2012 Bojangles' Southern 500

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2012 Bojangles' Southern 500
Race details[1][2][3]
Race 11 of 36 in the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Date May 12, 2012
Location Darlington Raceway in Darlington, South Carolina
Course Permanent racing facility
1.366 mi (2.198 km)
Distance 368 laps, 502.688 mi (808.998 km)
Weather Clear with a temperature around 82°F; wind out of the E at 5 mph.
Average speed 133.802 miles per hour (215.333 km/h)
Pole position
Driver Roush Fenway Racing
Time 27.281
Most laps led
Driver Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports
Laps 134
Winner
No. 48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports
Television in the United States
Network Fox
Announcers Mike Joy, Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds

The 2012 Bojangles' Southern 500, the 56th running of the event, was a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stock car race held on May 12, 2012 at Darlington Raceway in Darlington, South Carolina.

Contested over 368 laps (the final restart following a pace car period occurred on Lap 367; under NASCAR rules, if the penultimate lap is run under the Safety Car, the ensuing restart will be two consecutive green flag laps, and there will be three attempts to finish the race with two consecutive green-flag laps), it was the eleventh race of the 2012 season. Jimmie Johnson of Hendrick Motorsports took his first win of the season, while Denny Hamlin finished second and Tony Stewart finished third.

Report[edit]

Background[edit]

Darlington Raceway, the race track where the race was held.

Darlington Raceway is one of ten intermediate tracks to hold NASCAR races; the others are Atlanta Motor Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway, Chicagoland Speedway, Homestead Miami Speedway, Kansas Speedway, Kentucky Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, New Hampshire Motor Speedway, and Texas Motor Speedway.[4] The standard track at the speedway is a four-turn superspeedway that is 1.366 miles (2.198) long.[5] The track's first two turns are banked at twenty-five degrees, while the final two turns are banked two degrees lower at twenty-three degrees.[5] The front stretch (the location of the finish line) and the back stretch is banked at six degrees.[5] Darlington Raceway can seat up to 63,000 people.[5]

The 2012 race marked a milestone of the race that traces its lineage to the 1957 Rebel 300. It was the 50th running of the Rebel 500 for fixed-roof hardtops (the 1957-62 races in the Rebel 300/400/500 lineage were run as NASCAR Convertible Division races), as the race was first designated for fixed-roof hardtops in 1963.

Before the race, Greg Biffle led the Drivers' Championship with 378 points, and Matt Kenseth stood in second with 371.[6] Dale Earnhardt, Jr. was third in the Drivers' Championship with 369 points, eighteen ahead of Denny Hamlin and thirty-six ahead of Kevin Harvick in fourth and fifth.[6] Martin Truex, Jr. with 332 was four points ahead of Tony Stewart, as Jimmie Johnson with 324 points, was sixteen points ahead of Kyle Busch, and twenty-two in front of Clint Bowyer.[6] In the Manufacturers' Championship, Chevrolet was leading with 63 points, five ahead of Toyota. Ford, with 53 points, was seven points ahead of Dodge in the battle for third.[7] Regan Smith was the race's defending race winner after winning it in 2011.[8]

Practice and qualifying[edit]

Greg Biffle won the pole position with a time of 27.281 seconds.

Two practice sessions were held before the race on May 11, 2012. The first session was 120 minutes long, while the second lasted 45 minutes.[9] Harvick was quickest with a time of 27.769 seconds in the first session,around one-tenth of a second faster than Biffle.[10] Kurt Busch was third, followed by Carl Edwards, Stewart, and Truex, Jr.[10] Johnson was seventh, still within three-tenths of a second of Harvick's time.[10] In the second practice session, A. J. Allmendinger wasquickest with a time of 28.097.[11] Biffle followed Allmendinger in the second position with a time of 28.144 seconds; 0.047 seconds slower.[11] Edwards was third quickest, ahead of Johnson, Travis Kvapil, and Paul Menard.[11] Landon Cassill followed in the seventh position with a time of 28.422 seconds.[11]

