Jeff Gordon joined the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series winners’ list on Saturday night by taking the checkered flag in the 5-Hour Energy 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway near Kansas City, Kan.
“I knew we had a fast race car,” Gordon ssaid. “We’ve had fast cars all year.”
Gordon made up ground on previous race leader Kevin Harvick during the final cycle of green-flag pit stops that got underway with about 30 laps to go and, therefore, was in the lead after Brad Keselowski, the last to stop with nine to go, hit pit road. He was then able to hold off Harvick in the closing laps to claim the win. Harvick wound up second.
“Kevin was tough,” Gordon said. “He had a really fast car. I didn’t know if I was going to be able to hold him off.
Harvick dominated the first half of the race, leading 90 laps before a caution on lap 110, just after he had made a green-flag pit stop mired him back in the field. He eventually made his way back up to the lead soon after a restart following a caution with 65 laps to go and remained up front until Gordon was able to beat him off of pit road.
“In the end, I ran out of gas coming down pit road,” Harvick said.
Harvick was able to close on Gordon in the final laps, but ran out of time.
“I found a groove that worked for me,” Harvick said. “Got loose with about 10 to go and lost the ground I made up, but I got it back.”
Kasey Kahne posted his first top-five of the year, finishing third. Joey Logano was fourth, and Sale Earnhardt Jr. fifth. Carl Edwards finished sixth, and Danica Patrick posted a career-best finish of seventh. Aric Almirola was eighth, Jimmie Johnson ninth, and Matt Kenseth rounded out the top-10.
– Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images