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2008 AMP Energy 500

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

2008 AMP Energy 500
Race details[1][2]
Race 30 of 36 in the 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Layout of Talladega Superspeedway. The track has four turns with one backstretch linking the turns together. The pit road splits off from the track at the fourth turn, and rejoins the track at the entry of the first turn.
Talladega Superspeedway
Date October 5, 2008 (2008-October-05)
Official name AMP Energy 500
Location Talladega Superspeedway, Talladega, Alabama
Course Permanent racing facility
2.66 mi (4.28 km)
Distance 190 laps, 505.4 mi (813.362 km)
Scheduled Distance 188 laps, 500 mi (804.672 km)
Weather Temperatures reaching up to 82.9 °F (28.3 °C); wind speeds up to 6 miles per hour (9.7 km/h)[3]
Average speed 140.281 miles per hour (225.760 km/h)
Pole position
Driver Yates Racing
Time 51.109
Most laps led
Driver Tony Stewart Joe Gibbs Racing
Laps 24
No. 20 Tony Stewart Joe Gibbs Racing
Television in the United States
Network ABC
Announcers Jerry Punch, Dale Jarrett, Andy Petree
Nielsen Ratings
  • 4.6 (Final)
  • 4.0 (Overnight)
  • (7.44 million)[4]

The 2008 AMP Energy 500 was the 30th stock car race of the 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and the fourth in the ten-race, season-ending Chase for the Sprint Cup. It was held on October 5, 2008 at Talladega Superspeedway, in Talladega, Alabama before a crowd of 145,000. Tony Stewart of the Joe Gibbs Racing team won the 190-lap race starting from 34th position; Paul Menard finished second, David Ragan was third.

Travis Kvapil, who had the pole position, led until Carl Edwards passed him on lap nine. The race was first stopped 63 laps later when a multi-car collision was triggered by Brian Vickers, and was restarted 17 minutes later, with Dale Earnhardt Jr. leading the field. A second red-flag period was triggered after Edwards ran into teammate Greg Biffle starting a chain-reaction accident involving a further ten drivers. Stewart led the field for the remainder of the race, until Regan Smith passed him below the yellow line (out of bounds line) on the final lap. Stewart was therefore handed the victory, and Smith was demoted from second to 18th. The race had a total of ten cautions, and 64 lead changes among 28 different drivers, setting a new Sprint Cup Series record.

It was Stewart's first victory of the season, his first at Talladega Superspeedway, and the 33rd of his career. The result advanced him to seventh in the Drivers' Championship, 232 behind leader Jimmie Johnson who extended his lead to 72 points over Edwards. Toyota extended its lead in the Manufacturers' Championship, twelve points ahead of Ford in second place. Chevrolet remained in third with a 41-point advantage over Dodge with six races left in the season. The race attracted 7.44 million television viewers.


Aerial photograph of Talladega Superspeedway
Talladega Superspeedway, where the race was held.

The 2008 AMP Energy 500 was the 30th of 36 scheduled stock car races of the 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, and the fourth in the ten-race season-ending Chase for the Sprint Cup.[1] It was held on October 5, 2008 at Talladega, Alabama at Talladega Superspeedway,[2] a superspeedway that holds NASCAR races.[5] The standard track at the speedway is a four-turn superspeedway that is 2.66 miles (4.28 km) long.[6] The track's turns are banked at thirty-three degrees, while the front stretch, the location of the finish line, is banked at 16.5 degrees. The back stretch has a two-degree banking.[6]

Before the race, Jimmie Johnson led the Drivers' Championship with 5,575 points, with Carl Edwards in second, and Greg Biffle in third. Jeff Burton and Kevin Harvick rounded out the top five, and Jeff Gordon, Clint Bowyer, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Matt Kenseth, Denny Hamlin, Tony Stewart and Kyle Busch rounded out the top twelve drivers competing in the 2008 Chase for the Sprint Cup.[7] In the Manufacturers' Championship, Toyota was leading with 172 points, seven points ahead of their nearest rival Ford in second. Chevrolet was third with 159 points, with Dodge a further 39 points behind in fourth.[8] Gordon was the race's defending champion.[9]

