(WOMR file photo)
In the first two races of the year Tony Stewart did not even remotely look like the defending 2011 Sprint Cup champion. However, both Tony Stewart and new crew chief, Steve Addingtion, showed the other 42 drivers that they are still hungry for more victories in the 2012 race season.
The Stewart-Haas Racing #14 Office Depot Chevy dominated the race for most of the last half of the 267 lap race, and thereby giving Smoke his very first victory at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. By doing so, Stewart went on to win his first race of the 2012 race season. That victory Sunday took some of the pressure off of brand new crew chief, Steve Addington. Addington came over to SHR after Stewart and terminated crew chief, Darian Grubb, won 5 of the 1o Chase faces to close out the season and secure the 2011 Sprint cup championship. That level of domination in the Chase had never been accomplished in Chase history.
In the first half of the race it appeared that the Kobalt Tools 400 was Dale Earnhardt,Jr.’s to win. He folk the lead on the first lap and racked up more than 50 laps in the front of the other 42 drivers. However, a very unusual pit stop call, taking 4 tires when the entire field took only 2 tires, resulted in Dale Jr. losing about 20 spots coming out of the pits. From that pit stop forward, Earnhardt was mired back in the pack, where passing was at a premium. Nevertheless, by race end Earnhardt slithered through the pack, thereby rallying to secure a 10th place finish!
From a personal standpoint, the weather for the race at LVMS was ideal. There was a thin layer of cirrus clouds keeping the track temperatures very mild. There was a very slight wind steady wind that came from turn four heading to turn one, and finally the ambient temperature hovered around the low 70’s. All in all, some very ideal race conditions in Las Vegas this past weekend!
Check out the unofficial results for the Kobalt Tools 400.
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!