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Last Updated Monday, Aug 21, 2006 1:18 am, EDT

Race Capsule

Watkins Glen International
  • What:

    Race 24 of 38 on Sprint Cup circuit

  • Where:

    Watkins Glen International, Watkins Glen, NY

  • When:

    August 13, 2006 1:35 pm EDT

  • Laps:

    90

  • Track Length:

    2.45 miles

  • Race Length:

    221.00 miles

  • Purse:

    $4,705,975

Drivers to Watch

Kasey Kahne Early Chase favorite has struggled of late, placing outside the top 20 in five of his last six starts and falling seven spots to 11th in the standings; trails Earnhardt by 37 points for the 10th and final berth in "the Chase"; hopes to bounce back from disappointing 36th-place finish at Indianapolis, where he crashed in the final lap to miss a chance at a top-10 spot; finished eighth at New Hampshire to end a skid of three consecutive races outside of the top 20; is tied with Johnson for the series lead with four wins; registered his second consecutive seventh-place finish at this season's Pocono 500 and captured the checkered flag at the Coca-Cola 600; has registered six top-five finishes and 11 top-10s this season; won the Samsung/RadioShack 500 to record his third career victory; also visited Victory Lane at Atlanta after registering consecutive fourth-place finishes at California and Las Vegas; placed 17th in this race last season.
Jeff Gordon Finished 16th at Indianapolis and climbed to eighth in the standings with 2,627 points, 52 ahead of Kahne; ran third at Pocono and placed 15th at New Hampshire; made bold late move at Chicagoland, bumping Matt Kenseth in lap 263 and going on to win the USG Sheetrock 400, his second victory in three weeks; continued his dominance on road courses by winning at California; it was the first victory in the last 20 races for Gordon, whose previous best finish this year was a second at the season-opening Daytona 500; the four-time Nextel Cup champion has been obscured this season by Hendrick Motorsports teammate and current points leader Jimmie Johnson; ran 14th in this event last season and has dominated at this track, registering four victories, two poles, six top-five finishes and seven top-10s in 13 career starts.
Jimmie Johnson Has a series-leading 17 top-10 finishes and has placed inside the top 12 in all but two races this season; captured the checkered flag at Indianapolis last week to become just the second driver in NASCAR history to win at Daytona and the Brickyard in the same season; increased his standings lead to 107 points over Matt Kenseth; also drove to victory this season at Talladega, Las Vegas and the season-opening Daytona 500; also won the Nextel All-Star Challenge at Lowe's Motor Speedway; absolutely dominated the circuit over the first six races, registering two victories among five finishes inside the top six; placed fifth in this race last season and has two top-five finishes in four career starts here.
Kevin Harvick Has placed inside the top 10 in seven of his last nine races and is tied with Kyle Busch for fourth in the standings with 2,733 points, just 16 behind Burton and 21 ahead of Martin; climbed three spots in the standings after running fifth at Pocono, his third consecutive top-five finish; captured the checkered flag at Phoenix on April 22, his only victory this season; placed 15th in this event last season and has three top-10 finishes in five starts at this track.
Tony Stewart Rebounded from poor start at Indianapolis to finish eighth, his 11th top-10 finish this season; climbed one spot to ninth in the standings and trails Gordon by eight points for eighth place; bounced back from consecutive poor performances by running seventh at Pocono; struggled in the two weeks after winning the Pepsi 400 at Daytona, finishing 37th at New Hampshire and 32nd at Chicagoland; defending series champion persevered through a right shoulder injury to finish third at this year's Pocono 500, one of his eight top-five finishes this season; crashed in both the Nextel and Busch races at Charlotte and suffered from a fractured right scapula; was runner-up to Johnson at Talladega, his second straight second-place finish; won his first race of the season at Martinsville; won this race last season, his third victory at this track in seven career starts.
Kyle Busch Finished seventh at Indianapolis but fell into fourth-place tie in the standings with Kevin Harvick, who ran third; trails Burton by 16 points for third place and owns a 21-point lead over Mark Martin, who is sixth; has seven top-five finishes and 11 top-10s this season, his second on the circuit; captured the checkered flag at New Hampshire, his first victory this season and third career; ran third at Chicagoland one week after placing second at Daytona; ran just 33rd in this event last season.