Forty-seven cars were for qualifying, but only forty-three would race because of NASCAR's qualifying procedure.[12] Biffle clinched the eleventh pole position of his career with a time of 27.281 seconds, the only qualifying lap under 27.300 seconds.[13] Johnson and Kahne qualified 0.105 seconds behind, but Johnson joined Biffle on the front row of the grid because of a better Owner's Championship position compared to Kahne.[3][13] Ryan Newman took fourth place, ahead of Kyle Busch and Truex, Jr. in the fifth and sixth positions.[13] Edwards qualified seventh, while Hamlin followed in eighth.[13] Smith and Jeff Burton completed the first ten positions.[13] The four drivers who failed to qualify for the race were Scott Riggs, Michael McDowell, Stephen Leicht and Mike Bliss.[13]

Once the qualifying session concluded, Driver's Championship leader Biffle stated, "This is what a race car driver looks forward to, showing up every weekend and having a really fast car to drive. They're making me look good so far."[3] Afterward, he described his qualifying lap, "It was a pretty uneventful lap. The car just had a ton of grip — it stuck to the race track really, really well. I felt like I was a little bit light down in Turns 1 and 2 — I should have been a little bit quicker down there — but I got a lot out of it in 3 and 4, so it was a great lap."[3]

Race[edit]

Greg Biffle started up in front. The big story was the question over whether or not former rivals Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch would get into a feud again like in 2011 the prior race. There was a long green-flag run with 172 laps going green. After a caution for debris Jimmie Johnson who almost won at Martinsville that year, took the lead. Kyle Busch on lap 200 clinched the bonus prize money for the fastest pit crew of the race.

Two more cautions flew for debris and Dale Earnhardt Jr. was penalized for speeding on pit road. However, when Bobby Labonte crashed Dale Earnhardt Jr. was given back a lap. Jimmie Johnson pitted and regained the lead while Phoenix Racing driver Kurt Busch road up to the top ten conserving fuel.

With less than 50 laps left in the race, Jamie McMurray crashed with Regan Smith. Tony Stewart was in third spot and contended to win. However Stewart spun his tires on the restart and fell back to 7th place. Jimmie Johnson continued to lead. Suddenly the next caution flew with five laps left. This caution brought out the Darlington fireworks because Kurt Busch blew a tire and slipped into the wall causing Ryan Newman to crash also.

Believing that Kurt intentionally crashed Ryan Newman, under the caution Newman's gasman Andy Rueger gestured the finger to Busch's crew chief Nick Harrison. Even though it was clear that Busch was not at fault for Newman's crash Ryan Newman did not buy the excuses for his part in the crash. During the pit stops, Kurt Busch drove out of Newman's pit box in a reckless style. Kurt's former rival Jimmie Johnson meanwhile went on to win the race giving Rick Hendrick his 200th Sprint Cup victory as an owner. It was Johnson's third Darlington win (he swept the two races in 2004).

When the race ended Kurt Busch crashed into Ryan Newman's car. Finally Andy Rueger charged at Busch but pushed over an official. This led to a brawl between the pit crews but Kurt was led away to the NASCAR hauler during the struggle to explain himself. This incident was described as being similar to the previous race at Darlington in 2011 when Kevin Harvick thought that an accident with Kyle Busch was intentional and smacked Busch after the race.

The next morning fines were released. Kurt Busch was fined $50,000, put on probation for 6 races and was given a warning of suspension if something similar happened. Ryan Newman's gasman Andy Rueger was fined $10,000 for both shoving an official over during the brawl and refusing orders to not go after Kurt. Newman's crew chief was fined $25,000 for failing to take control of the team immediately before the incident and Stewart-Haas Racing lost 55 points for the cup championship. When Ryan Newman was interviewed later that night after talking to Kurt he said "It is easy to say and it is easy to see that Kurt blew a fuse again. I do not know why he did it or why he tried to run over our guys."

