Tony Stewart lost his pole position and will start from the back of the pack after wrecking his car during practice for the Pennsylvania 500 yesterday in Long Pond, Pa.
Stewart lost control of his No. 14 Chevrolet on a turn on the second lap of yesterday’s first practice and spun into the wall. He was unhurt in the crash.
His Stewart-Haas Racing crew quickly got to work on the backup. Stewart leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series points standings and was the pole-sitter at Pocono because rain washed out Friday’s qualifying.
“I just screwed up,’’ Stewart said. “I got in too deep and got loose and couldn’t save it.’’
The same scenario happened to Stewart in June’s race at Pocono when he took the pole after a rainout and wrecked in practice. Then he went out and won on Sunday in his backup from the rear of the field. He’ll have to pass 42 cars again today to duplicate the feat.
“I know we can do it,’’ Stewart said. “I tore up a really good race car today.’’
Stewart, 192 points ahead of Jimmie Johnson in the standings, is one of four drivers to win a Cup race this season from the rear of the field. He’s trying to become the third driver since 2004 to sweep the two Pocono races
Nationwide - The inaugural Nationwide Series race at Iowa Speedway came down to a two-man battle between points leader Kyle Busch and top series regular Brad Keselowski.
In a twist that’s becoming all too common for Busch, he was forced to settle for yet another second-place finish. This time, it was Keselowski who pulled off the victory with a gutsy move down the stretch.
Keselowski passed Busch with eight laps left and held on to register his fourth career Nationwide win. Keselowski stayed on the track during a caution flag late in the race, a risk that paid off with his second victory of the year.
Keselowski also won at Dover May 30, in addition to a Sprint Cup Series victory at Talladega in April.
“I couldn’t have asked for a better finish,’’ Keselowski said. “It’s lot more fun to say I beat Kyle heads-up. That means a lot to me.’’
Busch, who started at the back after spending the morning in Pennsylvania practicing for the Sprint Cup race today at Pocono, led for 84 laps. He has nine consecutive top-two finishes, tying the series record set by Jack Ingram in 1983.
Busch wasn’t thrilled about such a distinction. It was the fourth time in five Nationwide races that Busch finished second, though he still has a 207-point edge over Carl Edwards in the season points race. Jason Leffler was third, followed by Edwards.
IndyCar - Ryan Briscoe slipped past Ed Carpenter in the final yards to win the Kentucky 300.
Briscoe’s Penske Racing Honda had just enough momentum coming off the final turn to hold off Carpenter, who is winless in 94 career starts.
Briscoe picked up his second win of the year and moved into the series points lead ahead of Scott Dixon and Dario Franchitti. Dixon started from the pole and dominated the first half of the race but faded to finish seventh. Tony Kanaan was third, followed by Helio Castroneves and Graham Rahal.
Carpenter, who had led all of four laps during his entire career before last night, took the lead with about 45 laps to go.
Briscoe pulled even with about 10 laps to go, starting a thrilling duel around the 1 1/2-mile oval. On the final lap Carpenter did his best to swing his No. 20 Vision Racing Honda as far up the track as he could. It wasn’t enough to keep Briscoe from nipping him at the line. Briscoe won by .0162 seconds, the closest finish in the race’s 10-year history.