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article imageNASCAR: Kenseth wins game of ‘musical chairs’ in Kansas

By John Duarte     Apr 22, 2013 in Technology
Kansas City - Matt Kenseth may wish NASCAR held all its races in Kansas after he won the STP 400, for his second straight victory at Kansas Speedway.
Kenseth qualified his car to start in the pole position and was fastest during the third practice session before leading for 163 of the race total 267 laps. He was in control for most of the race, staying close to the front of the pack and never out of the Top 10.
Kenseth and eventual runner-up Kasey Kahne went side-by-side entering the final lap of the STP 400, but Kenseth pulled ahead down the front straight and raced to take the checkered flag. Current Sprint Cup points leader Jimmie Johnson finished third.
“It was kind of like musical chairs,” Kenseth said after the race. “You had to be out front when the music stopped.”
For Kahne, the race brought back memories of Las Vegas last month where he also finished second to a streaking Kenseth.
“Felt like Vegas all over again, in how I could catch him but couldn’t really do anything once I got close,” Kahne said. “I tried a lot, but Matt was fast.”
Kenseth said he began to feel good about his chances during the late stages of the race and, in particular, after the last restart.
“We had a good restart when we needed to and got by five or six of them guys,” he said. “Once our car was in front, it was really fast, and I knew I was going to be hard to beat.”
Johnson praised Kenseth’s ability to make adjustments on the track to get the most out of his car. He called Kenseth “an awesome race car driver” who always seems able to “find that little bit more” when the race is on the line.
“The guy can do it and always has,” he said. “Sheer speed and making good decisions and knowing how to work traffic and race cars. It doesn’t surprise me to see the success he’s been having.”
Johnson’s third-place finish in Kansas ensures he stays in the lead of the Sprint Cup Series standings. Kahne climbs five spots into second place, 37 points behind the leader, one point ahead of Brad Keselowski, who drops to third.
Next on the 2013 Sprint Cup schedule is the Toyota Owners 400 on Saturday, April 27, at Richmond International Raceway in Virginia.
More about Nascar, Sprint cup series, Matt Kenseth, Kasey Kahne, Jimmie Johnson
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