To say that today’s Sprint Cup Windows 10 400 at Pocono Raceway was chaotic would be the understatement of the year. After racking up seven cautions in the first 72 laps alone, the race ran long and nuttier than usual. Watch how it ended: with cars everywhere dropping like flies from running out of fuel.
Perhaps the high number of cautions threw everybody’s fuel calculations off, but many teams took a gamble on fuel that didn’t pay off at the very end.
With three laps to go, it looked like Joey Logano might’ve been able to keep Kyle Busch from geting a coveted fourth win in a row to claim his first Pocono Sprint Cup win since 2012. As soon as Logano started to shake his car in hopes of jiggling fuel up into the pickup, everyone knew it was over. There was no way that car would make it. Joey (provisionally) finished 20th.
This could have been such a lucky break for Kyle Busch, who wasn’t just looking to get that fourth consecutive win, but also needs to hop up into 30th place or higher to get into the Chase for the Sprint Cup. He sits only 23 points out of contention for the season playoffs fun despite having four wins, all thanks to a leg injury that caused him to miss the beginning of the year. Could this be the day Busch makes it into the Chase?
NOPE! Busch, too, starts wiggling on the first turn of the very last lap and soon goes down an access road because he knew he was done. He (provisionally) finished the race at a sad, empty 21st, short of making it in to the Chase.
It’s going to happen, provided Kyle Busch doesn’t just decide to sit out the next few races. There will be a Kyle in the Chase, as there should be after the dude won four races in one season. It’s just not going to happen today.
Kenseth then took the win as other cars behind him also ran out of fuel. It’s obvious that they were on the right fuel strategy, as he even had enough to make big, voluptuous clouds of smoke at the end of the race.
Is there anything more beautiful than a car-enveloping cloud of donut smoke? No. I don’t think there is.
According to USA Today’s Jeff Gluck, Kenseth was joking that this was the first fuel mileage victory of his NASCAR career.
Photo credits: Getty Images
Contact the author at email@example.com.