When Kurt was asked on his opinion the next day he replied "I am very sorry to have gotten into it with Ryan Newman. He and I are friends and before he says what he said last night he should take a look at that Daytona 500 trophy of his in his house...now helped him win it?"

Results[edit]

Qualifying[edit]

No. Driver Team Manufacturer Time Speed Grid
16 Greg Biffle Roush Fenway Racing Ford 27.281 180.257 1
48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 27.386 179.566 2
5 Kasey Kahne Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 27.386 179.566 3
39 Ryan Newman Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet 27.402 179.461 4
18 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 27.404 179.448 5
56 Martin Truex, Jr. Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 27.424 179.317 6
99 Carl Edwards Roush Fenway Racing Ford 27.427 179.298 7
11 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 27.444 179.187 8
78 Regan Smith Furniture Row Racing Chevrolet 27.451 179.141 9
31 Jeff Burton Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 27.458 179.095 10
1 Jamie McMurray Earnhardt Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 27.459 179.089 11
24 Jeff Gordon Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 27.461 179.076 12
43 Aric Almirola Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 27.474 178.991 13
27 Paul Menard Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 27.484 178.926 14
2 Brad Keselowski Penske Racing Dodge 27.500 178.822 15
22 A. J. Allmendinger Penske Racing Dodge 27.506 178.783 16
14 Tony Stewart Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet 27.515 178.724 17
55 Mark Martin Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 27.551 178.491 18
17 Matt Kenseth Roush Fenway Racing Ford 27.592 178.226 19
83 Landon Cassill BK Racing Toyota 27.613 178.090 20
20 Joey Logano Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 27.630 177.980 21
47 Bobby Labonte JTG Daugherty Racing Toyota 27.631 177.974 22
29 Kevin Harvick Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 27.635 177.948 23
88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 27.642 177.903 24
51 Kurt Busch Phoenix Racing Chevrolet 27.651 177.845 25
15 Clint Bowyer Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 27.661 177.781 26
42 Juan Pablo Montoya Earnhardt Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 27.735 177.307 27
9 Marcos Ambrose Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 27.794 176.930 28
79 Scott Speed Go Green Racing Ford 27.802 176.879 29
26 Josh Wise Front Row Motorsports Ford 27.823 176.746 30
13 Casey Mears Germain Racing Ford 27.825 176.733 31
30 David Stremme Inception Motorsports Toyota 27.845 176.606 32
73 Travis Kvapil BK Racing Toyota 27.847 176.594 33
36 Dave Blaney Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet 27.857 176.530 34
52 Mike Skinner Hamilton Means Racing Toyota 27.957 175.899 35
38 David Gilliland Front Row Motorsports Ford 27.978 175.767 36
34 David Ragan Front Row Motorsports Ford 28.004 175.604 37
10 Danica Patrick Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet 28.021 175.497 38
74 Cole Whitt Turn One Racing Chevrolet 28.021 175.497 39
87 Joe Nemechek NEMCO Motorsports Toyota 28.097 175.022 40
93 David Reutimann BK Racing Toyota 28.196 174.408 41
32 Reed Sorenson FAS Lane Racing Ford 28.307 173.724 42
49 J. J. Yeley Robinson-Blakeney Racing Toyota 28.125 174.848 43
Failed to Qualify
23 Scott Riggs R3 Motorsports Chevrolet 28.129 174.823
98 Michael McDowell Phil Parsons Racing Ford 28.144 174.730
33 Stephen Leicht Joe Falk Chevrolet 28.155 174.662
19 Mike Bliss Humphrey Smith Racing Toyota 28.157 174.649
Source:[13][14]

Race results[edit]