Second-place championship driver Edwards said he expected the top three points leaders to remain together during the race, "I'll probably be glued to Jimmie, no matter where he's at. If him and Greg and I can just stay together, and make sure we either all avoid or either all get in the same wrecks, then we'll probably be all right."[10] Earnhardt said he aimed to achieve his sixth victory at Talladega Superspeedway (where he had a large amount of fan support) in an effort to move ahead in the championship standings.[11] Gordon, who had not won so far during 2008, stated he felt that he could win the race, and employed a strategy where he would attempt to avoid being caught up in a multi-car collision.[12] Johnson felt the AMP Energy 500 would be "interesting" and "a turning point in the chase".[12]

There were two changes of driver before the race. Red Bull Racing Team announced regular driver A. J. Allmendinger would be replaced by Mike Skinner who would drive at Talladega, and by former Scuderia Torro Rosso, Formula One driver Scott Speed who would drive in the seven remaining races of the season. Red Bull Racing vice president and general manager Jay Frye said the change would allow the Red Bull Racing Team to continue its development for the future.[13] Kenny Wallace took over from Michael McDowell in the No. 00 Michael Waltrip Racing car at Talladega, because the team decided to regroup after he failed to qualify the previous race weekend at Kansas Speedway.[14] Richard Childress Racing fielded a fourth car driven by Nationwide Series driver Mike Wallace.[15]

Practice and qualifying

Photograph of a man in his early thirties with a head full of hair, and looking towards the camera.
Travis Kvapil (pictured in 2009) had the first pole position of his career.

Two practice sessions were held before the Sunday race, both on Friday. The first practice session ran for 75 minutes, the second lasted 45 minutes.[1] Burton was fastest in the first practice session with a time of 48.887 seconds; Elliott Sadler was second, and Brian Vickers third. Robby Gordon was fourth, and Harvick placed fifth. Kasey Kahne, Biffle, Jamie McMurray, Skinner and Ryan Newman rounded out the session's top ten drivers.[16] Earnhardt's engine failed, and his team installed a new one. David Ragan did the same between the two practice sessions.[1] Later that day, Vickers paced the final practice session (where thirty-seven drivers competed) with a time of 49.694 seconds, ahead of Kahne and Bobby Labonte. Casey Mears was fourth-fastest, ahead of Harvick, Scott Riggs and David Gilliland. Earnhardt, a Chase for the Sprint Cup driver, was eighth, with Skinner and Stewart ninth and tenth. Earnhardt's right-rear tire exploded while leading a pack of cars at the exit of turn two, nine minutes after the session started, beginning a chain-reaction accident involving cars driven by Gilliland, Stewart, David Reutimann, Hamlin, Clint Bowyer and Kahne, resulting in the session being stopped for 30 minutes. No drivers were injured, but Earnhardt and Gilliland were checked at the infield medical center and later released.[17] Earnhardt, Bowyer, Kahne, Gilliland and Reutimann switched to back-up cars.[1]

Forty-five cars were entered in the qualifier on Saturday afternoon,[1][18] according to NASCAR's qualifying procedure, forty-three were allowed to race. Each driver ran two laps, with the starting order determined by the competitor's fastest times.[1] Travis Kvapil took the first pole position of his career with a time of 51.109 seconds. He was joined on the grid's front row by Mears in his best qualifying performance of the season. Aric Almirola qualified third, his Dale Earnhardt, Inc. teammate Regan Smith was fourth, and Paul Menard started fifth. Mike Wallace, Joe Nemechek, Tony Raines, Vickers and Martin Truex Jr. rounded out the top ten qualifiers. Of the other drivers in the Chase, Edwards was twelfth, Burton 17th and Johnson 20th. The two drivers that failed to qualify were Sam Hornish Jr. and Patrick Carpentier.[19] After the qualifier Kvapil said, "Definitely qualifying doesn't really mean much as far as your chances to win the race after 500 miles, but we got a good pit selection and we'll have less chance to get caught up in a wreck early on in the race. It doesn't take long to get shuffled to the back and I'm sure I'll be shuffled in and out throughout the field. But the first few laps we'll be up front and hopefully keeping it clean."[19] He also stated the pole was "special", and it was the first time Ford had occupied that position at Talladega Superspeedway since 1997.[15]

