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08.26.13

Runner-Up Finish for Kahne in Bristol

NASCAR - Bristol, TN

It was a battle to the finish line for Kasey Kahne and the No. 5 Farmers Insurance team on Saturday night at Bristol Motor Speedway. After leading the way of all Hendrick Motorsports drivers in qualifying, the team started seventh and challenged for the win before ending the night in second place.

During the early stages of the race, the handling of Kasey’s Chevy SS varied from tight to loose as he maintained positions inside of the top 10. Crew Chief Kenny Francis addressed Kasey’s feedback with several chassis adjustments during the first 100 laps of the race. A call for four tires during a pit stop under caution on Lap 89 cost Kasey track position. He restarted 22nd and slipped another four spots by the time the next yellow flag was waved nine laps later.

Kasey’s No. 5 Chevy SS received contact during the next restart, but the damage was minor and the team addressed it during a subsequent pit stop. Back on track, Kasey made significant gains, climbing to ninth, and he reported to Kenny that the No. 5 was handling better.

As the race unfolded, Kasey appeared committed to the bottom lane and continued to work with Kenny on the handling of his car. Kenny alternated the team’s tire strategy and opted for four tires during a stop under yellow on Lap 333. Kasey remained inside the top 10 after the stop and moved up to run sixth on Lap 347.

The No. 5 team climbed to third by the Lap 439 caution for a multi-car incident that ultimately brought out the red flag. When NASCAR officials re-opened pit road, Kasey stopped for fuel and right-side tires. He returned to the track in ninth and battled for second place with 30 laps to go. By Lap 473, Kasey had moved to second and had his eyes set on a second straight victory at the historic short track. He chased the leader and briefly slipped by him with 14 laps remaining, but couldn’t hold on to the lead. Kasey continually and cleanly fought for the lead, and the strong run moves the team up to eighth in points.

“We had a really good Farmers Insurance Chevrolet,” said Kasey after the race. “We were fast. Kenny (Francis, crew chief) made a great call to get the tires and not worry about fuel. The guys did a great job in the pits, and I feel bad I didn’t win. I had the better car. We needed this. It would have been big for us but we ended up second. It was still a good points day and we’ll try to get one in Atlanta.”

To see the gallery of photos taken from Bristol Motor Speedway, check out our photo album on our Farmers Racing Facebook page!
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