The 2013 Chase for the Sprint Cup moves to Kansas Speedway for this Sunday’s Hollywood Casino 400, the fourth race in the 10-race post-season. Joe Gibbs Racing driver Matt Kenseth, sitting on top of the Chase standings through three races, hopes to add to that lead with continued good luck at the 1.5-mile track.
Kenseth, running the No. 20 Dollar General Toyota Camry this weekend in the Cup Series, has nine top 10 finishes in 15 races at Kansas, including two wins in his last two visits to the track. In April, Kenseth won from the pole after setting a new track record (191.864 mph/28.145 seconds). He’ll also be racing in the Nationwide Series Kansas Lottery 300, driving the No. 18 Reser’s Toyota Camry on Saturday; Kenseth has five top 10 finishes in six previous Nationwide Series starts at Kansas as well as two poles.
Kyle Busch slipped back to third in the points standings in spite of a strong fifth-place run. The driver of the No. 18 M&Ms Toyota hasn’t had the best of luck historically at Kansas – he has just two top 10 finishes in 12 races there – but had the second-best 10-lap average in Thursday’s test sessions at Kansas. To gain more seat time, he’ll also be back in the No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota in the Nationwide Series; he’s had better luck in that series at Kansas, with six top 10 finishes, including a win, in eight races.
Denny Hamlin, in the No. 11 FedEx Office Toyota this weekend, has one win and three top 10 finishes in 10 races at Kansas; he missed the spring race at Kansas while recovering from a back injury.
Joining Kenseth and Busch in the Nationwide Series race on Saturday are JGR regulars Elliott Sadler and Brian Vickers. Sadler, in the No. 11 SportClips Toyota, has two top five finishes in three Nationwide Series races at Kansas, and also has three top 10 finishes in 11 Cup Series races there. Vickers, in the No. 20 Dollar General Toyota, has two top 10 finishes in five Nationwide Series starts at Kansas, and also has a top 10 finish in the Cup Series; Vickers will also race Sunday in the Cup Series race for Michael Waltrip Racing.
Qualifying for the Hollywood Casino 400 takes place Friday at 4:10 p.m. CT, with the race going green on Sunday at 1 p.m. CT. Qualifying for the Kansas Lottery 300 takes place Saturday at 11:05 p.m. CT, followed by the green flag at 2:30 p.m. CT. Keep up with the action at www.nascar.com and joegibbsracing.com.
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