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NASCAR - Sprint Cup - Coke Zero 400 Preview

From The Sports Network

 
DATE: Saturday, July 2nd
SITE: Daytona International Speedway (1959) -- Daytona Beach, Florida
TRACK: 2.5-mile tri-oval - 3,800 feet (Frontstretch); 3,000 feet (Backstretch)
ANNUAL: 53rd
CAPACITY: 146,000 (Grandstand Seating)
TELEVISION: TNT
ANNOUNCERS: Adam Alexander, Wally Dallenbach Jr, Kyle Petty
RADIO: Motor Racing Network (MRN)/SIRIUS NASCAR Radio
START TIME: 7:30 p.m. (et)
DEFENDING CHAMPION: Kevin Harvick
RUNNER-UP: Kasey Kahne
POLE WINNER: Kevin Harvick (Finished 1st)
LAPS: 160
MILES: 400
QUALIFYING RECORD: Bill Elliott, 1987 (210.364 m.p.h.)
RACE RECORD: Bobby Allison, 1980 (173.473 m.p.h.)
TOTAL PURSE: $6,147,546 (2010 figures)
PAYOUTS: 1st Place - $344,751; 2nd Place - $239,440; 3rd Place - $212,176
 
2010 Finish
FinishDriverStartFinishDriverStart
1Kevin Harvick16Carl Edwards12
2Kasey Kahne207Kurt Busch6
3Jeff Gordon58Reed Sorenson24
4Dale Earnhardt Jr139Mike Bliss35
5Jeff Burton810Scott Speed27
2010 Coke Zero 400 Facts and Figures
AVERAGE SPEED: 135,719 m.p.h.
TIME OF RACE: 3 hours, 3 minutes, 18 seconds
MARGIN OF VICTORY: 0.092 second
CAUTION FLAGS: 9 for 37 laps
LEAD CHANGES: 47 among 18 drivers
POLE WINNER: Kevin Harvick (2010 owner points)
Past Coke Zero 400 Winners (Starting Position) Car -- Speed
2010 -- Kevin Harvick (1st) -- Chevrolet -- 135.719 m.p.h.
2009 -- Tony Stewart (1st) -- Chevrolet -- 142.461 m.p.h.
2008 -- Kyle Busch (9th) -- Toyota -- 138.554 m.p.h.
2007 -- Jamie McMurray (15th) -- Ford -- 138.983 m.p.h.
2006 -- Tony Stewart (2nd) -- Chevrolet -- 153.143 m.p.h.
2005 -- Tony Stewart (1st) -- Chevrolet -- 131.016 m.p.h.
2004 -- Jeff Gordon (1st) -- Chevrolet -- 145.117 m.p.h.
2003 -- Greg Biffle (30th) -- Ford -- 166.109 m.p.h.
2002 -- Michael Waltrip (17th) -- Chevrolet -- 135.952 m.p.h.
2001 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr (13th) -- Chevrolet -- 157.601 m.p.h.
2000 -- Jeff Burton (9th) -- Ford -- 148.576 m.p.h.
1999 -- Dale Jarrett (12th) -- Ford -- 169.213 m.p.h.
1998 -- Jeff Gordon (8th) -- Chevrolet -- 144.549 m.p.h.
1997 -- John Andretti (3rd) -- Ford -- 157.791 m.p.h.
1996 -- Sterling Marlin (2nd) -- Chevrolet -- 161.602 m.p.h.
1995 -- Jeff Gordon (3rd) -- Chevrolet -- 166.976 m.p.h.
1994 -- Jimmy Spencer (3rd) -- Ford -- 155.558 m.p.h.
1993 -- Dale Earnhardt (5th) -- Chevrolet -- 151.755 m.p.h.
1992 -- Ernie Irvan (6th) -- Chevrolet -- 170.457 m.p.h.
1991 -- Bill Elliott (10th) -- Ford -- 159.116 m.p.h.
1990 -- Dale Earnhardt (3rd) -- Chevrolet -- 160.894 m.p.h.
1989 -- Davey Allison (8th) -- Ford -- 132.207 m.p.h.
1988 -- Bill Elliott (38th) -- Ford-- 163.302 m.p.h.
1987 -- Bobby Allison (11th) -- Buick -- 161.074 m.p.h.
1986 -- Tim Richmond (9th) -- Chevrolet -- 131.916 m.p.h.
1985 -- Greg Sacks (9th) -- Chevrolet -- 158.730 m.p.h.
1984 -- Richard Petty (6th) -- Pontiac -- 171.204 m.p.h.
1983 -- Buddy Baker (8th) -- Ford -- 167.442 m.p.h.
1982 -- Bobby Allison (9th) -- Buick -- 163.099 m.p.h.
1981 -- Cale Yarborough (1st) -- Buick -- 142.588 m.p.h.
1980 -- Bobby Allison (14th) -- Buick -- 173.473 m.p.h. (race record)
1979 -- Neil Bonnett (2nd) -- Mercury -- 172.890 m.p.h.
1978 -- David Pearson (3rd) -- Mercury -- 154.340 m.p.h.
1977 -- Richard Petty (5th) -- Dodge -- 142.716 m.p.h.
1976 -- Cale Yarborough (2nd) -- Chevrolet -- 160.966 m.p.h.
1975 -- Richard Petty (13th) -- Dodge -- 158.381 m.p.h.
1974 -- David Pearson (1st) -- Mercury -- 138.301 m.p.h.
1973 -- David Pearson (6th) -- Mercury -- 158.468 m.p.h.
1972 -- David Pearson (2nd) -- Mercury -- 160.821 m.p.h.
1971 -- Bobby Isaac (21st) -- Dodge -- 161.947 m.p.h.
1970 -- Donnie Allison (15th) -- Ford -- 162.235 m.p.h.
1969 -- LeeRoy Yarborough (9th) -- Ford)-- 160.875 m.p.h.
1968 -- Cale Yarborough (4th) -- Mercury -- 167.247 m.p.h.
1967 -- Cale Yarborough (2nd) -- Ford -- 143.583 m.p.h.
1966 -- Sam McQuagg (4th) -- Dodge -- 153.813 m.p.h.
1965 -- A.J. Foyt (11th) -- Ford -- 150.046 m.p.h.
1964 -- A.J. Foyt (19th) -- Dodge -- 151.451 m.p.h.
1963 -- Fireball Roberts (3rd) -- Ford -- 150.927 m.p.h.
1962 -- Fireball Roberts (4th) -- Pontiac -- 153.688 m.p.h.
1961 -- David Pearson (2nd) -- Pontiac -- 154.294 m.p.h.
1960 -- Jack Smith (1st) -- Pontiac -- 146.842 m.p.h.
1959 -- Fireball Roberts (1st) -- Pontiac -- 140.581 m.p.h.
 
