Date: Oct. 19, 2014
Event: Geico 500 (Round 32 of 36)
Series: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Location: Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway (2.66-mile oval)
Winner: Brad Keselowski of Team Penske in a green-white-checkered finish (Ford)
Kurt Busch (Started 18th, Finished 7th / Running, completed 194 of 194 laps)
Kevin Harvick (Started 39th, Finished 9th / Running, completed 194 of 194 laps)
Danica Patrick (Started 27th, Finished 19th / Running, completed 194 of 194 laps)
Tony Stewart (Started 37th, Finished 34th / Accident, completed 190 of 194 laps
Kevin Harvick (2nd with 4,000 points – Advances to Eliminator Round of Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup)
Kurt Busch (13th with 2,146 points)
Tony Stewart (26th with 700 points)
Danica Patrick (27th with 669 points)
Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, led the four-car Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) contingent Sunday at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway by finishing seventh in the Geico 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race. It was Busch’s ninth top-10 of 2014 and his 14th top-10 in 28 career Sprint Cup starts at the 2.66-mile oval.
Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS for SHR, finished ninth after leading two laps, bringing his laps-led total at Talladega to 173. It was Harvick’s 17th top-10 of 2014 and his 12th top-10 in 28 career Sprint Cup starts at Talladega.
Danica Patrick, driver of the No. 10 GoDaddy Breast Cancer Awareness Chevrolet SS for SHR, finished 19th after leading seven laps. It was Patrick’s 78th career Sprint Cup start and her fourth at Talladega.
Tony Stewart, driver of the No. 14 Bass Pro Shops/Mobil 1 Chevrolet SS for SHR, finished 34th after getting collected in a multicar accident on lap 103. Prior to that misfortune, Stewart led five laps to bring his laps-led total at Talladega to 322.
Brad Keselowski won the Geico 500 to score his 16th career Sprint Cup victory, his series-leading sixth of the season and his third at Talladega.
Matt Kenseth finished .141 of a second behind Keselowski in the runner-up spot, while Clint Bowyer, Landon Cassill and Ryan Newman rounded out the top-five. Travis Kvapil, Busch, Marcos Ambrose, Harvick and Casey Mears comprised the remainder of the top-10.
There were six caution periods for 25 laps, with six drivers failing to finish the 194-lap race, which was extended six laps by a green-white-checkered finish.
As the sixth race in the 10-race Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, Talladega served as the second elimination race. The 12-driver field was whittled down to eight after the Geico 500, advancing the Chase from the Contender Round to the Eliminator Round.
Harvick advanced to the Eliminator Round by virtue of his win a week ago at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway. The eight remaining Chase drivers all had their respective point tallies reset to 4,000. Harvick is joined in the Eliminator Round by Joey Logano, Newman, Denny Hamlin, Kenseth, Carl Edwards, Jeff Gordon and Keselowski.
Three more races will be run before a final elimination round Nov. 9 at Phoenix International Raceway that will set 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 seventh race of the Chase – is the Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 on Oct. 26 at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway. The race begins at 1:30 p.m. EDT, with live coverage provided by ESPN beginning with a prerace show at 1 p.m.