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Sunday, June 19, 2011

No Roush rout at Michigan this time

BROOKLYN, Mich. -- Often, when NASCAR makes its trips to the Irish Hills, Jack Roush and his Fords dominate.

And for a little while, that looked like it would happen again. Greg Biffle and Matt Kenseth ran great early and were swapping the lead. Carl Edwards was top-5 much of the day, and another Ford – A.J. Allmendinger – also ran well most of the day.

But in the end, Toyota won the battle, with Denny Hamlin emerging as the victor.
Matt Kenseth said that despite being strong all day, he just didn’t get a good run on the final restart and Denny took advantage, leaving Kenseth in 2nd.

“I just couldn’t quite get Denny. After restarts we were kind of slow and tight in the middle which isn’t a good thing to be in a short shootout. We had a great car in the long run though. I tried what I could to get around him but I slipped on the restart. I just needed more laps to get it going.”

Still, Kenseth was happy with the car overall, and moved up a spot to 6th in the points.
Another Ford driver who was not as happy was David Ragan, who finished 20th.

“Right from the get-go, nothing was really going our way. Our UPS Ford was a top-10 car, but after our first trip into the pits, the No. 88 and No. 51 got together and ran us up the race track and we had to come back in and fix our fender,” Ragan said. “We went back out on track in the high 30s and drove back towards the front and we had the speed, but we didn't catch the cautions right. We tried short pitting to get back on the lead lap and it just didn't work out. I think we had a top 10 or top-five car; we could just never seem to get up there. It's just very disappointing. Everything that could go wrong did and we'll just have to regroup.”

Bad day for Jimmie
MIS is one of the tracks Jimmie Johnson had yet to win at coming into Sunday, and that’s still the case.

His day got off to a bad start, and didn’t improve – finishing 27th mostly dropping three spots to 5th in points.

“Yeah, tough day. We got turned around early and ground the sway bar off the right front and we lost a couple laps from that and we were just kind of in a hole at that point and couldn’t get caught back up. It’s just part of it.”

Don't get too excited, though. I'm pretty sure he'll still make the Chase and battle for the title as usual. It is nice, though, to see that he and the #48 team are human.

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