Kasey Kahne Nashville Busch race recap

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Kasey Kahne, driver of the No. 38 Great Clips Dodge, finished third in Saturday's Pepsi 300 NASCAR Busch Series race at Nashville Superspeedway. While a top-five finish is impressive, the unfolding of the day's event is even more astonishing. The No. 38 Great Clips Dodge rolled off in sixth position, and almost immediately Kahne radioed in that his car felt great. He took the race lead on lap 56 and held it until the first caution flag fell on lap 59. The team made a lightning-fast pit stop and sent Kahne out with four fresh Goodyear tires and 22 gallons of Sunoco fuel. The day began looking grim as Kahne felt a vibration on lap 81. The vibration was so extreme that Kahne struggled with the handling of his Great Clips Dodge. As the team prepared for an unscheduled green-flag pit stop, which would put them a lap down from the leaders, the second caution of the day came out. The team could now pit under caution, which prevented them from going a lap down. Kahne entered pit road for four fresh tires while most of the leaders didn't pit under caution. When the race restarted on lap 89, Kahne was running in 15th position. By lap 107, Kahne had worked his way into ninth position, however, the vibration was back. Kahne's determination didn't slow down and he got as high as fifth position before the field began making green-flag pit stops on lap 136. When the caution came out on lap 142, Kahne was running in second position due to the pit stops that had currently taken place by the field of drivers. Kahne entered the pits under caution on lap 145 for four tires, air pressure and track bar adjustments. Once the race resumed, Kahne stayed consistent and took over the race lead again on lap 169. When the next caution came out on lap 214, Kahne told the crew the vibration was back and he was struggling to keep control of the car. Because the Great Clips team was forced to make an unscheduled pit stop early in the race due to the vibration, they didn't have any tires available therefore they couldn't make a pit stop. The race restarted on lap 221 with Kahne leading the field. He began to fall back because the leaders were running on fresh tires, however, on the final lap the front pack wrecked and Kahne drove through safely to finish third. "The Great Clips car was really good today," said Kahne. "The car was way better than how it was handling at the end of the race, and I think if we didn't have that vibration problem we could have won this race. We had the car to win today. I think something was wrong with the brakes because we kept changing tires and that wasn't it, so I'm thinking it had to be the brakes. The team had a hard time hearing me on the radio because I was vibrating so much. I basically had to do everything I could to keep from hitting the wall. It was out of control. "This is definitely a nice birthday present for me. We needed a strong finish here, so I'm very happy. We led some laps and gained some spots in the points, so today was a good day."
Pepsi 300 Unofficial Finish
Pos. Driver Car
1. Michael Waltrip Aaron's Chevy
2. Johnny Sauter Kleenex Pontiac
3. Kasey Kahne Great Clips Dodge
4. Clint Bowyer Reese's Chevy
5. Robby Gordon Fruit of the Loom Chevy
6. Kyle Busch Lowe's Chevy
7. Johnny Benson Miccosukee Gaming Dodge
8. Mike Bliss Rockwell Chevy
9. Jason Leffler Haas Automation Chevy
10. David Green Timberwolf Chevy

NASCAR Busch Series Unofficial Driver Standings
Pos. Driver Points
1. Michael Waltrip 1033
2. David Green 1025
3. Kyle Busch 977
4. Robby Gordon 972
5. Martin Truex Jr. 968
6. Jason Keller 924
7. Johnny Sauter 913
8. Bobby Hamilton Jr. 870
9. Tim Fedewa 862
10. Johnny Benson 829
18. Kasey Kahne 573

Next Race

Aaron's 312, Talladega Superspeedway
Saturday, April 24, 2004
2 p.m. ET
Television: FOX Radio: MRN

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