NOTE: Formerly called Firecracker 250 (1959-1962), Firecracker 400 (1963-83),
Pepsi Firecracker 400 (1984-88), Pepsi 400 (1989-2007). Race changed
from 250 miles to 400 (1963).
 
Past Coke Zero 400 Pole Winners (Finish)
2010 -- None -- Weather
2009 -- None -- Weather
2008 -- Paul Menard -- 15th
2007 -- None -- Weather
2006 -- Boris Said -- 4th
2005 -- Tony Stewart -- 1st
2004 -- Jeff Gordon -- 1st
2003 -- Steve Park -- 39th
2002 -- Kevin Harvick -- 11th
2001 -- Sterling Marlin -- 39th
2000 -- Dale Jarrett -- 2nd
1999 -- Joe Nemechek -- 16th
1998 -- Bobby Labonte -- 2nd
1997 -- Mike Skinner -- 41st
1996 -- Jeff Gordon -- 3rd
1995 -- Dale Earnhardt -- 3rd
1994 -- Dale Earnhardt -- 3rd
1993 -- Ernie Irvan -- 7th
1992 -- Sterling Marlin -- 2nd
1991 -- Sterling Marlin -- 8th
1990 -- Greg Sacks -- 37th
1989 -- Mark Martin -- 16th
1988 -- Darrell Waltrip -- 5th
1987 -- Davey Allison -- 20th
1986 -- Cale Yarborough -- 17th
1985 -- Bill Elliott -- 2nd
1984 -- Cale Yarborough -- 3rd
1983 -- Cale Yarborough -- 40th
1982 -- Geoffrey Bodine -- 6th
1981 -- Cale Yarborough -- 1st
1980 -- Cale Yarborough -- 40th
1979 -- Buddy Baker -- 34th
1978 -- Cale Yarborough -- 2nd
1977 -- Neil Bonnett -- 8th
1976 -- A.J. Foyt -- 4th
1975 -- Donnie Allison -- 5th
1974 -- David Pearson -- 1st
1973 -- Bobby Allison -- 30th
1972 -- Bobby Isaac -- 27th
1971 -- Donnie Allison -- 5th
1970 -- Cale Yarborough -- 35th
1969 -- Cale Yarborough -- 37th
1968 -- Charlie Glotzbach -- 9th
1967 -- Darel Dieringer -- 3rd
1966 -- LeeRoy Yarbrough -- 24th
1965 -- Marvin Panch -- 12th
1964 -- Darel Dieringer -- 9th
1963 -- Junior Johnson -- 17th
1962 -- Banjo Matthews -- 21st
1961 -- Fireball Roberts -- 5th
1960 -- Jack Smith -- 1st
1959 -- Fireball Roberts -- 1st
Last Race Results
RACE: Toyota/Save Mart 350 (June 26th)
SITE: Infineon Raceway -- Sonoma, California
MILES: 218.9
LAPS: 110
WINNER: Kurt Busch
RUNNER-UP: Jeff Gordon
THIRD: Carl Edwards
FOURTH: Clint Bowyer
FIFTH: Marcos Ambrose
POLE WINNER: Joey Logano (Finished 6th)
TIME OF RACE: 2 hours, 54 minutes, 10 seconds
AVERAGE SPEED: 75.411 m.p.h.
MARGIN OF VICTORY: 2.685 seconds
CAUTION FLAGS: 5 for 17 laps
LEAD CHANGES: 12 among 9 drivers
LAP LEADERS: J. Logano 1-5; D. Hamlin 6-12; Kurt Busch 13-31; D. Hamlin 32-36;
Kurt Busch 37-50; C. Bowyer 51; Kurt Busch 52-71; T. Stewart
72-74; J. Montoya 75-76; D. Gilliland 77; K. Harvick 78-82; R.
Smith 83-87; Kurt Busch 88-110.
Coke Zero 400 Entry List
CarDriver, HometownCar/Name
