2015 Quicken Loans 400
|Race 15 of 36 in the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series|
Layout of the track
|Date||June 14, 2015|
|Location||Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan|
Permanent racing facility|
2 mi (3.2 km)
|Distance||138 laps, 276 mi (441.6 km)|
|Scheduled Distance||200 laps, 400 mi (640 km)|
|Weather||Mostly cloudy with a temperature of 75 °F (24 °C); wind out of the southwest at 9 mph (14 km/h)|
|Average speed||116.688 mph (187.791 km/h)|
|Most laps led|
|Driver||Kevin Harvick||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|No. 41||Kurt Busch||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|Television in the United States|
|Network||Fox Sports 1|
|Announcers||Mike Joy, Larry McReynolds and Darrell Waltrip|
3.52 Million viewers
|Radio in the United States|
|Booth Announcers||Joe Moore, Jeff Striegle and Rusty Wallace|
|Turn Announcers||Dave Moody (1 & 2) and Mike Bagley (3 & 4)|
The 2015 Quicken Loans 400 was a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race held on June 14, 2015 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. Contested over 138 of the scheduled 200 laps on the 2 mile (3.2 km) D-shaped speedway, it was the 15th race of the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season. Kurt Busch won the race, his second of the season, while Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Martin Truex, Jr. finished second and third. Matt Kenseth and Joey Logano rounded out the top five.
Kasey Kahne won the pole for the race and led one lap on his way to a 15th-place finish. Kevin Harvick led a race high of 63 laps before a flat tire and rain relegated him to a 29th-place finish. The race had 17 lead changes among eleven different drivers, as well as five caution flag periods for 38 laps. There were three red flag periods for one hour, 33 minutes and 13 seconds.
This was the 27th career victory for Kurt Busch, third at Michigan International Speedway and first at the track for Stewart-Haas Racing. This win moved Busch to eleventh in the points standings. Chevrolet left Michigan with a 66-point lead over Ford in the manufacturer standings.
The Quicken Loans 400 was carried by Fox Sports on the cable/satellite Fox Sports 1 network for the American television audience. The radio broadcast for the race was carried by the Motor Racing Network and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio.
- 1 Report
- 2 First practice
- 3 Qualifying
- 4 Practice (post-qualifying)
- 5 Race
- 6 Media
- 7 Standings after the race
- 8 Note
- 9 References
Michigan International Speedway (MIS) is a two-mile (3.2 km) moderate-banked D-shaped speedway located off U.S. Freeway 12 on more than 1,400 acres (5.7 km2) approximately four-mile (6.4 km) south of the village of Brooklyn, in the scenic Irish Hills area of southeastern Michigan. The track is used primarily for NASCAR events. It is sometimes known as a "sister track" to Texas World Speedway, and was used as the basis of Auto Club Speedway. The track is owned by International Speedway Corporation (ISC). Michigan International Speedway is recognized as one of motorsports' premier facilities because of its wide racing surface and high banking (by open-wheel standards; the 18-degree banking is modest by stock car standards). Michigan is the fastest track in NASCAR due to its wide, sweeping corners and long straightaways; typical qualifying speeds are in excess of 200 MPH (320 km/h) and corner entry speeds are anywhere from 215 to 220 mph (346 to 354 km/h) after the 2012 repaving of the track.
Kevin Harvick entered Michigan with a 39-point lead over Martin Truex Jr. following a runner-up finish at Pocono to Truex. Jimmie Johnson entered 78 back. Joey Logano entered 79 back. Dale Earnhardt Jr. entered 94 back.
The entry list for the Quicken Loans 400 was released on Tuesday, June 9 at 9:09 a.m. Eastern time. Forty-four cars were entered for the race. All but the No. 21 Wood Brothers Racing Ford driven by Ryan Blaney were entered the week before at Pocono. The only driver swap for this race is the No. 32 Go FAS Racing Ford that was driven by Mike Bliss.