Qualifying results

Qualifying results
Grid Car Driver Team Manufacturer Time Speed
1 28 Travis Kvapil Yates Racing Ford 51.109 187.364
2 5 Casey Mears Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 51.128 187.295
3 8 Aric Almirola Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet 51.136 187.265
4 01 Regan Smith Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet 51.159 187.181
5 15 Paul Menard Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet 51.170 187.141
6 33 Mike Wallace Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 51.213 186.984
7 78 Joe Nemechek Furniture Row Racing Chevrolet 51.217 186.969
8 70 Tony Raines Haas CNC Racing Chevrolet 51.280 186.740
9 83 Brian Vickers Red Bull Racing Team Toyota 51.289 186.707
10 1 Martin Truex Jr. Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet 51.298 186.674
11 66 Scott Riggs Haas CNC Racing Chevrolet 51.306 186.645
12 99 Carl Edwards Roush Fenway Racing Ford 51.344 186.507
13 42 Juan Pablo Montoya Chip Ganassi Racing Dodge 51.365 186.430
14 00 Kenny Wallace Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 51.365 186.430
15 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 51.367 186.4231
16 6 David Ragan Roush Fenway Racing Ford 51.387 186.3511
17 31 Jeff Burton Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 51.396 186.318
18 09 Sterling Marlin Phoenix Racing Chevrolet 51.410 186.267
19 44 David Reutimann Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 51.420 186.231
20 48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 51.422 186.2241
21 84 Mike Skinner Red Bull Racing Team Toyota 51.466 186.065
22 16 Greg Biffle Roush Fenway Racing Chevrolet 51.467 186.061
23 45 Terry Labonte Petty Enterprises Dodge 51.468 186.057
24 12 Ryan Newman Penske Racing South Dodge 51.499 185.945
25 55 Michael Waltrip Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 51.538 185.805
26 24 Jeff Gordon Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 51.544 185.783
27 21 Jon Wood Wood Brothers Racing Ford 51.544 185.783
28 26 Jamie McMurray Roush Fenway Racing Ford 51.547 185.772
29 22 Dave Blaney Bill Davis Racing Toyota 51.556 185.740
30 41 Reed Sorenson Chip Ganassi Racing Dodge 51.561 185.722
31 17 Matt Kenseth Roush Fenway Racing Ford 51.570 185.689
32 43 Bobby Labonte Petty Enterprises Dodge 51.583 185.643
33 2 Kurt Busch Penske Racing South Dodge 51.613 185.535
34 20 Tony Stewart Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 51.628 158.481
35 07 Clint Bowyer Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 51.644 185.423
36 11 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 51.658 185.373
37 18 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 51.705 185.204
38 9 Kasey Kahne Gillett Evernham Motorsports Dodge 51.758 185.015
39 29 Kevin Harvick Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 51.760 185.008
40 19 Elliott Sadler Gillett Evernham Motorsports Dodge 51.775 184.954
41 38 David Gilliland Yates Racing Ford 51.775 184.954
42 7 Robby Gordon Robby Gordon Motorsports Dodge 51.938 184.374
43 96 Ken Schrader Hall of Fame Racing Toyota 51.557 185.736
Failed to qualify
44 77 Sam Hornish Jr. Penske Racing South Dodge 51.690 185.258
45 10 Patrick Carpentier Gillett Evernham Motorsports Dodge 51.702 185.215
1 Moved to the back of the field for changing engines (#6 ,#88) and for adjustments outside of the impound (#48).


Live television coverage of the race, began at 1:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time in the United States on ABC. At the start of the race, weather conditions were sunny. Fred Cook of Alabama Raceway Ministries began pre-race ceremonies with an invocation. Brad Arnold, the lead singer of rock band 3 Doors Down performed the national anthem,[21] and Pepsi employees Antonio Clements, John Foster, Richard Stuckey, Daniel Harris, Demetrius Blackmon, Reginald Thomas, Kenneth Goodwin, and Raymond Castleberry, who serve in the National Guard commanded the drivers to start their engines. During the pace laps, Earnhardt and Ragan moved to the rear of the field because they had changed their engines; Johnson did the same because his team adjusted his engine outside of the impound.[1]

Picture of man signing his autograph on a chequered flag.
David Ragan led nine laps of the race, and finished third.