00David Reutimann (Zephyrhills, FL)Toyota/Aaron's Dream Machine
1Jamie McMurray (Joplin, MO)Chevrolet/McDonald's
2Brad Keselowski (Rochester Hills, MI)Dodge/Miller Lite
4Kasey Kahne (Enumclaw, WA)Toyota/Red Bull
5Mark Martin (Batesville, AR)Chevrolet/GoDaddy.com/Carquest
6David Ragan (Unadilla, GA)Ford/UPS
7Robby Gordon (Orange, CA)Dodge/Speed Energy
9Marcos Ambrose (Launceston, Australia)Ford/DeWalt
11Denny Hamlin (Chesterfield, VA)Toyota/FedEx Express
13Casey Mears (Bakersfield, CA)Toyota/GEICO
14Tony Stewart (Columbus, IN)Chevrolet/Burger King
16Greg Biffle (Vancouver, WA)Ford/3M
17Matt Kenseth (Cambridge, WI)Ford/Affliction Clothing
18Kyle Busch (Las Vegas, NV)Toyota/Interstate Batteries
20Joey Logano (Middletown, CT)Toyota/Home Depot
21Trevor Bayne (Knoxville, TN)Ford/Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire
22Kurt Busch (Las Vegas, NV)Dodge/Shell/Pennzoil
24Jeff Gordon (Vallejo, CA)Chevrolet/Pepsi Max
27Paul Menard (Eau Claire, WI)Chevrolet/Menards/Quaker State
29 *Kevin Harvick (Bakersfield, CA)Chevrolet/Budweiser
31Jeff Burton (South Boston, VA)Chevrolet/Caterpillar
32Terry Labonte (Corpus Christi, TX)Ford/C&J Energy
33Clint Bowyer (Emporia, KS)Chevrolet/Cheerios/Hamb. Helper
34David Gilliland (Riverside, CA)Ford/TBA
35Geoffrey Bodine (Chemung, NY)Chevrolet/Luke and Associates
36Dave Blaney (Hartford, OH)Chevrolet/Golden Corral
37Tony Raines (LaPorte, IN)Ford/blackcatfireworks.com
38Travis Kvapil (Janesville, WI)Ford/Long John Silver's
39Ryan Newman (South Bend, IN)Chevrolet/Bass Pro Shops
42Juan Pablo Montoya (Bogota, Colombia)Chevrolet/Target
43A.J. Allmendinger (Los Gatos, CA)Ford/U.S. Air Force
46J.J. Yeley (Phoenix, AZ)Chevrolet/Red Line Oil
47Bobby Labonte (Corpus Christi, TX)Toyota/Kingsford
48Jimmie Johnson (El Cajon, CA)Chevrolet/Lowe's Summer Salute
51Landon Cassill (Cedar Rapids, IA)Chevrolet/Security Benefits
56Martin Truex Jr. (Mayetta, NJ)Toyota/NAPA Auto Parts
60Mike Skinner (Susanville, CA)Toyota/Big Red
66Michael McDowell (Glendale, AZ)Toyota/HP Racing
71Andy Lally (Northport, NY)Ford/TRG Motorsports
78Regan Smith (Cato, NY)Chevrolet/Furniture Row Racing
81Scott Riggs (Bahama, NC)Chevrolet/Whitney's Collision
83Brian Vickers (Thomasville, NC)Toyota/Red Bull
87Joe Nemechek (Lakeland, FL)Toyota/NEMCO Motorsports
88Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Kannapolis, NC)Chevrolet/Amp Energy/Nat'l Guard
97Kevin Conway (Cornelius, NC)Toyota/Extenze
99Carl Edwards (Columbia, MO)Ford/Subway
 
