Jimmie Johnson won the showdown at the Texas Motor Speedway on Saturday night after leading nine different times for 128 laps. Johnson captured his 72nd career Sprint Cup Series victory and his second of the year after starting from fifth.
Johnson felt the off weekend helped the team a lot. “The end results don’t show it but the great support from our fans, our sponsors…..Gatorade as well and Kobalt Tools,” said Johnson after the race. “We just kept plugging at it and I think the off-week was good for us to sit down and relax, reboot and come back to the track and they brought me a fast race car that was good all weekend.”
Kevin Harvick also led nine different times throughout the night after battling Johnson for the lead all day. Harvick barely beat Dale Earnhardt Jr. for the runner-up spot after getting into the wall with two laps remaining while racing Johnson for the lead. The 39-year old finished 1.108 seconds behind the race winner for his sixth top five finish in 2015.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. came home in third after improving over the course of the race. Earnhardt had some work to do when the green flag started the event after qualifying 25th on Friday. The third-place run marked his fourth top five finish of the year in his No. 88 Nationwide Insurance Chevrolet.
“I still had Jimmie behind me at that point and I should have pulled up in front of Kevin and made it a little more difficult on him,” said Earnhardt Jr. after the race. “We weren’t as good as the 48 or the 4 early in the race, but we definitely improved it and Greg (Ives, crew chief) and the Nationwide team did a great job in getting it better.”
Earnhardt continued, saying the team has had speed all season. “We have had that speed all year and it’s good to get a good finish in the bank because these last few weeks have been pretty rough, but we know what we are capable of. Greg and I are just getting started here and we are right there on their heels man. If we ever get this thing figured out – it’s going to be tough.”
Joey Logano, who won this event last year at the Texas Motor Speedway, will take home a fourth-place finish. Logano led 19 laps throughout the race after starting in sixth. While trying to keep hard charging Kevin Harvick behind him, Logano got tagged and lost several spots. Logano was cool about the incident after the race, saying he was doing his best to keep him from passing his No. 22 Ford.
Martin Truex Jr. will continue the top 10 finishing streak after a seventh-place finish at the Texas Motor Speedway. Driving for Furniture Row Racing, Truex has taken his No. 78 Chevrolet to a top 10 in each of the seven races so far in 2015.
Kurt Busch, who started the Duck Commander 500 from the pole, will take a 14th-place finish back home to the state of North Carolina. Busch led three different times throughout the 500-mile event.The next race for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will be at the Bristol Motor Speedway. Coverage will begin at 1:00 p.m. Et. on FOX. The Performance Racing Network will carry the live radio broadcast of the event.