race lead on lap 56.

Through 150 laps, Gordon and Hamlin led 140 of them and were dominating early on. But two other cars were progressing their way through the top-10. They were Stewart, who had dominated at Bristol last week until a fuel pump cable broke and Johnson who always seems to improve as the day goes along.

After 200 laps it was still Hamlin and Gordon, but now Stewart was in third with Dale Earnhardt Jr. in fourth and Johnson up to sixth.

Following a caution flag just past the 200-lap mark, Hamlin's pit crew had a problem with a lug nut and the No.11 came out 10th after leading for most of the race. Stewart's No.20 Home Depot crew got him out first and he led six laps - all yellow flag laps. When they went back to green Gordon quickly made the move under Stewart for the race lead.

Gordon was happily cruising along when his No.24 Chevrolet shot up the track and though he kept it off the wall he lost nine positions. Earnhardt Jr., inherited the lead with Stewart in second and Johnson in third.

The two early leaders, Gordon and Hamlin, were stuck in the middle of the field after long pit stops to check out their cars' problems.

Earnhardt Jr. was having fun in the clear air and he quickly built the biggest lead of the day, more than three seconds after 275 laps. Evidently Gordon's problems were only temporary because by lap 280 he cracked the top-10. Hamlin was making much slower progress and was just 12th. Meanwhile, Harvick reported a fuel problem.

Could it be similar to Stewart's last week?

Lap 304 saw Stewart duck to the bottom of the track and "out-brake" Earnhardt Jr. for the lead. But following the next caution flag "Junior's" pit crew got him back onto the track with the lead.

While Earnhardt Jr., and Johnson sat one-two with 150 laps to go, the Stewart, Gordon and Hamlin were sitting just behind them and itching to get back to the lead.

Three-hundred fifty seven laps into the race and the clouds darkened letting loose with a quick rain storm that forced officials to red flag the race.

They didn't have to wait long and the race restarted with Earnhardt still leading. About 25 laps later, the caution flag flew and strategies split. Some teams pitted and expected to go the distance while others wanted to wait a little longer so they would have newer tires at the finish.

Kyle Busch and Johnson, who stopped right after the rain delay, inherited the lead while Earnhardt Jr., Gordon and Hamlin pitted.

Johnson got around Busch for the lead just before lap 390, but it was Hamlin that was looking the strongest. He was third and attacking the leaders less than three seconds back. Gordon was up to sixth but Earnhardt Jr. was stuck in eighth and not moving up.

Johnson expanded his lead to half-a-second, but Hamlin cut the lead to 1.6 seconds with 100 laps remaining in the race. The No.48 Chevy built the lead to nearly one second, but at that point he began to encounter slower cars which made keeping his margin much more difficult.

A caution flag on lap 424 (Dale Jarrett) left teams with a decision - new tires or track position?

Busch pitted from second place as did Clint Bowyer from eighth, but the remainder of the leaders stayed right where they were.

The race would restart with the strongest cars at the lead. Johnson was first having led 53 laps followed by Hamlin (125 laps led), Gordon (92) and Earnhardt Jr. (136). Busch restarted in eighth place.

Johnson quickly got by the lapped inside car of Sadler but Hamlin and Gordon had a tougher time which allowed Johnson to build a lead. Gordon and Hamlin went at each other and finally on lap 449 Gordon earned the second place spot. Gordon was faster than Johnson, but could he pass him once he caught him?

Gordon easily pulled within a car length with 40 laps to go. He took a look down the back straight on the next lap, but didn't take the shot. It might have been his best shot as the pair quickly came up on lapped traffic.

Gordon got his nose underneath Johnson with 27 laps to go, but couldn't quite make the pass cleanly so backed off. Caution flag No.13 flew for a J.J. Yeley spin and the battle was delayed.

The race restarted with 18 laps to go.

Johnson cleared Sadler on the restart, but it took Gordon a couple of laps and that let Johnson get a 0.558 second lead. He wouldn't relinquish it and Johnson won the race to the checkered flag. It was close, but Gordon raced him clean and just couldn't move him out of the way enough to get by.

"The only way I could get by him was to wreck him," said Gordon. "He's my teammate...I thought I had a chance a couple of times, but I'm real proud of Hendrick Motorsports."

Hamlin, Busch and Earnhardt Jr. completed the top-five.

"We had a great car, it just wasn't as good after the rain," said Earnhardt Jr.

Gordon (966) retains the points lead, 28 ahead of Jeff Burton (938), who finished sixth. Johnson (906) is third overall, 60 points behind Gordon.

After a week off, the series will resume at the Texas Motor Speedway on Sunday, April 15th.

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TUMS Top 10 Moments from Martinsville
Sunday, 01 April 2007

PITTSBURGH, (April 1, 2007) – The sixth stop of the 2007 season at Martinsville Speedway once again had the stars of the Nextel Cup Series experiencing several indigestion-causing incidents, from failing to make the race to late-race crashes. Each weekend, PRN lead anchor Doug Rice picks the Top 10 TUMS Moments from that week’s racing activities. For the sixth week of the NEXTEL Cup season, top TUMS honors go to:


10. Bobby Labonte, who had a good day going when he spun and ended up in the wall.


9. Every driver, crew member and media person who ate a Martinsville hot dog this weekend.


8. Richard Childress and Robby Gordon, for their ongoing, indigestion-causing sponsorship battles with NASCAR.


7. Michael Waltrip's season of misery continues as he misses his fifth straight race.


6. Ward Burton crashes his primary car in practice and the native Virginian heads home early.


5. Bill Davis, who’s Toyotas both qualified well but suffered problems only to finish 37th and 38th.


4. Jeff Gordon, who was denied a chance to tie Dale Earnhardt's victory total by his own teammate, which caused him heartburn after the race.


3. Casey Mears, who dropped seven spots in the Driver’s Standings after his 42nd place finish today.


2. Dale Jarrett spins only to have the right rear tire come off and actually travel further down the racetrack than his race car a real cause for indigestion.


1. Kevin Harvick, who saw his day go up in smoke – literally – when a fire in his car filled his cockpit up with smoke and forced him to park the car while they put out the flames.

www.backstretchmotorsports.com

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