* - defending champion.
 
Leading Contenders (Finish the last nine years)
Driver200220032004200520062007200820092010
Kevin Harvick11th9th14th24th9th34th12th26thWon
Kasey Kahne------25th16th25th9th7th15th2nd
Jeff Gordon22nd14thWon7th40th5th30th28th3rd
Dale Earnhardt Jr6th7th3rd3rd13th36th8th39th4th
Jeff Burton33rd2nd23rd11th15th16th37th16th5th
Carl Edwards---------33rd39th4th2nd4th6th
Kurt Busch31st36th4th37th3rd3rd4th5th7th
David Reutimann---------------26th21st36th11th
Matt Kenseth30th6th39th9th5th8th3rd8th15th
Clint Bowyer------------10th7th9th29th17th
Paul Menard---------------21st15th23rd18th
Greg Biffle---Won31st36th31st6th43rd18th20th
Denny Hamlin------------17th43rd26th3rd24th
Tony Stewart39th21st5thWonWon38th20thWon25th
Ryan Newman27th22nd12th14th11th14th36th20th26th
Juan Pablo Montoya---------------32nd38th9th27th
Mark Martin5th20th6th39th33rd17th10th38th28th
Joey Logano---------------------19th29th
Brad Keselowski---------------------24th30th
Jimmie Johnson8th18th2nd6th32nd10th23rd2nd31st
Regan Smith------------------24th12th33rd
Martin Truex Jr------------29th13th17th25th35th
Jamie McMurray---37th37th2nd8thWon32nd11th39th
Kyle Busch---------31st2nd2ndWon14th40th
Brian Vickers------9th29th18th29th11th7th---
Trevor Bayne---------------------------
 
Mover of the Week
Carl Edwards - Started in the 23rd position and finished 3rd
 
Sports Network Selections
Pick to Win - Dale Earnhardt Jr
Darkhorse - Mark Martin
 
Last Week's Pick to Win (Kevin Harvick) - Finished 9th
Last Week's Darkhorse (Kasey Kahne) - Finished 20th
 
NOTES:
Kevin Harvick avoided a rash of accidents, including the "big one" that involved 19 drivers, and then held off Kasey Kahne and Jeff Gordon in a green- white-checkered finish to win the 2010 running of the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway.

Harvick, currently second on the points list, won his second points-paying race at Daytona. His first win here came in the 2007 Daytona 500. He also won the pre-season Budweiser Shootout at Daytona earlier that year.

It was a wild night of racing at Daytona last year, as the 400-mile event featured 47 lead changes among a record 18 different leaders. Seven of the nine cautions were for multi-car crashes, including the major pileup that occurred with 13 laps remaining. The start of the race was delayed by rain for one and a half hours, and it ended in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Sam Hornish Jr. triggered a three-car wreck in the final laps, which set up the two-lap overtime finish. Harvick's Richard Childress Racing teammate, Clint Bowyer, grabbed the lead from Gordon prior to the caution. After the final restart, Harvick moved around Bowyer and took the top position between turns one and two. Kahne and Gordon also passed Bowyer, who got shuffled back in the field and spun around before finishing 17th. Harvick beat Kahne by 0.09 seconds to claim his second win of that season and the 13th of 17 career Sprint Cup titles.

In defense of his title, Harvick will be making his 375th career Sprint Cup Series start. Bubba the Love Sponge has been named the Grand Marshal and honorary pace car driver for the Coke Zero 400 this weekend.

