Sunday, November 20, 2011

Tony Stewart Wins the 2011 Sprint Cup and the Ford 400

Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images for NASCAR


Points battle ends in tie – Stewart held tie-breaker to win Sprint Cup Championship

Tony Stewart won the Ford 400 tying the points with Carl Edwards. Owning the tie breaker (most wins) Stewart won the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup championship and became the first owner/driver since Alan Kulwicki won in 1992.


Stewart claimed his third NASCAR championship (previous ones were 2002 and 2005) and finishes the season with 19th top-10 finish in 2011.


After the race, Edwards spoke with members of the media on his defeat. With a 4.9 average finish throughout the Chase, Edwards simply said, “We were one point shy. That's just the way it is.''
Giving it his all, Edwards and Stewart jockeyed for track and points position all night long. "I drove to the edge and beyond. That's all I had.''


As he climbed from his car and spoke to ESPN, Edwards said "This night is about Tony Stewart. Those guys rose to the occasion. They beat us fair and square. That's as hard as I can drive. I told my wife, 'If I can't win this thing, I'm going to be the best loser NASCAR's ever had.' " As for what Edwards said to crew chief Bob Osborne as they spoke after the race, Edwards said, “I wanted to make sure that Bob knew that I believe he's the best crew chief & will be my crew chief as long as he wants to be and I'm behind his decision 100 percent.''


This win was not as easy victory for Stewart, having damage to his grille early he was forced to pit multiple times. Starting as far back as 40th position, Stewart went on to pass a total of 118 cars throughout his path to victory.


After the way those first 109 laps went today, said Stewart from Victory Lane. “I could not be more proud. We had the problem early and had the hole in the nose, everybody on this Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevy team did a great job of getting it back going, then we had the contact with (David) Reutimann and had to come back in and fix it again. I told them “Man, it is really going to make these guys mad when we come back twice and still kick their butt”. It was optimism and trying to keep the guys pumped up and then to come out here and actually do it, is awesome.”


“We just fought. This Office Depot/Mobil 1 team is just incredible,” said Darian Grubb, Stewart’s crew chief. “We just didn’t give up. We kept fighting. We went out and earned this championship and showed we’re true champions.”


Stay tuned tomorrow for more race recaps in the Skirts and Scuffs Chase recaps.


Race results:
1. Tony Stewart
2. Carl Edwards
3. Martin Truex Jr.
4. Matt Kenseth
5. Jeff Gordon
6. Clint Bowyer
7. Kasey Kahne
8. Kevin Harvick
9. Denny Hamlin
10. Jeff Burton
11. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
12. Ryan Newman
13. Regan Smith
14. Jamie McMurray
15. A.J. Allmendinger
16. Paul Menard
17. Brian Vickers
18. David Reutimann
19. Joey Logano
20. Brad Keselowski
21. Mike Bliss
22. Travis Kvapil
23. Kyle Busch
24. Mark Martin
25. Trevor Bayne
26. Casey Mears
27. Bobby Labonte
28. Dave Blaney
29. T J Bell
30. Geoffrey Bodine
31. Juan Pablo Montoya
32. Jimmie Johnson
33. David Gilliland
34. Kurt Busch
35. Greg Biffle
36. Landon Cassill
37. Cole Whitt
38. David Ragan
39. Marco Ambrose
40. Joe Nemechek
41. JJ Yeley
42. David Stremme
43. Michael McDowell

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