The race started at 2:23 p.m. Kvapil maintained his pole position advantage on the first lap, as the field ran three and four abreast during the lap. Mike Wallace led the cars on the outside lane and challenged Kvapil for the lead on lap four, but was unable to get ahead. Edwards and Vickers drove on the outside lane to move to the front on lap nine, and the two exchanged the lead on the backstretch, before Edwards pulled clear of Vickers. Kvapil fell to seventh place by the same lap. Vickers regained the first position on the next lap, after Edwards drove down the track. On the 14th lap, Almirola and his teammate Menard gave each other assistance, and Almirola passed Vickers on the backstretch to take over the lead. Ragan, with assistance from Kvapil, passed Almirola for first place by taking the outside lane three laps later. After falling down the field earlier in the race, Gordon had moved back up to seventh by lap 18. Earnhardt moved into the lead eight laps later, but Kvapil reclaimed the position on lap 30, after receiving assistance from Gordon. Earnhardt retook the lead two laps later, and Johnson had moved to fourth after dropping down the field earlier in the race.[21] Mike Wallace briefly claimed the lead on lap 33 before Earnhardt regained it on the lap.[2][21] The first caution was triggered on the next lap when debris was spotted on the track in turn two.[2][22] Most of the leaders, including Mike Wallace, made pit stops for tires and car adjustments.[21]

Gordon led on the lap-39 restart,[22] followed by Truex and Burton. One lap later, Burton, with assistance from Johnson, passed Gordon for the lead. Kenseth claimed first position on lap 40 after driving on the outside lane. Vickers followed Johnson on the inside line to reclaim the lead on the following lap, before Sadler passed Vickers around the outside for the lead on the 44th lap. On lap 45, Mears led after passing Sadler, and debris was located on the backstretch, triggering a second caution. All drivers, including Mears, elected to make pit stops.[21] Sadler reclaimed first position and led the field back up to speed at the lap-50 restart,[22] ahead of Mears and Kyle Busch. Hamlin and Kyle Busch led the cars driving on the outside lane, with Busch claiming the lead on lap 51, pulling away from the rest of the field. Kurt Busch, with help from Vickers, got ahead of Kyle Busch to move into first place on lap 52.[21]

Jamie McMurray took the lead by the 53rd lap, when a third caution was deployed on lap 54 after Reutimann's right-rear tire blew on the backstretch, causing Gordon to take evasive action by turning right and heavily damaged the nose of his car when he collided with the outside wall. Reutimann's tire broke Johnson's front splitter brace.[21][22][23] All drivers, including McMurray, chose to make pit stops.[21] Vickers elected to stay on the track and led the field at the restart on lap 59,[22] ahead of Kvapil and Skinner. One lap later, Hamlin used the draft to take over the lead, with Labonte moving into second. Kahne used the outside lane to claim first position, before Reed Sorenson also drove on the outside lane to claim first place on the next lap. The pack drove three abreast on lap 63, as Truex moved into first place on the 64th lap. McMurray reclaimed the first position when he got ahead of Truex at the start-finish line on lap 65, and Kahne dropped to 26th position by the same lap. Truex retook the lead from McMurray at the start of the following lap, and Harvick moved into first on lap 67.[21]

Earnhardt moved back into the lead on lap 68, when Vickers' right-front tire blew in the tri-oval on the same lap, starting a multi-car accident involving Gilliland, Truex, Kahne, Skinner, McMurray, Terry Labonte, Raines and Almirola. A fourth caution was triggered initially because of the accident before a red-flag was shown shortly afterward to stop the race to allow officials to clear the track of debris. The race resumed seventeen minutes later as the field elected to make pit stops.[21][24] Earnhardt led on the lap-72 restart, followed by Menard, Burton, Harvick and Montoya. By lap 74, Montoya had the lead before Hamlin passed him at the start-finish line to lead the lap. Johnson moved to the front of the field two laps later, before losing the lead to teammate Earnhardt on lap 78 as the pack ran three abreast at the start-finish line.[21]

