The gaynalysis is just one gay NASCAR fan’s take on the race weekend… you can read the “straight” recap of the STP 400 from Kansas Speedway by clicking here.
Maybe only having 5 caution in the last two races is some sort of viral Earth Day tribute cooked up by the PR folks at NASCAR. Let your
freak green flag fly.
The long green flag laps today in Kansas did compare with the action from last week – but as for the racing on the track it was clear…… you aren’t in
Kansas Texas anymore. With incredible action on the restarts, blowed’ up engines and a fantastic closing lap battle the race in Kansas was no cookie cutter copy of last week as Denny Hamlin followed the yellow brick road to victory lane.
A few drivers might have preferred to blow away in a tornado with Toto rather than endure what Kansas Speedway had to offer.
Engines were failing left and left….. Clint “perpetual sunburn” Bowyer, Jeff Gordon, Mark Abs Martin, Bobby Labonte and Kurt Busch had engine problems while Kevin “Otis-Daddy” Harvick and Kasey Myers-Kahne ran out of gas – saying the lower than expected temps messed up their math.
With long green flag segments – the importance of pit stops were paramount. Interestingly though, there weren’t any impactful penalties all day… but there were several drivers (Keselowski and Junior) who had issues making the commitment into pit road. The #48 team missed a lug nut…. a rare mis-step and I am sure that wrench man is steering clear of Chad Knaus on the company bus.
There were only 14 lead changes (the record was 13 set in 2002) but I do not put much stock in that stat….. I am being consistent – I never put stock in this stat last year when we were breaking records for lead changes in ‘Dega. Bottom line: tons of lead changes do not necessarily equate to great racing…. nor do fewer lead changes necessarily equate to boring racing.
THe Q4G shout-out this week must go to Martin Truex Jr. Heyyyyyyyy Martin! Not only did he lead the most laps but in his words – he was one bad set of tires from bringing Michael Waltrip Racing to victory lane. With three laps to go and on the last lap Truex proved he was no Cowardly Lion by making a heroic dive to the bottom of turn four to try and slip past Hamlin but getting the car to stick was not what NAPA knew-how to do. His 2nd place finish must have given some solace to Michael Waltrip who was loading two blown engines into his haulers.
Third place finisher Jimmie Johnson put on one hell of a show as well…. while Chad Knaus may have questioned his call to make a pit stop – Jimmie took the 4 sticker tires from 12th to 4th in less than 15 laps. It even looked like he might be “the one” to get his bossman the 200th win but, as the laps wound down, the #48 just could not get close enough to battle with the #11 and #55.
If all mile-and-a-half tracks were that much fun I wouldn’t mind em’ dominating the schedule. Like every driver who was asked – I hope the repave of Kansas won’t ruin a good thing.
(OK I know… I made too many Wizard of Oz analogies… but this is a GAYnalysis… so lay off!)