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NASCAR - Sprint Cup - Coca-Cola 600 Preview

DateSunday, May 24SiteCharlotte Motor Speedway -- Concord, North Carolina
Track1.5-mile ovalCapacity135,000 (Grandstand Seating)
AnnouncersRadioPerformance Racing Network (PRN)/SIRIUS NASCAR Radio
Start Time6 p.m. ETLaps400
Pick to WinPick to Win - Jimmie JohnsonDarkhorse
Last Week's Pick to Win (Jimmie Johnson) - finished 15
Defending ChampionJimmie JohnsonRunner UpKevin Harvick
Last Year's Pole WinnerJimmie Johnson (finished 1)  


Qualifying RecordsKurt Busch, October 2014 (198.771 mph/set in round 2 of 3)Race RecordKasey Kahne, 2012 (155.687 mph - 600-mile race)
Total PursePayouts

2014 Finish

1Jimmie Johnson1
6Brian Vickers16
2Kevin Harvick11
7Jeff Gordon27
3Matt Kenseth12
8Paul Menard21
4Carl Edwards22
9Kyle Busch7
5Jamie McMurray26
10Brad Keselowski2

Facts and Figures

Average Speed145.484 mphTime of Race4 hrs., 7 mins., 27 secs.
Margin of Victory1.272 secs.Caution Flags8 for 44 laps
Lead Changes34 among 9 driversPole WinnerJimmie Johnson (194.911 mph)

Past Winners

YearDriverCarSpeed Time
2014Jimmie JohnsonChevrolet145.484 mph
2013Kevin HarvickChevrolet130.521 mph
2012Kasey KahneChevrolet155.687 mph
2011Kevin HarvickChevrolet132.414 mph
2010Kurt BuschDodge144.966 mph
2009David ReutimannToyota120.899 mph
2008Kasey KahneDodge135.772 mph
2007Casey MearsChevrolet130.222 mph
2006Kasey KahneDodge128.840 mph
2005Jimmie JohnsonChevrolet114.698 mph
2004Jimmie JohnsonChevrolet142.763 mph
2003Jimmie JohnsonChevrolet126.198 mph
2002Mark MartinFord137.729 mph.
2001Jeff BurtonFord138.107 mph
2000Matt KensethFord142.640 mph
1999Jeff BurtonFord151.367 mph
1998Jeff GordonChevrolet136.424 mph
1997Jeff GordonChevrolet136.745 mph
1996Dale JarrettFord147.581 mph
1995Bobby LabonteChevrolet151.952 mph
1994Jeff GordonChevrolet139.445 mph
1993Dale EarnhardtChevrolet145.504 mph
1992Dale EarnhardtChevrolet132.980 mph
1991Davey AllisonFord138.951 mph
1990Rusty WallacePontiac137.650 mph
1989Darrell WaltripChevrolet144.077 mph
1988Darrell WaltripChevrolet124.460 mph
1987Kyle PettyFord131.483 mph
1986Dale EarnhardtChevrolet140.406 mph
1985Darrell WaltripChevrolet141.807 mph
1984Bobby AllisonBuick129.233 mph
1983Neil BonnettChevrolet140.707 mph
1982Neil BonnettFord130.058 mph
1981Bobby AllisonBuick129.326 mph
1980Benny ParsonsChevrolet119.265 mph
1979Darrell WaltripChevrolet136.674 mph
1978Darrell WaltripChevrolet138.355 mph
1977Richard PettyDodge137.676 mph
1976David PearsonMercury137.352 mph
1975Richard PettyDodge145.327 mph
1974David PearsonMercury135.720 mph
1973Buddy BakerDodge134.890 mph
1972Buddy BakerDodge142.255 mph
1971Bobby AllisonMercury140.422 mph
1970Donnie AllisonFord129.680 mph
1969LeeRoy YarboroughMercury134.361 mph
1968Buddy BakerDodge104.207 mph
1967Jim PaschalPlymouth135.832 mph
1966Marvin PanchPlymouth135.042 mph
1965Fred LorenzenFord121.772 mph
1964Jim PaschalPlymouth125.772 mph
1963Fred LorenzenFord132.418 mph
1962Nelson StacyFord125.552 mph
1961David PearsonPontiac-.633 mph
1960Joe Lee JohnsonChevrolet107.735 mph