Johnson moved back into the lead on lap 78, after receiving assistance from Earnhardt, before losing it to Stewart around the inside two laps later after Stewart was helped by Mike Wallace. On the 81st lap, Mike Wallace's right-rear tire blew causing a fifth caution to be displayed;[21][24] Wallace regained control of his car but his tire struck Michael Waltrip's car forcing him to pit for repairs. Most of the field, including Stewart, elected to make pit stops for tires and fuel.[21] Kyle Busch gained the lead after the pit stops, and led the field back up to speed at the lap-87 restart,[22] followed by Earnhardt. On lap 89, Labonte led the outside lane after he was helped by Earnhardt. Hamlin, Earnhardt and Kenseth traded the first position over the next seven laps. Hamlin's right-front tire exploded in turn two on lap 99 and struck the turn two outside wall, triggering a sixth caution. The leaders, including Kyle Busch, who took the lead before the caution, made pit stops for tires and fuel.[21][24]

Hamlin was extracted from his car, and placed on a stretcher and transported to a local hospital for further evaluation.[21] Riggs led the field back up to speed at the restart on lap 105, ahead of Menard.[22] On the same lap, Riggs lost the draft allowing Menard to move into the lead. The field went three abreast, as Menard lost the lead to Stewart on the 107th lap, but Menard reclaimed the position one lap later. Stewart retook the lead on lap 112 after he received assistance from Montoya. Burton challenged Stewart for the lead on lap 115 as both drivers ran side by side at the start-finish line, before Burton moved in front of Stewart two laps later. Harvick moved back into the lead on lap 120, after running on the inside lane. Harvick, Ragan and Stewart formed a single line, as the rest of the field ran in double-file.[21]

Image of man in his forties, wearing sunglasses and with a shaved beard.
Tony Stewart (pictured in 2015) won his first race of the season.

A seventh caution was triggered on lap 138 when Gordon had smoke and fluid coming out of his car, ending his race. Most of the field, including Harvick, elected to pit under caution. Edwards spun after he left pit road but avoided damage to his car.[21][24] During the pit stop period, the record for the most leaders in a Sprint Cup Series race was broken when Nemechek led one lap (the 27th race leader) before pitting.[21][n 1] Kyle Busch led on the lap-145 restart,[24] followed by Ragan, Kvapil, Stewart and Johnson. Four laps later, Johnson dropped from fifth to the rear of the field, as part of a strategy to run at the rear until the race ended. Kyle Busch lost the draft on lap 151, allowing Earnhardt to retake first place. Burton, with assistance from Richard Childress Racing teammates Bowyer, Harvick and Mike Wallace, moved back into the lead on lap 156. Ragan took over the lead on lap 160, after he was helped by Earnhardt.[21]

Waltrip took the lead on lap 163, and an eighth caution was necessitated on lap 165 when Biffle made contact with Ragan, who hit Harvick, who spun heading into turn three but avoided hitting the barriers or other cars. Some drivers, including Waltrip, chose to pit for fresh tires and fuel during the caution.[21][24] Montoya elected not to pit, and led the field at the restart on lap 170.[22][24] The top six drivers quickly began to pull away from the rest of the field, as Stewart ran fourth and Harvick 16th by lap 172. Stewart and Montoya ran alongside each other at the line on lap 173, before Stewart moved in front for the lead one lap later. On the same lap, a second multi-car accident occurred necessitating a ninth caution when Edwards made contact with teammate Biffle going into turn three, and collected, Earnhardt, Harvick, Kyle Busch, Nemechek, Sorenson, Kenseth, Kvapil, Watrip, Dave Blaney and Montoya.[21][24] The second red-flag of the race was shown shortly afterward to allow officials to clear debris from the track. The race was restarted twelve minutes later, as some drivers made pit stops.[21][27]

