Brad Keselowski won for the second time in three weeks in NASCAR's Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship and leads the standings.
DOVER, Del. — Brad Keselowski had fuel to spare for a couple of victory burnouts.
Those few splashes of gas left down the stretch were enough for a checkered flag — and a sign Keselowski is among the favorites in NASCAR’s Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship.
With other contenders battling fuel woes and limping toward pit road, Keselowski prevailed Sunday at Dover International Speedway for his second victory in three weeks. He took the Chase lead from Jimmie Johnson, who finished fourth in the AAA 400 and is five points behind with seven races left.
“I can’t state loudly enough how much longer this battle is,” Keselowski said after his fifth victory of the season.
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Keselowski had an average finish of 17th in five previous Dover starts.
“This has been one of my worst tracks,” he said. “I ran up front all day. I may not have had the best car, but hung around in that top five, just creeping around, and when you do that, you put yourself in position for good things to happen.”
Crew chief Paul Wolfe conceded the car was “within a lap or two” of running on fumes. Keselowski raced the last 89 laps without a stop.
Jeff Gordon finished second, 1.078 seconds behind Keselowski, and Mark Martin was third.
Kasey Kahne of Enumclaw was 15th, one place in front of Greg Biffle of Vancouver, Wash. Kahne is sixth in the 12-driver Chase and Biffle is 11th.
Johnson and Denny Hamlin each led a chunk of laps on the mile concrete oval, but failed to stretch their fuel to the end. Hamlin pitted with 10 laps left and wound up eighth after starting from the pole.
“They’re not going to beat us on the track, that’s just plain and simple,” Hamlin said. “We’re just too fast right now and I feel like everything is going well.”
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