2007 Bank of America 500


2007 Bank of America 500

The 2007 Bank of America 500, the 31st race of the 2007 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup season, and the fifth race of the 2007 Chase for the NEXTEL Cup, was run on Saturday, October 13, 2007 at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina, a suburb of Charlotte. This race was the only Saturday night race in the Chase schedule for 2007.

Pre race news

*Ricky Rudd made his return to the #88 Yates Racing Ford after missing the previous five weeks due to a separated shoulder suffered in an accident during the Sharp AQUOS 500.
*In this week's Worst Kept NASCAR Secret, Patrick Carpentier was signed to drive the #10 Gillett Evernham Motorsports Dodge for the 2008 season.
*NASCAR upheld Carl Edwards' 25-point penalty assessed against him at the Dover fall race.
*Greg Biffle's #16 Roush Fenway Racing Ford will have a new sponsor in 2008, as 3M becomes the primary sponsor, replacing Ameriquest, citing financial difficulties with the mortage market.
*Dale Jarrett will officially retire from full-time competition, and hand the wheel of the Michael Waltrip Racing #44 Toyota Camry to David Reutimann. In addition, MWR will have additional financial support from a new partial owner for 2008 in the form of financier Robert Kauffman, which was announced Friday (October 12). Jarrett will race six times in 2008 before likely going full time to ESPN as a race anaylist. Reutimann will move from the #00 car to the #44 starting with the spring race at Texas.
*There were two pink cars in the field to help raise awareness for breast cancer on the track in the race. The Yates Racing #38 Ford of David Gilliland sponsored by M&Ms and the #43 Petty Enterprises Dodge of Bobby Labonte sponsored by General Mills' Cheerios will be in the pink hue for the race.

Qualifying

With a lap of 28.512 sec at a speed of 189.394 mph, "Rocketman" Ryan Newman won his fifth pole of the 2007 season. Chase points leader Jeff Gordon started 4th right behind Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jimmie Johnson, who started 2nd on the outside pole. Defending winner Kasey Kahne started fifth, and Coke 600 winner Casey Mears started 9th.

Failed to Qualify: #44-Dale Jarrett, #78-Joe Nemechek, #83-Brian Vickers, #06-Sam Hornish Jr., #08-Carl Long, #27-Kirk Shelmerdine

Race

Like the previous Chase races at Dover, Kansas, and most recently at Talladega, a great portion of the 12 Chase drivers would have trouble. Many analysts expected defending champion Jimmie Johnson to walk away with another Charlotte victory, as he had won three consecutive 600's, including two sweeps in 2004 and 2005. He continued with his domination, leading 95 of 337 laps before an unexpected spin on lap 231 took him out of contention. His teammate, points leader Jeff Gordon picked up the lead, trading it with teammate Kyle Busch and Clint Bowyer. After an oil spill by Jeff Green, Gordon and Busch began experiencing fuel pickup problems. Fearing a wreck, owner Rick Hendrick told Kyle to race Gordon clean. Although he attempted a "bump and run" on Gordon, it gave Ryan Newman the opportunity to shoot back into the lead. Ryan had victory in his sights until he surprisingly spun out with 3 to go, giving the lead back to Gordon, who had not finished a Lowe's race since 2004. However, Gordon would hold off Bowyer and Busch for his first Lowe's win since 1999.

Results

Top Ten Results: "(NOTE: Chase drivers are in bold italics.)"

Issues with ABC stations

KTKA, the ABC affiliate in Topeka, Kansas, did not air the final six laps of the race, leaving at 10 p.m. Central time (after a red-flag delay) and not returning. A full local newscast replaced it. Ironically, Bowyer is originally from Emporia, Kansas, about 50 miles away.

KSAT, the affiliate for San Antonio, Texas, also broke away at 10 p.m. CT for news, but returned about five minutes later in time for the end of the race.

At least three other affiliates - KABC, Los Angeles; KOCO, Oklahoma City; and WPLG, Miami - had not aired "NASCAR Countdown" before the race, in favor of local news.


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