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Joe Gibbs Racing: 2014 Federated Auto Parts 400 weekend preview

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The Sprint Cup Series gets “One Last Race to Make the Chase” this Saturday night at Richmond International Raceway. Joe Gibbs Racing drivers Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin each have a win and a spot locked up in the Chase for the Sprint Cup, and Matt Kenseth is currently in on points, but would surely rather get in with his first win of the season. The Nationwide Series is also on the race card this weekend at RIR, competing in the Virginia 529 College Savings 250 on Friday night.

Virginia native Hamlin, in the No. 11 FedEx Express Toyota Camry, has two wins and nine top 10 finishes in 16 races at Richmond, with the wins coming in the fall races in 2009 and 2010. Hamlin earned his 2014 win at Talladega Superspeedway in May.

Busch, in the No. 18 M&Ms American Heritage Chocolate Toyota on Saturday night, has four wins and 14 top 10 finishes in 19 starts at RIR, having won four straight spring races from 2009 to 2012. Busch earned his lone Cup Series win at Auto Club Raceway in Fontana in March. In Friday night’s Nationwide Series race, Busch will be behind the wheel of the No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota Camry, also having four Nationwide Series wins and 15 top 10 finishes in 18 races at the track. Busch last won at Richmond in the September race in 2011.

Kenseth, in the No. 20 Dollar General Toyota on Saturday night, has yet to get a win this season after a career-best seven wins last year. Kenseth has one win and 13 top 10 finishes in 29 starts in the Cup Series, that win coming in the fall race in 2002. Kenseth will also be in the No. 20 GameStop/Evolve Toyota on Friday night, a series in which he has 16 top 10 finishes in 20 starts, but remains winless.

Virginia native Elliott Sadler joins Busch and Kenseth in the Nationwide Series race on Friday night at Richmond, a track where he has nine top 10 finishes in 22 starts in the series. Sadler sits fourth in Nationwide Series points, 48 points behind leader Chase Elliott and 13 points back of third-place Ty Dillon.

Qualifying for the Virginia 529 College Savings 250 Nationwide Series race is Friday at 3:45 p.m. ET, followed by the green flag at 7:30 p.m. ET. Qualifying for the Federated Auto Parts 400 Cup Series race is Friday at 5:45 p.m. ET, with the race going green at 7:30 p.m. ET Saturday night. Keep up with the action at joegibbsracing.com.

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