Denny Hamlin Finished 10th at Indianapolis and climbed one spot to seventh in the standings; trails Martin by 64 points for sixth place and owns a 21-point lead over Gordon, who is in eighth; captured the checkered flag three weeks ago at Pocono, his second career victory; became the second rookie in series history to win both races at a single track and the sixth driver to complete a season sweep of both Pocono races; finished sixth at New Hampshire; leads Clint Bowyer by 41 points for first place in the Raybestos Rookie of the Year standings; was runner-up to Earnhardt at Richmond and won the season-opening Budweiser Shootout, a non-points event.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. Placed sixth at Indianapolis and climbed one spot to 10th in the standings with 2,612 points, just 37 ahead of Kasey Kahne for the last spot in "the Chase"; trails Tony Stewart by just seven points for ninth place and is 15 behind Jeff Gordon for eighth place; ran 43rd at Pocono, completing just 26 laps; finished last at New Hampshire, completing just 34 laps before withdrawing with engine trouble; ran fifth at Chicagoland; captured the checkered flag at Richmond, his first victory of the season that snapped a string of 27 starts without a victory; has placed inside the top 15 in 15 of 21 races this season; ran 10th in this event last season, his third top-10 finish in six career starts here.
Jeff Burton Veteran driver continues his quiet pursuit of a spot in "the Chase" with consistent performances; struggled down the stretch after starting from the pole at Indianapolis but still managed a 15th-place finish; remained third in the standings but trails leader Jimmie Johnson by 375 points; owns a 16-point lead over Kyle Busch and Kevin Harvick, who are tied for fourth; ran ninth at Pocono, his ninth top-10 finish in the last 11 races; has placed inside the top 15 in each of his last 15 races, including 11 top-10 finishes over that span; ran second from the pole at Chicagoland, his best finish of the season; finished just 43rd here last season, withdrawing after crashing on lap 32; has just three top-10 finishes in 12 career starts at this track.
Mark Martin Ran fifth at Indianapolis and remained sixth in the standings; trails Harvick and Kyle Busch by 21 points for fourth place; finished fourth at New Hampshire to end a streak of five consecutive races outside the top 10; has four top-five finishes and 10 top-10s this season; was runner-up to Kahne at Atlanta, his best finish this season; ran seventh in this event last season and has fared well here, recording three victories, three poles, 12 top-five finishes and 16 top-10s in 18 career starts; veteran driver always has fared well on road courses, registering 20 top-five finishes and 32 top-10s in his last 40 road-course starts.
Carl Edwards Has struggled this season and has almost no chance at qualifying for "the Chase"; ran ninth at Indianapolis but remained 14th in the standings and trails Earnhardt by 232 points for the final Chase berth; struggled to 39th-place finish at Pocono and was runner-up to Kyle Busch to complete a thrilling triple-duty weekend at New Hampshire, where he won the Busch race on Saturday and also competed in a Whelen Modified event; recovered nicely from a slow start this season, registering six top-10 finishes in nine races from April 22-June 25; finished 19th in this event last season.
Matt Kenseth Was runner-up to Johnson at Indianapolis, his third second-place finish this season; trails Johnson by 107 points in the standings; has placed outside the top 10 in five of his last seven starts; registered second consecutive 14th-place finish at Pocono; appeared primed to win at Chicagoland before getting bumped by Gordon with four laps remaining en route to a 22nd-place finish; after three straight top-five finishes from May 28-June 11, ran 13th and 17th the next two weeks; leads the circuit with 11 top-five finishes; placed 18th in this race last season and has three top-10 finishes in six career starts at this track.
Greg Biffle Defending series runner-up is in serious jeopardy of missing the cutoff for "the Chase for the Championship" this season; has placed outside the top 10 in four of his last five races and currently is 12th in the Nextel Cup standings with 2,497 points, 115 outside of the top 10; struggled to 33rd place last Sunday in the Allstate 400 at the Brickyard in Indianapolis; ran third at New Hampshire, his fifth top-five finish this year; rebounded nicely from poor finish at Daytona by running 11th at Chicagoland; registered seven straight top-10 finishes from May 6-June 25; captured his first victory of the season at the Dodge Charger 500 at Darlington Raceway on May 13; ran 38th in this event last season.