Past Pole Winners

2014Jimmie Johnson1
2013Denny Hamlin4
2012Aric Almirola16
2011Brad Keselowski19
2010Ryan Newman9
2009Ryan Newman2
2008Kyle Busch3
2007Ryan Newman39
2006Scott Riggs13
2005Ryan Newman5
2004Jimmie Johnson1
2003Ryan Newman5
2002Jimmie Johnson7
2001Ryan Newman43
2000Dale Earnhardt Jr4
1999Bobby Labonte2
1998Jeff Gordon1
1997Jeff Gordon1
1996Jeff Gordon4
1995Jeff Gordon33
1994Jeff Gordon1
1993Ken Schrader4
1992Bill Elliott14
1991Mark Martin23
1990Ken Schrader11
1989Alan Kulwicki23
1988Davey Allison5
1987Bill Elliott23
1986Geoffrey Bodine31
1985Bill Elliott18
1984Harry Gant4
1983Buddy Baker7
1982David Pearson21
1981Neil Bonnett29
1980Cale Yarborough17
1979Neil Bonnett25
1978David Pearson5
1977David Pearson2
1976David Pearson1
1975David Pearson3
1974David Pearson1
1973Buddy Baker1
1972Bobby Allison2
1971Charlie Glotzbach28
1970Bobby Isaac7
1969Donnie Allison2
1968Donnie Allison2
1967Cale Yarborough41
1966Richard Petty22
1965Fred Lorenzen1
1964Jimmy Pardue24
1963Junior Johnson2
1962Fireball Roberts9
1961Fred Lorenzen5
1960Fireball Roberts35

Last Race Results

NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race (May 16)

SiteCharlotte Motor Speedway -- Concord, North CarolinaMiles165
Laps110 total in five segments (25/25/25/25/10)Pole WinnerDenny Hamlin (finished 1)
Time of Race1 hr., 33 mins., 00 secs.Average Speed106.452 mph
Margin of Victory0.923 secs.Caution Flags4 for 0 laps
Lead Changes7 among 4 drivers  
Lap Leaders: D. Hamlin 1-14; K. Kahne 15-25; B. Keselowski 26-32; Kurt Busch D. Hamlin 1-14; K. Kahne 15-25; B. Keselowski 26-32; Kurt Busch 33; B. Keselowski 34-75; D. Hamlin 76-77; Kurt Busch 78-100; D. Hamlin 101-110.
Winner: Denny Hamlin
Second: Kevin Harvick
Third: Kurt Busch
Fourth: Jeff Gordon
Fifth: Matt Kenseth

Entry List

1Jamie McMurray(Joplin, MO)Chevrolet/Cessna/McDonald's
2Brad Keselowski(Rochester Hills, MI)Ford/Miller Lite
3Austin Dillon(Welcome, NC)Chevrolet/Cheerios
4Kevin Harvick(Bakersfield, CA)Chevrolet/Budweiser/Jimmy John's
5Kasey Kahne(Enumclaw, WA)Chevrolet/Lift Master
6Trevor Bayne(Knoxville, TN)Ford/AdvoCare
7Alex Bowman(Tucson, AZ)Chevrolet/TBA
9Sam Hornish Jr.(Defiance, OH)Ford/TBA
10Danica Patrick(Roscoe, IL)Chevrolet/GoDaddy
11Denny Hamlin(Chesterfield, VA)Toyota/FedEx Office
13Casey Mears(Bakersfield, CA)Ford/GEICO
14Tony Stewart(Columbus, IN)Chevrolet/Bass Pro Shops/Mobil 1
15Clint Bowyer(Emporia, KS)Toyota/5-Hour Energy
16Greg Biffle(Vancouver, WA)Ford/Ortho
17Ricky Stenhouse Jr.(Olive Branch, MS)Ford/Fastenal
18Kyle Busch(Las Vegas, NV)Toyota/Skittles
19Carl Edwards(Columbia, MO)Toyota/Subway
20Matt Kenseth(Cambridge, WI)Toyota/DeWalt
21Ryan Blaney(High Point, NC)Ford/Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire
22Joey Logano(Middletown, CT)Ford/Shell Pennzoil
23J.J. Yeley(Phoenix, AZ)Toyota/Hope for the Warriors
24Jeff Gordon(Vallejo, CA)Chevrolet/Drive to End Hunger
25Chase Elliott(Dawsonville, GA)Chevrolet/NAPA Auto Parts
26Jeb Burton(Halifax, VA)Toyota/Maxim Fantasy Sports
27Paul Menard(Eau Claire, WI)Chevrolet/Menards/Serta
30Jeff Green(Owensboro, KY)Chevrolet/Curtis Key Plumbing
31Ryan Newman(South Bend, IN)Chevrolet/Quicken Loans
32Mike Bliss(Milwaukie, OR)Ford/Rimrock/Devlin
33Alex Kennedy(Aztec, NMChevrolet/
34Brett Moffitt(Grimes, IA)Ford/CSX/Play It Safe
35Cole Whitt(Alpine, CA)Ford/Speed Stick
38David Gilliland(Riverside, CA)Ford/Love's Travel Stops
39Travis Kvapil(Janesville, WI)Chevrolet/TBA
40Landon Cassill(Fairfax, IA)Chevrolet/Snap Fitness
41Kurt Busch(Las Vegas, NV)Chevrolet/Haas Automation
42Kyle Larson(Elk Grove, CA)Chevrolet/Target
43Aric Almirola(Tampa, FL)Ford/United States Air Force
46Michael Annett(Des Moines, IA)Chevrolet/Pilot Flying J
47A.J. Allmendinger(Los Gatos, CA)Chevrolet/Scott Products
48 *Jimmie Johnson(El Cajon, CA)Chevrolet/Lowe's Patriotic
51Justin Allgaier(Riverton, IL)Chevrolet/TBA
55David Ragan(Unadilla, GA)Toyota/Aaron's Dream Machine
62Brendan Gaughan(Las Vegas, NV)Chevrolet/Vydox Plus
78Martin Truex Jr.(Mayetta, NJ)Chevrolet/Furniture Row
83Matt DiBenedetto(Grass Valley, CA)Toyota/Dustless Blasting
88Dale Earnhardt Jr.(Kannapolis, NC)Chevrolet/Nationwide
95Michael McDowell(Glendale, AZ)Ford/Thrivent Financial
98Josh Wise(Riverside, CA)Ford/TBA