Kevin Harvick was the fastest in the first practice session with a time of 35.557 and a speed of 202.492 mph (325.879 km/h). His teammate Kurt Busch slapped the wall exiting turn 2 with 30 minutes remaining in the session and switched to his backup car. "Went down in there and was a little twitchier when it turned in and then it went full on left," Busch radioed to his team after the hit. "Sorry … it's pretty much ruined." Because this change took place prior to qualifying, he was not required to start the race from the rear of the field. The session was shortened due to rain.
|1||4||Kevin Harvick||Stewart-Haas Racing||Chevrolet||35.557||202.492|
|2||22||Joey Logano||Team Penske||Ford||35.713||201.607|
|3||78||Martin Truex Jr.||Furniture Row Racing||Chevrolet||35.793||201.157|
|Official first practice results|
Kasey Kahne won the pole with a time of 35.645 and a speed of 201.992 mph (325.075 km/h). “Our Great Clips Chevrolet has had speed all three runs, so I knew we’d have a shot today, so that was cool,” Kahne said. “It’s been a while since we’ve had a pole. It’s going to be really important. The track is going to change a lot, though, come Sunday, with all the racing going on this weekend and then our practices tomorrow. The track will be a lot different Sunday. So, there will be some passing for sure, but it’s not going to be easy. So, track position will play a big role in being there at the end of the race.” "Kasey [Kahne] put up a little better lap than I did, but it was still a solid run," Kevin Harvick said after qualifying second. “It was a good lap,” said Brad Keselowski after qualifying third. “This is one of our weakness tracks here at Michigan International Speedway. We are working on it and trying to get better. I honestly didn’t think we would qualify this well. We came with some new stuff on the car, which seems to be working. I am proud of everyone at Team Penske, Ford and Roush Yates engines for that.” Brendan Gaughan was the lone driver who failed to qualify for the race. Ryan Blaney qualified fifth for the race. “It's really all you can ask for to be better and better in the three rounds,” Blaney said of the team’s qualifying effort. “Everyone did a great job. (Crew chief) Jeremy (Bullins) did a great job of getting us better. It was a good effort for us. We needed it. We're excited about Sunday."
|1||5||Kasey Kahne||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||35.909||35.703||35.645|
|2||4||Kevin Harvick||Stewart-Haas Racing||Chevrolet||35.748||35.645||35.712|
|3||2||Brad Keselowski||Team Penske||Ford||36.205||35.845||35.741|
|4||19||Carl Edwards||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||36.064||35.812||35.809|
|5||21||Ryan Blaney (i)||Wood Brothers Racing||Ford||36.084||35.872||35.811|
|6||24||Jeff Gordon||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||36.526||35.799||35.823|
|7||3||Austin Dillon||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||36.213||36.003||35.836|
|8||48||Jimmie Johnson||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||36.120||35.935||35.882|
|9||78||Martin Truex Jr.||Furniture Row Racing||Chevrolet||36.370||35.980||35.896|
|10||18||Kyle Busch||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||36.537||35.839||35.916|
|11||22||Joey Logano||Team Penske||Ford||36.057||35.850||35.925|
|12||20||Matt Kenseth||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||36.207||35.929||36.076|
|13||11||Denny Hamlin||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||35.965||36.012||—|
|14||88||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||36.252||36.013||—|
|15||14||Tony Stewart||Stewart-Haas Racing||Chevrolet||36.092||36.061||—|
|16||42||Kyle Larson||Chip Ganassi Racing||Chevrolet||36.388||36.102||—|
|17||27||Paul Menard||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||36.343||36.117||—|
|18||55||David Ragan||Michael Waltrip Racing||Toyota||36.337||36.184||—|
|19||10||Danica Patrick||Stewart-Haas Racing||Chevrolet||36.550||36.279||—|
|20||6||Trevor Bayne||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford||36.586||36.294||—|
|21||16||Greg Biffle||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford||36.544||36.324||—|
|22||33||Ty Dillon (i)||Hillman-Circle Sport LLC||Chevrolet||36.526||36.330||—|
|23||31||Ryan Newman||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||36.343||36.340||—|
|24||41||Kurt Busch||Stewart-Haas Racing||Chevrolet||36.287||36.440||—|
|25||1||Jamie McMurray||Chip Ganassi Racing||Chevrolet||36.599||—||—|
|26||43||Aric Almirola||Richard Petty Motorsports||Ford||36.605||—||—|
