Anthony Ballantoni


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Wrap-up: Daytona

Sunday, July 8, 2012

This past weekend, Daytona International Speedway hosted two NASCAR premier series. The ‘World Center of Racing’ in Daytona Beach, Florida was the venue for Friday night’s Nationwide Series Subway Jalapeno 250 and Saturday night’s Sprint Cup Coke Zero 400. The Camping World Truck Series will return to action on Saturday, July 14th, for the American Ethanol 200 at Iowa Speedway.

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series

Time Trials

Matt Kenseth received a $3,400 check for winning the Coors Light Pole Award. He put up a lap of 192.386 mph to start up front. This is the No. 17 Ford driver's eighth pole in 454 NSCS races. It is his first pole and seventh top-ten start in 2012. This is Kenseth's first pole in 26 races at Daytona. He led a race high 89 lap, finished third and continues to lead the 2012 NSCS point standings.

Did Not Qualify:
No. 23 Robert Richardson Jr.

Race Winner:
Tony Stewart won the Coke Zero 400, his 47th victory in 482 NSCS races. With the victory, Stewart moves into sole possession of 14th on the all-time list. He had previously been tied with NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Buck Baker. This is the No. 14 Chevrolet driver's third victory and ninth top-ten finish in 2012. This is his fourth victory and 13th top-ten finish in 28 races at Daytona. It is his 18th victory all-time at Daytona International Speedway, second-most all-time to Dale Earnhardt. Stewart moved up four spots to fifth in the 2012 point standings.

Contingency Awards:
- Matt Kenseth won the $5,400 3M Lap Leader Award for leading the most laps (89 of 160). Kenseth started the No. 17 Ford on the pole and finished the race in third.
- Roush Yates Engines won the $5,000 Mahle Clevite Engine Builder of the Race award (Kenseth’s No. 17).
- Joey Logano won the $5,000 American Ethanol Green Flag Restart award for recording the fastest average speed on restarts and finishing the race on the lead lap. Logano started the No. 20 Toyota 19th in the lineup and finished fourth. He moved up two spots to 14th in the standings.
- Kenseth’s crew chief, Jimmy Fennig, won the DIRECTV Crew Chief of the Race award. The $5,000 cash award is presented to the crew chief of the driver who demonstrates the best qualifying and race finish for each event.
- Steve Addington, crew chief on the No. 14 Chevrolet driven by Tony Stewart wins the Moog Problem Solver of the Race award. The $5,500 award goes to the crew chief that improves the most from first half of the race to the second half utilizing the 40 best lap times (improved 0.047 seconds).
- Tony Stewart won the $5,000 USG Improving the Finish Award which goes to the driver who improves the most from start to finish. He improved 41 places from 42nd in the lineup to win the event.
- Tony Stewart won the $5,000 Mobil 1 Command Performance Driver of the Race award given to the winner of the race or the next-highest finishing driver displaying the Mobil 1 decal.

Points Leader:
Matt Kenseth leads the point standings by 25 points over Dale Earnhardt Jr.

NSCS Top 12 (G/L):
1. Matt Kenseth 0
2. Dale Earnhardt Jr. 0
3. Greg Biffle +1
4. Jimmie Johnson -1
5. Tony Stewart +4
6. Kevin Harvick 0
7. Denny Hamlin -2
8. Martin Truex Jr. 0
9. Brad Keselowski +1
10. Clint Bowyer -3
11. Carl Edwards 0
12. Kyle Busch 0

Next NSCS Race:
Lenox Industrial Tools 301, July 15th, at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

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NASCAR Nationwide Series

Time Trials:

Austin Dillon won the Coors Light Pole Award for the Nationwide Series Subway Jalapeno 250 with a lap of 50.750 seconds, 177.340 mph. However, his qualifying speed was disallowed for an open cooling hose found under the cockpit (thought to provide the car with an aerodynamic advantage). Further penalties are possible for the No. 3 Chevrolet team early next week. Second fastest qualifier, the No. 6 Ford driver, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. became the pole winner of record earning the $3,400 check for the Coors Light Pole Award. Dillon had to start the race in 42nd place and he finished fourth. Stenhouse finished the race in second place and is currently third in the 2012 NNS point standings.

Did Not Qualify:
NONE, only 43 cars entered.

Race Winner:
Sprint Cup regular Kurt Busch won the Subway Jalapeno 250, his fifth victory in 23 Nationwide Series races. This is the No. 1 Chevrolet driver's second victory and 10th top-10 finish in 2012. It is his first victory and second top-10 finish in two NNS races at Daytona. Busch is ineligible for driver points in this series.

Rookie of the Race:
Austin Dillon, the No. 3 Chevrolet driver, started 42nd (after having his pole winning qualifying lap disallowed) and finished fourth. This was ahead of the rest of the 2012 Rookie of the Year contenders earning him the Sunoco Rookie of the Race award. Dillon is currently second in the point standings.

Contingency Awards:
- Blake Koch makes the most improvement in the series since his 19th place finish 22 places better than his last NNS finish. This earned the No. 82 Dodge driver a $2,600 check and the Featherlite “Most Improved Driver” award. Koch, who made 13 of the 16 races so far this season, is currently 25th in the point standings.
- Austin Dillon won the $2,000 Mobil 1 Driver of the Race award for his fourth place finish.
- Kurt Busch won the $2,200 3M Lap Leader award for leading the most laps (23 of 101).
- Hendrick Engines (Kurt Busch’s No. 1) won the $2,100 Mahle Clevite Engine Builder of the Race award.

Points Leader:
Elliott Sadler leads the point standings by two points over No. 3 Chevrolet driver Austin Dillon.

NNS Top 10 (G/L):
1. Elliott Sadler 0
2. Austin Dillon 0
3. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. 0
4. Sam Hornish Jr. 0
5. Justin Allgaier 0
6. Michael Annett +1
7. Cole Whitt -1
8. Mike Bliss 0
9. Danica Patrick 0
10. Tayler Malsam +2

Next NNS Race:
F.W. Webb 200, Saturday, July 14th, at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

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NASCAR Camping World Truck Series:

Next NCWTS Race:

American Ethanol 200, Saturday, July 14th, at Iowa Speedway.

Tony Ballantoni runs the NASCAR coverage at
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