Leading Contenders

Jimmie Johnson210391337281122Won
Kevin Harvick3421144111Won8Won2
Matt Kenseth512710101410153
Carl Edwards3159416169114
Jamie McMurray819232123721195
Jeff Gordon36414146207357
Paul Menard24---412982915138
Kyle Busch3830363323389
Brad Keselowski------------201953610
Joey Logano---------913323512
Tony Stewart4261819151725713
Kasey KahneWon23Won71222Won214
Ryan Newman353921293114615
Austin Dillon------------------------16
Clint Bowyer1929253671513817
Kyle Larson------------------------18
Dale Earnhardt Jr.11854022763919
Greg Biffle743220321343121
Denny Hamlin99241118102422
Martin Truex Jr.21163423232612925
Kurt Busch39321634Won427340
The Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway is the 12th race on the 2015 Sprint Cup Series schedule. This 600-mile event is the longest one of the season. Construction of this 1.5-mile racetrack began in 1959. A lighting system was installed in 1992, making it the first modern superspeedway to host night races. The track was repaved in 1994 and again before the 2006 season. The name of the track changed to Lowe's Motor Speedway in 1999 but changed back to Charlotte Motor Speedway for the 2010 season. Charlotte has 24 degrees of banking in all of its turns as well as 5 degrees of banking on both the frontstretch and backstretch. The length of the frontstretch is 1,980 feet, and the backstretch measures 1,500 feet. There have been 112 races in NASCAR's premier series held at Charlotte. The series has competed at this track twice each year since it opened in 1960. Charlotte will host the fourth round in the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship -- a 500-mile event -- the second weekend in October. Joe Lee Johnson won the inaugural Cup race at Charlotte, the World 600, on June 19, 1960. Richard Petty holds the record for the most starts at this track with 64. Jeff Gordon's 44 starts there is the most among active drivers. Jimmie Johnson holds the record for most wins at Charlotte with seven. When Johnson won the Coca-Cola 600 one year ago, he surpassed Bobby Allison and Darrell Waltrip for the track record. Waltrip holds the record for most victories in the 600-mile race at this track with five. He won it in 1978, '79, '85, '88 and '89. Rick Hendrick has the most car owner wins at Charlotte with 18. Jack Roush and Petty are next in line with eight victories each there. David Pearson holds the record for most pole wins at this track with 14. Ryan Newman and Gordon lead all active drivers with nine poles each there. The race winner at Charlotte has started from the pole 15 times. Johnson most recently did it in May 2014. Since NASCAR began using electronic timing and scoring in 1993, the closest margin of victory in a Sprint Cup race at this track occurred on May 29, 2005 when Johnson beat Bobby Labonte to the finish line by just 0.027 seconds. The 600-mile race there a decade ago featured a NASCAR-record 22 cautions, mostly for accidents caused by blown tires. The event took 5 hours, 13 minutes and 52 seconds to complete and moved at a pace of 114.698 mph. The furthest back a driver has started and won a Cup Series race at Charlotte is 37th, accomplished by Johnson in the 2003 rain-shortened 600-mile event. Four drivers on the entry list for this race scored their first career wins in the series at this track: Gordon (May 29, 1994), Matt Kenseth (May 28, 2000), Jamie McMurray (Oct. 13, 2002) and Casey Mears (May 27, 2007). Four drivers entered recorded their maiden poles in the series at Charlotte: Gordon (October 1993), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (May 2000), Ryan Newman (May 2001) and Aric Almirola (May 2012). Two drivers entered made their series debuts in the 600-mile race at this track: Earnhardt Jr. (1999) and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (2011). Johnson made his first career Cup start there in October 2001 as did Kyle Larson in October 2013. Gordon holds the record as the youngest driver to win a race at Charlotte. He took the checkered flag there on May 29, 1994 when he was 22 years, 9 months and 25 days old. When Cale Yarborough was 46 years, 6 months and 9 days old, he became the oldest driver to win at this track on Oct. 6, 1985. The next race is the May 31 FedEx 400 Benefiting Autism Speaks at Dover International Speedway, Johnson won last year's race there.
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