Date: Sept. 28, 2014
Event: AAA 400 (Round 29 of 36)
Series: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Location: Dover (Del.) International Speedway (1-mile, concrete oval)
Winner: Jeff Gordon of Hendrick Motorsports (Chevrolet)
Kevin Harvick (Started 1st, Finished 13th / Running, completed 399 of 400 laps)
Tony Stewart (Started 15th, Finished 14th / Running, completed 399 of 400 laps)
Kurt Busch (Started 22nd, Finished 18th / Running, completed 399 of 400 laps)
Danica Patrick (Started 13th, Finished 25th / Running, completed 398 of 400 laps)
Kevin Harvick (5th with 3,000 points – Advances to Contender Round of Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup)
Kurt Busch (14th with 2,073 points)
Tony Stewart (26th with 639 points)
Danica Patrick (28th with 597 points)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS, led the four-car Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) contingent Sunday at Dover (Del.) International Speedway by finishing 13th in the AAA 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race.
Harvick started from the pole and led twice for a race-high 223 laps around the 1-mile, concrete oval until a broken valve stem caused his left-front tire to go flat on lap 252. The unscheduled pit stop dropped Harvick to 21st and off the lead lap. He battled back to finish 13th, earning his 20th top-15 result this season.
Tony Stewart, driver of the No. 14 Mobil 1/Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet SS for SHR, finished 14th to earn his 12th top-15 of the year.
Danica Patrick, driver of the No. 10 GoDaddy Chevrolet SS for SHR, finished 25th. It was Patrick’s 75th career Sprint Cup start and her fifth at Dover.
Jeff Gordon won the AAA 400 to score his 92nd career Sprint Cup victory, his fourth of the season and his fifth at Dover.
Brad Keselowski finished 4.352 seconds behind Gordon in the runner-up spot, while Jimmie Johnson, Joey Logano and Matt Kenseth rounded out the top-five. Kyle Larson, Martin Truex Jr., Ryan Newman, Clint Bowyer and Kyle Busch comprised the remainder of the top-10.
There were five caution periods for 23 laps, with three drivers failing to finish the 400-lap race.
As the third race in the 10-race Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, Dover served as the first elimination race. The 16-driver field was whittled down to 12 after the AAA 400, advancing the Chase from the Challenger Round to the Contender Round.
Harvick and Kurt Busch came into Dover representing SHR in the Chase, but Harvick is now SHR’s sole representative after Busch missed the cut for the Contender Round by a scant six points. Harvick, along with the 11 remaining Chase drivers, all had their respective point tallies reset to 3,000. Harvick is joined in the Contender Round by Keselowski, Gordon, Logano, Johnson, Kenseth, Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch, Newman, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Carl Edwards and Kasey Kahne.
Three more races will be run before the next cutoff for the Eliminator Round, where the Chase field shrinks to eight drivers. Another three races will be run after that, with a final round of eliminations setting up a four-driver, one-race showdown for the championship in the season finale Nov. 16 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
The next event on the Sprint Cup schedule – the fourth race of the 10-race Chase – is the Hollywood Casino 400 on Oct. 5 at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City. The race begins at 2 p.m. EDT, with live coverage provided by ESPN beginning with a prerace show at 1 p.m.