Tony Stewart regained his winning form at Daytona, as he raced to victory in 2009 on the Fourth of July. Kyle Busch passed Stewart for the lead with less than two laps to go, but Stewart caught his former Joe Gibbs Racing teammate as they came out of the final turn on the last lap. As Stewart attempted to make a pass on the outside, Busch tried to block him, but his rear bumper hit Stewart's front end, as Busch spun around and slammed hard into the wall.

Several other cars crashed in reaction to the incident, while Stewart crossed the finish line for the 35th of 39 Sprint Cup Series titles. With the win, Stewart became the first driver/owner to win multiple races in a season since Ricky Rudd in 1997.

Stewart has won this race three times in the last six years. In 25 Sprint Cup races at Daytona International Speedway, Stewart has recorded 12 top-10 finishes. In the Nationwide Series, Stewart has added five titles and seven top-10's.

After back-to-back runner-up finishes, Busch captured the Coke Zero 400 in 2008, as he defeated Carl Edwards under the caution. Busch led the final seven laps for the 10th of 21 Sprint Cup titles. Pole sitter Paul Menard led the first 19 laps, but finished 15th.

In 2007, Jamie McMurray snapped Stewart's two-year run, as he defeated Kyle Busch by less than a second for his second career Sprint Cup title. McMurray reclaimed the lead on the final lap to post a 0.005 second victory. The final margin is tied for the second closest finish since NASCAR went to electronic timing. The closest finish was 0.002 seconds between Ricky Craven and Kurt Busch in March 2003 at Darlington.

In 2005, pole sitter Stewart dominated this race, leading a whopping 151 of the 160 laps, as he defeated Jamie McMurray by less than a second. Stewart led for the first 103 laps, reclaimed the lead on lap 110 and after a brief respite by Kasey Kahne on lap 142, took the lead for good on lap 145 en route to his 21st career title.

Jeff Gordon, who started on the pole in 2004, became a three-time Coke Zero 400 race winner, as he clipped teammate Jimmie Johnson by less than a second. Gordon is a three-time winner and pole sitter at this race, with his victory total now standing at 84. Gordon has posted six Sprint Cup wins at Daytona, but none since 2005. His next win will be his 85th, putting him alone in third on the all-time list. It would also give him more wins than any other driver during NASCAR's Modern Era (1972-Present), the period in the sport's history when the race-schedule was decreased.

In July 2001, Dale Earnhardt Jr won this race in "Hollywood fashion" in his first return to Daytona after the tragic death of his father at the Daytona 500 in February of the same year.

Prior to Stewart, David Pearson was the last driver to win back-to-back Coke Zero 400s (1972-74) and was a five-time winner of this race. Cale Yarborough leads all drivers with eight pole positions in the Coke Zero 400. Richard Petty was a 10-time winner at Daytona while among active drivers Jeff Gordon has six wins. Bill Elliott is also a five-time pole-sitter at Daytona. Petty recorded his 200th and final Sprint Cup title at Daytona, July 4, 1984.

TRACK FACTS: Groundbreaking for Daytona International Speedway was on November 25, 1957, with the first Sprint Cup Series race, a 100-mile qualifying race for the Daytona 500 on Feb. 20, 1959. Lights were installed in the spring of 1998. However, the race was delayed until October that year due to thick smoke from wildfires. The second Daytona race has been held under lights ever since. There have been 128 Sprint Cup races at the Daytona International Speedway since the track hosted its first race in 1959: 53 have been 500 miles, 48 were 400 miles and four 250 miles. There were also 23 qualifier races that were point races (one in 1959; two from 1960-1971). A driver has swept both races at Daytona only four times, most recently by Bobby Allison in 1982. Bill Elliott won the 1988 summer race from 38th, the deepest in the field that a Daytona race winner has started. Tony Stewart has led 640 laps in 25 races at Daytona, placing him 1st on the active all-time laps led list and eighth overall. Dale Earnhardt is first with 1,286 laps led. Starting from the top-15 certainly has its rewards, as 116 of the 128 races have been won from these positions. 25 from the pole and 69 from the top five.

There are just four tracks on the current Sprint Cup Series schedule that Mark Martin has never won on. Daytona leads the way, as Martin is 0-for-52, followed by Pocono (49 attempts), Indianapolis (17) and Homestead (12). In each instance, Martin's best finish at those tracks is second, including six runner-up finishes at Pocono.

The next Sprint Cup Series race is the July 9th inaugural running of the Quaker State 400 at Kentucky Speedway.

06/28 19:52:49 ET

As of June 28, 2011, at 07:53 PM ET