Flashback Friday…2008 Pepsi 500

Box Score

 

Sometimes sports anchors and analysts make things sound competitive when they really aren’t.  Take this for example. There is a raging debate in NASCAR Nation on whether or not one driver, or another is the greatest of all-time.  On this day, in the heat of the California Summer, there is no doubt who the best is.  Rarely ever do you see this type of domination in a sport built on parity and competitiveness.  (If you have the time, and want to see the whole event, click here.)

Jimmie Johnson showed up at his home state track in Fontana.  He cruised to the pole position in qualifying.  He was unable to lead the first lap, but after that, he led all but 21 other laps in the 250 lap event.  Johnson’s crew had an uncharacteristically bad day on pit road, but on the wide multi-lane track, Jimmie put the team on his shoulders and perfected the strategy of driving really fast, and turning left.

This race is also notable for the crazy cautions due to, well the caution system.  The lights fell onto the track early on.  Then, a little bit later, one of the covers fell off another caution lighting rig.  I know they always say, cautions breed cautions, but this was ridiculous.  It reminds me of what we just witnessed at Bristol last Sunday night.  You know, when the caution light magically came on when no one pressed it…hmmm.

It’s hard to say anyone else pressured Johnson in this event, but the crew for Greg Biffle gave him lightning fast pit stops and kept him in contention.  He was able to lead the second most laps in the race with 12.  That is 228-12.  This race was race 25 in the 2008 season.  This is back when Auto Club Speedway hosted two events a year.  Coming into this event, Kyle Busch led Carl Edwards by 212 points.  This race had very negligible effects on the standings.  Especially since after the next race in Richmond, the Chase field was reset.  Leaving California, Busch, who came home seventh,  had a 208 point lead over Edwards who finished sixth.  Jimmie Johnson was third, 369 points out of the lead.  Jimmie began his march to title #3 in dominating fashion in sunny California back in 2008.

So what is in store this week?  Here’s to hoping the madness happens on the track and that these prophetic words ring true.

Remember to tune into KORN Country 100.3 for Sprint Cup action beginning at 2 PM this Sunday afternoon.

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