NOTE: This post is a recap of what happened last fall at Richmond
Richmond Top Ten Starters
- Denny Hamlin
- Kyle Larson
- Matt Kenseth
- Jamie McMurray
- Kurt Busch
- Martin Truex Jr.
- Kasey Kahne
- Austin Dillon
- Kyle Busch
- Jimmie Johnson
Richmond Pre-race Notes
Dale Earnhardt Jr. missed the race, Jeff Gordon drove the #88.
This race was the regular season cut-off line so some drivers raced with agenda’s.
Richmond Race Notes
Denny Hamlin who started on the pole selected the low-line. He led 49 of the first 51 laps (Jeffrey Earnhardt led two under caution).
On lap #4 Matt Kenseth passed Kyle Larson moving up to 2nd.
Kasey Kahne really liked his car and he was confident with his speed. On lap 10 he was running in 8th. His team reportedly brought more speed that weekend. Last year at RIR Kahne had results of 4th and 6th.
Big Moment: On lap #21 Ryan Blaney got into the wall hard and brought out the caution. He was running around 20th at the time. He immediately took his car to the garage. He went on to finish 39th. The cause of his issue was “spotter related.”
Notable Moment: During the first round of pit stops Chase Elliott pitted twice. It didn’t really cost him because he started near the back anyways.
Running order on lap 22: 11,20,42,18,78,1,3,5,41,4 … 48,31,2,88,14,19,22,6,17,47 … 16,27,13,10,95,43,23,24,7,34 … 15,46,93,38,44,55,32,83,30,21
Denny Hamlin’s car was very strong but on lap 38 he had a mirror full of Matt Kenseth.
Running order on lap 41: 11,20,78,18,1,3,42,4,5,2 … 41,88,48,22,31,19,14,17,6,16 … 13,47,27,24,10,43,34,95,38,23 … 15,44,7,93,46,55,32,83,30,21
On lap 45 Martin Truex Jr. passed Kenseth for 2nd.
On lap 52 Martin Truex Jr. passed Denny Hamlin for the lead. He then led the next 34 laps (until pit stops). His car was very strong over long runs.
Notable Moment: On lap 62 Landon Cassill was off the track in the garage area because of brake issues. Prior to his problem he was running around 30th.
Kasey Kahne’s car was getting looser over a long run around lap 67.
Running order on lap 69: 78,11,20,18,1,3,42,2,4,22 … 41,88,19,5,31,17,48,6,16,14 … 24,43,10,13,27,34,47,23,95,44 … 15,93,7,46,55,32,83,30,38,21
Matt Kenseth’s team worked on his car to make it good over long runs.
Jamie McMurray really liked his car. He was running in 5th on lap 80.
Austin Dillon was happy with his car over long runs. He was in 6th on lap 82.
Running order on lap 83: 78,20,11,18,1,3,2,22,42,4 … 41,88,19,31,5,17,48,6,14,16 … 24,43,10,27,34,47,23,13,44,95 … 15,93,7,46,55,32,83,30,38,21
Brad Keselowski’s team did some experimentation with his car this race to make it more competitive. He really liked his car and he was fast over long runs.
Notable Moment: On lap 85 while running in 27th AJ Allmendinger got loose and spun bringing out the caution. He didn’t hit anything.
Notable Moment: During the AJ Allmendinger caution Kurt Busch missed his pit stall and had to pit again. It dropped him back to 22nd.
Notable Moment: During the AJ Allmendinger caution Jimmie Johnson was caught speeding on pit road which dropped him back to the low-twenties.
Following the AJ Allmendinger caution Denny Hamlin won the race off pit road. He choose the inside line and led the next 13 laps.
Big Moment: On lap 95 while running in the mid-teens (right around 15th) Chase Elliott got into the wall hard and brought out the caution. Elliott remained on the track and stayed on the lead lap. Chris Buescher got back on the lead lap following this caution.
Running order on lap 103: 78,11,20,18,2,1,42,22,4,19 … 6,3,14,16,31,41,17,43,5,48 … 27,88,10,24,34,93,23,15,95,13 … 47,44,7,46,55,83,32,30,39,21
Big Moment: On lap 104 Aric Almirola had a flat tire and was off pace. He was running in 16th at the time. This problem dropped him two laps down to the mid-thirties. No caution came out.
Big Moment: On lap 109 David Ragan was on pit road after getting into the wall. No caution came out.
Kevin Harvick had a good car. His team did some big changes t to his car pre-race and they felt that they would either be a hero or a zero. His car was good over long runs.
Running order on lap 123: 78,20,11,18,1,2,42,22,19,4 … 41,6,88,3,16,27,31,14,17,5 … 48,10,34,24,13,15,44,95,7,47 … 46,93,55,43,83,32,23,30,38,21
Kurt Busch’s car was good over long runs. On lap 131 he cracked the top ten.
Running order on lap 148: 78,20,11,2,18,1,22,41,42,19 … 4,88,3,6,15,16,27,17,5,14 … 48,34,10,24,13,15,7,44,95,47 … 93,46,43,55,83,23,32,30,38,21
Jimmie Johnson wasn’t the happiest with his car. He was in 21st on lap 151.
Around lap 160 Paul Menard got into the side of Greg Biffle.
Running order on lap 170: 78,20,11,2,41,1,22,18,88,4 … 19,3,42,6,31,27,16,17,5,14 … 34,10,48,24,13,15,7,95,44,43 … 93,46,55,23,83,47,32,30,38,21
On lap 176 Greg Biffle who was in 17th was the last driver on the lead lap.
On lap 179 Martin Truex Jr. was setting a blistering pace. He was 6 seconds ahead of Matt Kenseth who was in second.
Around lap 185 a round of green flag pit stops ensued.
During green flag pit stops on lap 187 Ryan Newman was blocked in his pit stall for a few seconds. It cost him 4 positions when the round of pit stops cycled thru.
Running order on lap 191: 78,48 (didn’t pit yet. Was stretching his fuel),20,11,41,2,88,42,1,4 … 22,19,18,6,3,27,16,5,14,31 … 17,10,24,34,15,13,7,43,95,44 … 47,93,23,83,46,55,32,30,38,21