2008 Dan Lowry 400 Race Review

Dan Lowry 400 Review
by Virginia Vroom of Predictem.com

Who Won?: Clint Bowyer

This weekend at Richmond had to be one of the best races that I have seen with the car of tomorrow. There was no shortage of beatin and bangin, and we certainly would expect no less for a short track race. Richmond has a history of creating long-lasting feuds between drivers as well. This weekend may be no different.

The biggest story is, of course, the wreck of Dale Jr. In the closing laps of the race, Jr. and Kyle Busch were racing hard all the way around the track. They slid off each others fenders and gave the fans quite a show. The problem occurred when coming out of turns 3 and 4, Kyle Busch appeared to get loose and rode up on Jr., who was riding the high side. Busch inevitably put Jr. in the wall, ending his day. It was quite a disappointment as Jr. had every chance to win this race and to end his 71 race winless streak. The irony is that this is the last race that Jr. has won, winning back in 2006.

Obviously, Jr. nation is infuriated, and to an extent, rightly so. Jr. probably should have won that race. The problem lies in the fact that Jr. was continuously riding the high side, giving Busch the ability to get runs on the bottom. The fastest way around any short track is on the low side. Its hard, as an objective reporter, to say that the fault of that wreck belonged solely to any one of the two. On the one hand, Jr. was racing clean, but may have actually slid down on Busch ever so slightly, but enough to catch a rub on his fender. On the other hand, Busch was running on the low side and racing Jr. clean as well to this point. It looked as though Buschs wheels turned to the top of the track at one point, indicating that he was losing control of his cars handling in the corners. What it comes down to is a racing incident that required Richmond security to escort Kyle Busch off the premises for his own safety.

The whole problem that I have with this incident is not even with Jr. or Busch. Its with Denny Hamlin. He had the audacity to cause a caution when his tire was going down even though he had plenty of opportunity to safely and easily get off the track and onto pit road without incident. On the front stretch, Hamlin clearly slowed to an almost stop until the caution came out. He then proceeded to get up to speed with no problem. He did this because there was more than a second lead between Jr. and Hamlins teammate, Busch. Busch was obviously able to catch up on the restart.

Karma ended up catching Busch in the last lap. He held off Mark Martin for second, but had more beer cans than Jr. did when he was sponsored by Bud! The fans went nuts and threw beer cans over the catch fence during a late caution period. Clearly, Kyle Busch was not a top choice for the night. Clint Bowyer ended up catching the checkers.

Your top ten finishers for the race are as follows:

1. Clint Bowyer
2. Kyle Busch
3. Mark Martin
4. Tony Stewart
5. Martin Truex Jr.
6. Ryan Newman
7. Carl Edwards
8. Kevin Harvick
9. Jeff Gordon
10. Kasey Kahne

As for the other Hendrick cars this week, it was, again, a bit of a disappointment. Gordon posted a solid top ten, but not after much agony throughout the night. Johnson faded and was caught up in the 14-car melee that happened on lap 230. Mears got into an incident with Michael Waltrip. Waltrip was unhappy and decided it would be a good idea to rev the engine, kick it into gear, and proceed to push Mears car down the straightaway. NASCAR probably wont be too fond of that one, Michael.

Anyway, there has been a bit of movement within the top 12. Montoya fell out and Kahne moved in. The rest of the top twelve is as follows:

1. Kyle Busch
2. Jeff Burton
3. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
4. Clint Bowyer
5. Kevin Harvick
6. Denny Hamlin
7. Jimmie Johnson
8. Tony Stewart
9. Greg Biffle
10. Carl Edwards
11. Ryan Newman
12. Kasey Kahne

With all of this excitement, Id look forward to the preview this week for the Darlington race. Its going to be another Saturday night race, so be sure to stay tuned. With all of the drama this weekend, I wouldnt be surprised to see some tempers fly Saturday.