|27||13||Casey Mears||Germain Racing||Ford||36.630||—||—|
|28||7||Alex Bowman||Tommy Baldwin Racing||Chevrolet||36.657||—||—|
|29||40||Landon Cassill (i)||Hillman-Circle Sport LLC||Chevrolet||36.660||—||—|
|30||9||Sam Hornish Jr.||Richard Petty Motorsports||Ford||36.788||—||—|
|31||47||A. J. Allmendinger||JTG Daugherty Racing||Chevrolet||36.812||—||—|
|32||15||Clint Bowyer||Michael Waltrip Racing||Toyota||36.814||—||—|
|33||17||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford||36.814||—||—|
|34||38||David Gilliland||Front Row Motorsports||Ford||36.831||—||—|
|35||46||Michael Annett||HScott Motorsports||Chevrolet||36.984||—||—|
|36||51||Justin Allgaier||HScott Motorsports||Chevrolet||37.104||—||—|
|37||34||Brett Moffitt (R)||Front Row Motorsports||Ford||37.195||—||—|
|38||26||Jeb Burton (R)[N 1]||BK Racing||Toyota||37.202||—||—|
|39||98||Josh Wise||Phil Parsons Racing||Ford||37.331||—||—|
|40||35||Cole Whitt||Front Row Motorsports||Ford||37.333||—||—|
|41||23||J. J. Yeley (i)||BK Racing||Toyota||37.654||—||—|
|42||32||Mike Bliss (i)||Go FAS Racing||Ford||37.797||—||—|
|43||83||Matt DiBenedetto (R)||BK Racing||Toyota||37.973||—||—|
|Failed to qualify|
|44||62||Brendan Gaughan (i)||Premium Motorsports||Chevrolet||38.431||—||—|
|Official qualifying results|
|1||4||Kevin Harvick||Stewart-Haas Racing||Chevrolet||35.806||201.084|
|2||5||Kasey Kahne||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||35.928||200.401|
|3||42||Kyle Larson||Chip Ganassi Racing||Chevrolet||36.002||199.989|
|Official second practice results|
Jeff Gordon was the fastest in the final practice session with a time of 36.253 and a speed of 198.604 mph (319.622 km/h). Halfway through the session, Denny Hamlin spun out on the front stretch and caused minor damage to the front splitter. The team initially decided to roll out the backup car, but chose to fix the primary car rather than starting from the rear of the race.
|1||24||Jeff Gordon||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||36.253||198.604|
|2||18||Kyle Busch||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||36.259||198.571|
|3||78||Martin Truex Jr.||Furniture Row Racing||Chevrolet||36.259||198.571|
|Official final practice results|
Start and rain delays
The race was scheduled to start at 1:16 p.m., but the threat of thunderstorms prompted NASCAR to move the start time up ten minutes. Eventually, the race started eight minutes after one. Kasey Kahne led the field to the green flag, but lost the lead to Carl Edwards on the first lap. He passed him to lead the second lap. Edwards went by him again to lead the third lap. The first caution of the race flew on lap 11 for rain in turns 1 and 2. The race was red flagged on lap 13 for rain. After 59 minutes, the red flag was lifted and the field was moved off pit road. After two laps under caution, rain began to fall again in turn 1. The rain started coming down harder all around the track and the field was brought back down pit road again. The race was red flagged a second time on lap 19. It was lifted after 34 minutes.
The race was set to restart on lap 25, but it was called off after Alex Bowman – who made contact with the wall early in the race – left debris on the backstretch. Eventually, the race restarted on lap 29. The second caution of the race flew on lap 41. It was a scheduled competition caution due to overnight rain. Josh Wise opted not to pit and took the lead. He drove down pit road the next lap and handed the lead to Kevin Harvick. Just as the field was lining up for the restart on lap 44, rain began to pour a third time. The field was brought back down pit road and the race was red flagged for the third time. After 36 minutes, the red flag was lifted and the field rolled off pit road.
The race restarted on lap 52. The third caution of the race flew on lap 53 for a single car wreck on the front stretch. Exiting turn 4, Kyle Busch's car snapped loose, turned up the track and pounded the wall. The SAFER barrier he hit was damaged and required repair.
The race restarted on lap 60. A number of cars began hitting pit road around lap 77. Kevin Harvick surrendered the lead to pit on lap 83 and handed the lead to Matt Kenseth. He pitted on lap 85 and handed the lead to Brad Keselowski. He ducked onto pit road the next lap and gave the lead to Kyle Larson. He pitted on lap 88 and handed the lead to Joey Logano. He ran out of fuel on lap 95 and hit pit road. This gave the lead to Danica Patrick. She pitted on lap 97 and the lead cycled back to teammate Harvick.
