Wrap-up: Las VegasSunday, March 11, 2012
This past weekend, Las Vegas Motor Speedway in Las Vegas, Nevada hosted the Sprint Cup Series Kobalt Tools 400 and the Nationwide Series Sam’s Town 300.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Winner: Tony Stewart wins the Kobalt Tools 400, his 45th victory in 467 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races. This is the No. 14 Chevrolet driver's first victory and first top-10 finish in 2012. It is his first victory and ninth top-10 finish in 14 races at Las Vegas. Stewart moved up 8 spots to 7th in the 2012 NSCS point standings.
Pole: Kasey Kahne wins the $5,900 Coors Light Pole Award. The No. 5 Chevrolet driver set a new track record with his 190.456 mph qualifying lap. He was passed on the first lap of the race by teammate No. 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. (who led 70 laps and finished 10th). Kahne never led a lap. He finished 19th and is currently 26th in point standings.
- Tony Stewart (race winner) and his team win five contingency race awards. Stewart won the 3M Lap Leader Award ($5,400) for leading 127 of the 267 lap event. He won the $5,000 American Ethanol Green Flag Restart Award for recording the fastest average speed on restarts. Stewart also won the $5,000 Mobil 1 driver of the Race Award. Crew Chief Steve Addington won the $5,000 DIRECTV Crew Chief of the Race Award. Hendrick Engines, supplier of the motor in the No. 14, won the $5,000 Mahle Clevite Engine Builder of the Race Award.
- Kevin Manion, crew chief on the No. 1 driven by Jamie McMurray wins the $5,500 Moog Problem Solver of the Race Award. The award goes to the crew chief that improves the most from first half of the race to the second half (0.302 seconds). McMurray started the race in 19th and finished in 8th. He is 25th in the points.
- Carl Edwards wins the $5,000 USG Improving the Finish Award for improving the most from start to finish. The No. 99 driver improved 16 places from 21st in the lineup to a 5th place finish. He is 6th in the standings.
NSCS Points Leader: Greg Biffle leads the point standings by 10 points over Kevin Harvick.
Next NSCS Race: Food City 500 on March 18th at Bristol Motor Speedway.
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NASCAR Nationwide Series Winner: Ricky Stenhouse Jr. wins the Sam's Town 300, his third victory in 76 NASCAR Nationwide Series races. This is the No. 6 Ford driver's first victory and second top-10 finish in 2012. It is his first victory and second top-10 finish in three races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Pole: Elliott Sadler received a $3,400 check for winning the Coors Light Pole Award at Las Vegas. He put up a 181.366 mph lap in the No. 2 Chevrolet to start up front. Sadler led 26 laps and finished 3rd.
Rookie of the Race: Cole Whitt, the No. 88 Chevrolet driver, started 22nd and finished 6th. This was ahead of the rest of the 2012 Rookie of the Year contenders. Whitt is 5th in the 2012 NNS point standings.
- Elliott Sadler won the $2,000 Mobil 1 Driver of the Race award.
- Kenny Wallace makes the most improvement in the Nationwide Series after this weekend’s race. His 11th place finish was 25 places better than his last NNS finish. This earned the No. 09 driver a $2,600 check and the Featherlite “Most Improved Driver” award. Wallace moved up 8 spots to 17th in the point standings.
- Roush Yates Engines, supplier of the engine in the No. 6 Ford driven by race winner Ricky Stenhouse Jr. wins the Mahle Clevite Engine Builder of the Race award. The $2,100 cash award is determined by qualifying and finishing position of the car.
- Ricky Stenhouse Jr. leads the most laps earning a $2,200 check as the 3M Lap Leader. The No. 6 driver started 6th; led 55 of the 200 laps run and won the race. Stenhouse is 3rd in the point standings.
NNS Points Leader: Elliott Sadler leads the point standings by 15 points over Austin Dillon.
Next NNS Race: Ford EcoBoost 300, March 17th at Bristol Motor Speedway.