Pos Grid No. Driver Team Manufacturer Laps Points
1 2 48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 368 48
2 8 11 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 368 43
3 17 14 Tony Stewart Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet 368 41
4 5 18 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 368 41
5 6 56 Martin Truex, Jr. Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 368 40
6 19 17 Matt Kenseth Roush Fenway Racing Ford 368 38
7 7 99 Carl Edwards Roush Fenway Racing Ford 368 37
8 3 5 Kasey Kahne Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 368 37
9 28 9 Marcos Ambrose Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 368 35
10 21 20 Joey Logano Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 368 34
11 26 15 Clint Bowyer Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 368 33
12 1 16 Greg Biffle Roush Fenway Racing Ford 368 33
13 14 27 Paul Menard Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 368 31
14 9 78 Regan Smith Furniture Row Racing Chevrolet 368 30
15 15 2 Brad Keselowski Penske Racing Dodge 368 29
16 23 29 Kevin Harvick Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 368 28
17 24 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 368 28
18 10 31 Jeff Burton Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 368 26
19 13 43 Aric Almirola Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 368 25
20 18 55 Mark Martin Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 368 24
21 25 51 Kurt Busch Phoenix Racing Chevrolet 368 23
22 31 13 Casey Mears Germain Racing Ford 367 22
23 4 39 Ryan Newman Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet 367 22
24 27 42 Juan Pablo Montoya Earnhardt Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 366 20
25 36 38 David Gilliland Front Row Motorsports Ford 366 19
26 20 83 Landon Cassill BK Racing Toyota 366 19
27 34 36 Dave Blaney Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet 365 17
28 37 34 David Ragan Front Row Motorsports Ford 364 16
29 22 47 Bobby Labonte JTG Daugherty Racing Toyota 364 15
30 42 32 Reed Sorenson FAS Lane Racing Ford 363 0
31 38 10 Danica Patrick Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet 362 0
32 33 73 Travis Kvapil BK Racing Toyota 362 PE
33 16 22 A. J. Allmendinger Penske Racing Dodge 357 11
34 11 1 Jamie McMurray Earnhardt Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 345 10
35 12 24 Jeff Gordon Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 339 9
36 41 93 David Reutimann BK Racing Toyota 314 8
37 43 49 J. J. Yeley Robinson-Blakeney Racing Toyota 132 7
38 39 74 Cole Whitt Turn One Racing Chevrolet 35 0
39 32 30 David Stremme Inception Motorsports Toyota 32 5
40 40 87 Joe Nemechek NEMCO Motorsports Toyota 27 0
41 35 52 Mike Skinner Hamilton Means Racing Toyota 20 0
42 29 79 Scott Speed Go Green Racing Ford 20 2
43 30 26 Josh Wise Front Row Motorsports Ford 19 1
Source:

Standings after the race[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Schedule". ESPN. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  2. ^ Brown, Brian (May 8, 2012). "The Southern 500". Rotoworld.com. Retrieved May 10, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Biffle finds speed to take pole at Darlington". NASCAR Wire Service. NASCAR. May 11, 2012. Retrieved May 11, 2012. 
  4. ^ "NASCAR Race Tracks". NASCAR. Archived from the original on February 7, 2011. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  5. ^ a b c d "Darlington Raceway". NASCAR. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  6. ^ a b c "Driver's Championship Classification". NASCAR. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  7. ^ a b "Manufactures' Championship Classification". Jayski.com. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  8. ^ "2011 Showtime Southern 500". racing-reference.com. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  9. ^ "Jayski's© NASCAR Silly Season Site – Sprint Cup Race Info / Rundown Page". Jayski.com. Retrieved May 10, 2012. 
  10. ^ a b c "Practice One Timing and Scoring". NASCAR. Retrieved May 11, 2012. 
  11. ^ a b c d "Practice Two Timing and Scoring". NASCAR. Retrieved May 11, 2012. 
  12. ^ "Qualifying Entry List". NASCAR. Retrieved May 11, 2012. 
  13. ^ a b c d e f g "Race Lineup: Bojangles' Southern 500". NASCAR. May 11, 2012. Retrieved May 11, 2012. 
  14. ^ "Statistics: Bojangles' Southern 500 Qualifying". Motor Racing Network. Retrieved May 11, 2012. 


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