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article imageNASCAR: Kahne conquers ‘tough track’ to win first race of season

By John Duarte     Mar 18, 2013 in Sports
Bristol - Kasey Kahne breathed a huge sigh of relief after winning this weekend’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at a track that has haunted him over the years.
It took 19 Sprint Cup starts at Bristol Motor Speedway, but Kahne finally got the chance to drive into Victory Lane at the fabled race track. His best finish at Bristol came in 2007, when he finished second. He has only made the Top 10 eight times, including a ninth-place standing last year.
“Bristol’s one of those tracks that as a driver you really feel like you need to win. You want to win,” Kahne said after the race. “We’ve been fast here other times and just not been able to finish the deal. It feels good to win at Bristol Motor Speedway.”
Kahne won the Food City 500 going away. He jumped into the lead with 40 laps to go and, then held off Kyle Busch and defending Sprint Cup champion Brad Keselowski to take the checkered flag at Bristol.
Kahne likes the way his 2013 Sprint Cup season has started. A wreck at Daytona brought about a 36th-place finish, and he followed that up with a 19th in Phoenix and was second in Las Vegas.
“We had great cars at Daytona and Phoenix,” he said. “The last two weeks, we could have won, definitely last week, and had a great car again today.”
By virtue of his fourth Top 5 finish in as many races this season, Keselowski jumps into the lead in the Sprint Cup Series. Hot on his heels is Dale Earnhardt Jr., who has finished in the Top 10 in all four races this year. Jimmie Johnson drops two places to third overall in the points’ standings.
Next on the NASCAR schedule is the Auto Club 400, on March 24 at California’s Auto Club Speedway.
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