Harvick gave up the lead to pit on lap 121 and handed it to Dale Earnhardt Jr. He pitted the next lap and it went to Kenseth. He pitted the next lap and handed it to Keselowski. Harvick stopped a second time for a flat right-front tire. Debris in turn 3 brought out the fourth caution of the race on lap 125. That debris came from Harvick's car. Edwards opted not to pit and assumed the lead with rain just three miles out. The gamble failed and he pitted before the restart.
Kyle Larson led the field to the restart on lap 130. He too failed on his gamble, pitted for gas three laps later and gave the lead to Kurt Busch. “Yeah, we could see weather coming there off of (Turn) 4 and just praying that it would get here in time for me to stay out and be in the lead when the rain did hit,” Larson said. “Hey, I applaud my guys for trying. We are pretty deep in points so we have to take risks like that to make the Chase. I’m happy with the call, just wish the rain would have come three laps sooner.” The fifth caution of the race flew with 64 laps to go for rain. The field was brought down pit road and the race was red flagged for the fourth time with 62 laps to go. Eventually, NASCAR called the race due to darkness being near and no sign of the weather letting up and Kurt Busch scored his 27th career win and third at Michigan, similar to the rain-shortened Coke Zero 400 last year when Aric Almirola scored his first career win at Daytona.
“(Crew chief) Tony Gibson led these guys through a back-up car, the pit crew was there giving it its best,” Kurt Busch said. “It’s an unbelievable feeling to know what we went through, paced ourselves and found the lead towards the latter part of the race and then the rain came in.” “Yeah, I mean, you just had to wait on the weather to get moved out, wait on them to dry the track,” Earnhardt Jr. said after finishing second. “You know, it didn't give you a whole lot of opportunities to understand your car and know exactly how to adjust your car and what to work on, so we were still dealing with some issues that we wanted to improve when the final shower came.” “We were able to use the strategy to our benefit and come out of here with a top-10 effort and that feels great for this team,” Trevor Bayne said of his season-best finish of ninth. “We have been working hard to get up better results all season and to get this ninth place finish today is a confidence and momentum builder.”
In his weekly Monday appearance on the Sirius XM NASCAR Radio program The Morning Drive, NASCAR Executive Vice-President and Chief Racing Officer Steve O'Donnell explained to Mike Bagley and Pete Pistone the process and reasoning to why the race was called before its scheduled conclusion.
|1||24||41||Kurt Busch||Stewart-Haas Racing||Chevrolet||138||47|
|2||14||88||Dale Earnhardt, Jr.||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||138||43|
|3||9||78||Martin Truex, Jr.||Furniture Row Racing||Chevrolet||138||41|
|4||12||20||Matt Kenseth||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||138||41|
|5||11||22||Joey Logano||Team Penske||Ford||138||40|
|6||3||2||Brad Keselowski||Team Penske||Ford||138||39|
|7||25||1||Jamie McMurray||Chip Ganassi Racing||Chevrolet||138||37|
|8||17||27||Paul Menard||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||138||36|
|9||20||6||Trevor Bayne||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford||138||35|
|10||32||15||Clint Bowyer||Michael Waltrip Racing||Toyota||138||34|
|11||13||11||Denny Hamlin||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||138||33|
|12||4||19||Carl Edwards||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||138||33|
|13||27||13||Casey Mears||Germain Racing||Chevrolet||138||31|
|14||22||33||Ty Dillon (i)||Hillman-Circle Sport LLC||Chevrolet||138||0|
|15||1||5||Kasey Kahne||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||138||30|
|16||19||10||Danica Patrick||Stewart-Haas Racing||Chevrolet||138||29|
|17||16||42||Kyle Larson||Chip Ganassi Racing||Chevrolet||138||28|
|18||23||31||Ryan Newman||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||138||26|
|19||8||48||Jimmie Johnson||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||137||25|
