Talladega NASCAR: Denny Hamlin wins under yellow
|Sunday, May 4th 2014, 20:47 GMT|
Denny Hamlin took victory in a Talladega NASCAR Sprint Cup race that ended under caution.
A green-white-chequered finish was not possible as the yellow - caused by incidents for Alex Bowman and Justin Allgaier - was called after the leaders had taken the white flag to begin the last lap.
Initially officials looked content to let the field race back to the chequered flag, but with debris from Allgaier's car landing before the finish line, the yellows came out and Joe Gibbs Toyota driver Hamlin had a relaxed final half-lap.
Greg Biffle took second ahead of Clint Bowyer, Brian Vickers and AJ Allmendinger.
Biffle was one of several drivers who spent long stints at the head of the often three-abreast pack during the relatively cagey early part of the race, with Joey Logano and Dale Earnhardt Jr also enjoying spells in control.
Kevin Harvick and Hamlin were the main contenders in the closing stages, but the low-on-fuel Harvick fell back to seventh over the two laps after a late caution for an incident triggered by Carl Edwards spinning into the path of Ryan Newman.
The race featured two of Talladega's traditional multi-car shunts.
Brad Keselowski, who had earlier caught a wild slide onto the infield after turning across the front of brief race leader Danica Patrick, prompted the first when he lost control mid-pack, eliminating polesitter Brian Scott, Jeff Gordon and Matt Kenseth among others.
A spin for Jimmie Johnson led to the second pile-up 13 laps from the end, with Logano the most significant casualty on that occasion.
After Front Row's shock one-two in this event last year, underdogs Josh Wise and Allgaier hinted at similar giantkilling results as they emerged near the head of the pack late on.
In the end the best-placed driver from a small team was Hillman's Landon Cassill in 11th.
Results - 188 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Toyota 3h17m16.000s 2. Greg Biffle Roush Fenway Ford +1.611s 3. Clint Bowyer Waltrip Toyota +2.068s 4. Brian Vickers Waltrip Toyota +2.429s 5. AJ Allmendinger JTG Daugherty Chevrolet +2.570s 6. Paul Menard Childress Chevrolet +2.665s 7. Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Chevrolet +2.878s 8. Kasey Kahne Hendrick Chevrolet +2.985s 9. Kyle Larson Ganassi Chevrolet +3.079s 10. Ricky Stenhouse Jr Roush Fenway Ford +3.178s 11. Landon Cassill Hillman Chevrolet +3.315s 12. Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Toyota +3.477s 13. Aric Almirola Petty Ford +3.526s 14. Casey Mears Germain Chevrolet +3.724s 15. Austin Dillon Childress Chevrolet +3.784s 16. Michael Annett Baldwin Chevrolet +4.241s 17. Martin Truex Jr Furniture Row Chevrolet +4.258s 18. Ryan Newman Childress Chevrolet +4.562s 19. Marcos Ambrose Petty Ford +4.593s 20. Josh Wise Parsons Ford +5.454s 21. Cole Whitt BK Toyota +5.906s 22. Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Chevrolet +7.981s 23. Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Chevrolet +9.547s 24. Terry Labonte Go FAS Ford +9.747s 25. Michael Waltrip Waltrip Toyota +12.598s 26. Dale Earnhardt Jr Hendrick Chevrolet +14.064s 27. Justin Allgaier HScott Chevrolet +48.205s 28. Alex Bowman BK Toyota +1 lap* 29. Jamie McMurray Ganassi Chevrolet +1 lap * Not running at finish Retirements: Carl Edwards Roush Fenway Ford 182 laps Ryan Truex BK Toyota 182 laps Joey Logano Penske Ford 174 laps Kurt Busch Stewart-Haas Chevrolet 174 laps Reed Sorenson Baldwin Chevrolet 174 laps David Ragan Front Row Ford 174 laps Michael McDowell Leavine Ford 174 laps Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Toyota 171 laps** Brad Keselowski Penske Ford 160 laps** Jeff Gordon Hendrick Chevrolet 156 laps** David Gilliland Front Row Ford 150 laps Trevor Bayne Wood Brothers 136 laps Brian Scott Circle Sport Chevrolet 136 laps Tony Stewart Stewart-Haas Chevrolet 136 laps ** Running again at finish