Hamlin's crew slips up, and Kahne cashes in

Kasey Kahne
Kasey Kahne
Posted: July 16, 2012

LOUDON, N.H. - Kasey Kahne got his second Sprint Cup win of the season. Denny Hamlin and his crew chief had trouble communicating.

Kahne took the lead from Hamlin during a restart on the 240th lap of the 300-lap race at the one-mile New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sunday. The winner was helped by miscommunication between Hamlin, who wanted two tires changed, and crew chief Darian Grubb, who thought he wanted four.

That longer pit stop left Hamlin all the way back in 13th place, but he kept passing cars until only Kahne remained in front. Kahne stayed ahead and won by about 10 car lengths.

It was Kahne's 14th win of his career and first since May 27 at Charlotte. Clint Bowyer, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Brad Keselowski rounded out the top five.

The win enhances Kahne's chances of qualifying for the Chase, the last 10 races of the season in which the top 10 drivers in the point standings win automatic berths. Two additional spots go to the drivers with the most wins who are ranked 11th to 20th in points. Kahne's two wins are more than anyone in the second group of 10.

Penske saving job for AJ

Team owner Roger Penske says driver AJ Allmendinger will be back for the next Sprint Cup race if he is reinstated by NASCAR. Allmendinger was suspended about 90 minutes before the race at Daytona International Speedway on July 7 after a urine sample taken the previous weekend came back positive for what his team identified only as a stimulant.

"We're standing behind A.J," Penske said Sunday. "Hopefully, we'll know something in the next week to 10 days." Allmendinger's "A" sample tested positive and a "B" sample is to be tested with his toxicologist present.

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