Stewart led the field back up to speed at the lap-179 restart,[22] ahead of Nemechek and Sadler. Stewart and Nemechek pulled away from the rest of the field, but Nemechek lost the draft on the next lap and fell behind Sadler. The field formed into a single file, and remained this way until a tenth and final caution of the race was deployed because McMurray's right-rear tire failed on lap 185.[21][28] The race restarted on lap 189,[2] for a green-white-checker finish (extending the race to 190 laps) with Stewart leading Smith. The field again formed a single line, with most drivers remaining in that formation for the rest of the race. On the final lap, Smith passed Stewart on the frontstretch below the yellow line, and crossed the start-finish line ahead of Stewart. NASCAR determined that Smith was out of track bounds, handing Stewart the victory with Smith provisionally in second.[21] The race had a total of ten cautions and 64 lead changes by 28 drivers. Stewart led four different times for a total of 24 laps, more than any other competitor.[2]

Post-race comments

A man in his twenties wearing a white and blue baseball cap, and a black racing suit.
Regan Smith (pictured in 2007) who was demoted from second to eighteenth for passing Stewart below the yellow line.

Stewart, who earned $270,136 for the victory,[29] appeared in victory lane to celebrate his first win of the season, and his first at Talladega Superspeedway,[30] in front of a crowd of 145,000.[2] He was delighted to take the victory: "It's one thing to get back to Victory Lane, but to do it at Talladega wow."[31] Stewart continued, "I've wanted to win here for so long. This hasn't been one of my favorite places on the fan side. People haven't always liked me here. But this was for those guys up in the stands today."[32] Second-place finisher Menard was pleased with his result, saying he had a good car throughout the duration of the race: "Car had speed in it all day. Didn't make any chassis adjustments, just did a little bit of air pressure after the first run to free it up. It was just all track position really."[33] In the post-race press conference, third-place finisher Ragan said that he felt that he had a car which could have secured the victory under the right circumstances, but believed it was a good day for his team: "We always seem to be pretty fast here on the superspeedway track, so that just goes to show you how much effort our Roush Fenway team is putting into this program."[34]

NASCAR officials reviewed video evidence of Smith's pass of Stewart on the final lap with Smith and Dale Earnhardt, Inc. president Max Siegel in attendance, and declared the manoeuvre illegal; Smith was issued a pass-through penalty which dropped him from second to 18th.[35] Smith argued that he was forced down below the yellow line: "I was always told that the rule is if you get forced down there, then you are the winner of the race, and on the last lap, anything goes. That’s what I was going with. I had a nose inside of him and I could have piled up the whole field."[30] Ninth-place finisher Johnson said there were rumors that drivers were allowed to go below the yellow line on the last lap of the previous day's Craftsman Truck Series race which were circulated on the day of the AMP Energy 500: "I didn’t know what to really think about it, or understood it, or had seen it. It’s ironic how it played out today.”[25]

NASCAR spokesperson Jim Hunter however insisted Smith was not forced below the yellow line, and stated drivers were warned beforehand in the pre-race drivers' meeting about gaining a position illegally.[36] Earnhardt said he felt Smith deserved to win, saying there was a lack of clarity over what going below the yellow line meant.[37] Smith stated he did not ask for clarification of the rule because of his low-profile status.[35] NASCAR president Mike Helton stated that race officials had correctly awarded the penalty to Smith, and clarified that no driver would be allowed to advance their position by going below the yellow line at any time during a race.[38] Similarities were made between Smith's overtake, and Earnhardt's pass of Kenseth below the yellow line at Talladega at the 2003 Aaron's 499.[36]

Hamlin was kept in hospital overnight for further evaluation, but complained of a headache and favored his right foot after exiting his car. His crew chief Mike Ford revealed Hamlin's right-rear tire had been cut on the run before his crash which Hamlin later attributed to running over debris on track.[39] Vickers described his right-front tire failure saying: "It sounded like a bomb exploded."[31] Goodyear's product manager Rick Heinrich said the tires used in the race were the same from the Aaron's 499, and conducted an analysis of the tire failures at their plant in Akron, Ohio.[39] Edwards admitted he was at fault for causing the crash between himself and teammate Biffle on lap 174, and apologized to the drivers caught up in the incident. Biffle revealed he was unable to steer his Ford away from the incident.[35]

