JGR Race Report - Bank of America 500

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Date: Oct. 14, 2006
Event: Bank of America 500 (Round 31 of 36)
Series: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series
Location: Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway (1.5-mile oval)
Winner: Kasey Kahne of Evernham Motorsports
JGR Finish: Tony Stewart (13th - Running, completed 333 of 334 laps); Denny Hamlin (28th - Running, completed 265 of 334 laps); J.J. Yeley (29th - Accident, completed 258 of 334 laps) Tony Stewart led the three-car Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) contingent at Charlotte (N.C.) by finishing 13th in Saturday night's Bank of America 500 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race. For Stewart, driver of the No. 20 Home Depot Chevrolet, it was a hard-earned top-15 result, as he came from 31st in the 43-car field. Denny Hamlin, driver of the No. 11 FedEx Kinkos Chevrolet, finished 28th, while J.J. Yeley, driver of the No. 18 Interstate Batteries Chevrolet, finished 29th. Both drivers were involved in accidents that curtailed their performances. Hamlin was hit from behind in a nine-car accident on the frontstretch on just the second lap of the 334-lap race. Yeley encountered trouble much later in the race when on lap 242 he made contact with Mark Martin and then Robby Gordon in an attempt to come to pit road. Hamlin's crew was able to make repairs and finish the race, albeit 29 laps down. Yeley's crew also made repairs following his incident, but after making a handful of laps, retired from the event. Hamlin continues to lead the trio of JGR drivers in the championship point standings, as he is the lone JGR representative in the Chase for the Championship. Hamlin dropped one spot to sixth in points, 137 markers behind series leader Jeff Burton. Stewart maintained his 11th-place point standing and holds a healthy 213-point lead over 12th-place Carl Edwards. Yeley dropped one position to 28th in points and sits 251 points outside the top-25. JGR's satellite team - Hall of Fame Racing - enjoyed a strong showing at Charlotte. Tony Raines, driver of the No. 96 DLP HDTV Chevrolet, finished seventh to notch his second career top-10 finish and his first this season. It was the team's 18th top-25 finish of the year, bumping the first-year outfit up three spots in car owner points to 28th, 77 points behind the 25th-place No. 38 Robert Yates Racing Team. Kasey Kahne scored his seventh career Nextel Cup victory and his series-leading sixth win of the season by winning the Bank of America 500. The win gave him a sweep of this year's Nextel Cup races at Charlotte, as Kahne won the Coca-Cola 600 in May. Jimmie Johnson finished second, while Burton, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and former JGR driver Bobby Labonte secured the rest of the top-five. Kyle Busch, Raines, Edwards, Joe Nemechek and Brian Vickers comprised the rest of the top-10. With only five races remaining, the next event on the Nextel Cup schedule is the Oct. 22 Subway 500 at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway. The race begins at 12:55 p.m. EDT with live, high-definition coverage provided by NBC.

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