Bank of America 500

Jay Hart
Yahoo! Sports

How the race was won

Jeff Burton
Jeff Burton

Burton A big gamble. With the lead in hand and final pit stops coming with about 35 laps to go, Burton and crew opted to take fuel only, while just about everyone chasing him took two or four tires. Burton at first looked like a sitting duck to Jimmie Johnson, who was in second. But as has been the case on the 1.5-mile tracks all season, clean air is king, and once Burton had it he was able to stay in the lead.

Stories of the race

Carl Edwards bows out: In a matter of moments, Edwards went from battling for the lead to sitting on pit road, his engine refusing to fire. He fell 16 laps down early and wound up taking a huge hit in the points standings.

Pit road mishaps: Tony Stewart and Kyle Busch both had strong cars but hurt their chances when both were caught speeding on their final pit stops. That took them out of contention to challenge for the win.

Why not gamble?

No one is going to beat Jimmie Johnson straight up. No, to beat him, you're going to have to take a chance. Jeff Burton did and won. Jeff Gordon didn't and lost. Go figure.

Harvick vs. Edwards

Carl Edwards
Carl Edwards

Edwards In case you've been asleep since the presidential debate, Kevin Harvick and Carl Edwards got into a shoving match Thursday. Edwards got the worst of it, having been put in a choke hold by a member of Harvick's crew. Still, if I had to pick, I'd go with Edwards on this one.

Grading the race

Not too bad for a 1.5-miler, which have been miserable this season, though we still saw the leader run away from the field following every caution flag. The battle between Burton and Johnson at the end of the race provided the best action. There wasn't much else to get excited about, though. Grade: B-

From the source

Jeff Gordon: "It's unbelievable how good my car drove out in front. It was on rails. And it was like having the best car, and then like having the worst car, when I was five or six cars back. That's just going to come down to track position and I think Jeff Burton and those guys played a great race. They had a great car and they won the race. Hats off to them. But I was really frustrated with that."

Jimmie Johnson: "That's a decent (points) margin. Heck, we're only halfway through it. I was (down) more than that after Talladega. But it took other guys having problems to let me into it. So if we go clean, that's going to be really tough for the 99 (Edwards) to overcome. But if we all have trouble, then he's right back in it."

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