The result kept Johnson in the lead of the Drivers' Championship, seventy-two points ahead of Edwards. Biffle and Burton maintained third and fourth positions, while Bowyer moved up to fifth. Harvick moved up into sixth, with Stewart's victory advancing him from eleventh to seventh place. Gordon, Kenseth, Earnhardt, Kyle Busch and Hamlin rounded out the top twelve.[40] In the Manufacturers' Championship, Toyota extended their lead over Ford to twelve points. Chevrolet remained in third with 165, 41 points ahead of Dodge.[8] The race attracted a television audience of 7.44 million people.[4] It took three hours, thirty-six minutes and ten seconds to complete the event, and the margin of victory was 0.052 seconds.[2]

Race results

Race results
Pos Grid Car Driver Team Manufacturer Laps Run Points
1 34 20 Tony Stewart Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 190 1952
2 5 15 Paul Menard Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet 190 1751
3 16 6 David Ragan Roush Fenway Racing Ford 190 1701
4 17 31 Jeff Burton Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 190 1651
5 35 07 Clint Bowyer Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 190 155
6 32 43 Bobby Labonte Petty Enterprises Dodge 190 150
7 11 66 Scott Riggs Haas CNC Racing Dodge 190 1511
8 42 7 Robby Gordon Robby Gordon Motorsports Dodge 190 142
9 20 48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 190 1431
10 40 19 Elliott Sadler Gillett Evernham Motorsports Dodge 190 1391
11 7 78 Joe Nemechek Furniture Row Racing Chevrolet 190 1351
12 14 00 Kenny Wallace Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 190 1321
13 3 8 Aric Almirola Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet 190 1291
14 2 5 Casey Mears Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 190 1261
15 37 18 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 190 1231
16 43 96 Ken Schrader Hall of Fame Racing Toyota 190 115
17 23 45 Terry Labonte Petty Enterprises Dodge 190 112
18 4 01 Regan Smith Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet 190 1093
19 25 55 Michael Waltrip Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 187 1111
20 39 29 Kevin Harvick Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 179 1081
21 33 2 Kurt Busch Penske Racing South Dodge 177 1051
22 29 22 Dave Blaney Bill Davis Racing Toyota 176 97
23 30 41 Reed Sorenson Chip Ganassi Racing Dodge 175 991
24 22 16 Greg Biffle Roush Fenway Racing Ford 174 961
25 13 42 Juan Pablo Montoya Chip Ganassi Racing Dodge 173 931
26 31 17 Matt Kenseth Roush Fenway Racing Ford 173 901
27 1 28 Travis Kvapil Yates Racing Ford 173 871
28 15 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 173 841
29 12 99 Carl Edwards Roush Fenway Racing Ford 173 811
30 6 33 Mike Wallace Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 169 73
31 21 84 Mike Skinner Red Bull Racing Team Toyota 160 70
32 28 26 Jamie McMurray Roush Fenway Racing Ford 159 721
33 27 21 Jon Wood Wood Brothers Racing Ford 154 64
34 8 70 Tony Raines Haas CNC Racing Chevrolet 148 61
35 9 83 Brian Vickers Red Bull Racing Team Toyota 134 631
36 38 9 Kasey Kahne Gillett Evernham Motorsports Dodge 112 601
37 19 44 David Reutimann Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 110 52
38 26 24 Jeff Gordon Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 104 541
39 36 11 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 98 511
40 41 38 David Gilliland Yates Racing Ford 68 43
41 10 1 Martin Truex Jr. Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet 68 451
42 18 09 Sterling Marlin Phoenix Racing Chevrolet 68 37
43 24 12 Ryan Newman Penske Racing South Dodge 48 34
1 Includes five bonus points for leading a lap
2 Includes ten bonus points for leading the most laps
3 Demoted from second to eighteenth for passing below the yellow line

Standings after the race

Notes and references


  1. ^ The previous record was 26 leaders jointly held by the 1986 Talladega 500 and the 2001 Talladega 500.[25] It was further surpassed with 29 leaders at the 2010 Aaron's 499.[26]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "The Race: AMP Energy Drink 500". Jayski's Silly Season Site. ESPN Internet Ventures. Archived from the original on November 30, 2008. Retrieved January 6, 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "2008 AMP Energy 500". Racing-Reference. USA Today Media Sports Group. Archived from the original on June 15, 2016. Retrieved January 7, 2016.
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