|20||7||3||Austin Dillon||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||137||24|
|21||6||24||Jeff Gordon||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||137||23|
|22||26||43||Aric Almirola||Richard Petty Motorsports||Ford||137||22|
|23||31||47||A. J. Allmendinger||JTG Daugherty Racing||Chevrolet||137||21|
|24||5||21||Ryan Blaney (i)||Wood Brothers Racing||Ford||137||0|
|25||33||17||Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford||137||19|
|26||30||9||Sam Hornish, Jr.||Richard Petty Motorsports||Ford||137||18|
|27||36||51||Justin Allgaier||HScott Motorsports||Chevrolet||137||17|
|28||15||14||Tony Stewart||Stewart-Haas Racing||Chevrolet||137||16|
|29||2||4||Kevin Harvick||Stewart-Haas Racing||Chevrolet||137||17|
|30||35||46||Michael Annett||HScott Motorsports||Chevrolet||137||14|
|31||29||40||Landon Cassill (i)||Hillman-Circle Sport LLC||Chevrolet||137||0|
|32||40||35||Cole Whitt||Front Row Motorsports||Ford||137||12|
|33||37||34||Brett Moffitt (R)||Front Row Motorsports||Ford||137||11|
|34||39||98||Josh Wise||Phil Parsons Racing||Ford||137||11|
|35||18||55||David Ragan||Michael Waltrip Racing||Toyota||136||9|
|36||21||16||Greg Biffle||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford||136||8|
|37||38||26||Jeb Burton (R)||BK Racing||Toyota||136||7|
|38||41||23||J. J. Yeley (i)||BK Racing||Toyota||136||0|
|39||43||83||Matt DiBenedetto (R)||BK Racing||Toyota||136||5|
|40||42||32||Mike Bliss (i)||Go FAS Racing||Ford||136||0|
|41||28||7||Alex Bowman||Tommy Baldwin Racing||Chevrolet||84||3|
|42||34||38||David Gilliland||Front Row Motorsports||Ford||64||2|
|43||10||18||Kyle Busch||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||52||1|
|Official Quicken Loans 400 results|
- 17 lead changes among 11 different drivers
- 5 cautions for 38 laps; 3 red flags for 1 hour, 33 minutes, 22 seconds
- Time of race: 2 hours, 21 minutes, 55 seconds
- Average speed: 116.688 mph (187.791 km/h)
- Kurt Busch took home $186,725 in winnings
- Coors Light Pole Award: Kasey Kahne (35.645, 201.992 mph (325.075 km/h))
- 3M Lap Leader: Kevin Harvick (63 laps)
- American Ethanol Green Flag Restart Award: Carl Edwards
- Duralast Brakes "Bake In The Race" Award: Carl Edwards
- Freescale "Wide Open": Kurt Busch
- Ingersoll Rand Power Move: Jamie McMurray (11 positions)
- MAHLE Clevite Engine Builder of the Race: Hendrick Engines, #41
- Mobil 1 Driver of the Race: Matt Kenseth (117.6 driver rating)
- Moog Steering and Suspension Problem Solver of The Race: Paul Menard (crew chief Justin Alexander (0.260))
- NASCAR Sprint Cup Leader Bonus: No winner: rolls over to $120,000 at next event
- Sherwin-Williams Fastest Lap: Carl Edwards (Lap 30, 36.649, 196.457 mph (316.167 km/h))
- Sunoco Rookie of The Race: Brett Moffitt
Fox Sports covered their seventh race at Michigan International Speedway and their first since 2006. Mike Joy, Larry McReynolds and two time Michigan winner Darrell Waltrip had the booth to call the race. Jamie Little, Chris Neville and Matt Yocum handled the pit road duties for the television side.
|Fox Sports 1|
|Booth announcers||Pit reporters|
|Lap-by-lap: Mike Joy
Color-commentator: Larry McReynolds
Color-commentator: Darrell Waltrip
MRN had the radio call for the race, which was simulcast on Sirius XM NASCAR Radio. Joe Moore, Jeff Striegle and five time Michigan winner Rusty Wallace called the race in the booth when the field was racing down the front stretch. Dave Moody called the race from atop a billboard outside of turn 2 when the field was racing through turns 1 and 2. Mike Bagley called the race from a platform outside turn 4 when the field was racing through turns 3 and 4. Alex Hayden, Winston Kelley and Steve Post worked pit road for MRN.
|Booth announcers||Turn announcers||Pit reporters|
|Lead announcer: Joe Moore
Announcer: Jeff Striegle
Announcer: Rusty Wallace
|Turns 1 & 2: Dave Moody
Turn 3 & 4: Mike Bagley
Standings after the race
- Jeb Burton changed engines after final practice and started the race from the rear of the field.
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2015 Axalta "We Paint Winners" 400
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2015 Toyota/Save Mart 350