BRISTOL, Tenn. -- A week ago, Kasey Kahne dominated the race at Las Vegas but problems on his final pit stop kept him out of victory lane.
But Sunday at Bristol Motor Speedway, he took advantage of a mistake by defending Sprint Cup champion Brad Keselowski on the final restart of the Food City 500 to grab the lead. That helped Kahne pull away to a 1.7-second win over pole-sitter Kyle Busch.
Busch spent the last 35 laps just trying to hold off Keselowski in a spirited battle for the runner-up spot. The heated duel between Busch and Keselowski allowed Kahne to pull away for the win.
Kurt Busch made a late-race charge to finish fourth, followed by Clint Bowyer, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Ryan Newman, Brian Vickers, Paul Menard and Jamie McMurray.
The race was dominated by Kyle Busch and teammate Denny Hamlin in the first 250 laps, but Jeff Gordon gambled on a two-two stop to vault into the lead on lap 324.
That's when the race got really exciting.
Joey Logano tried repeatedly to get around Gordon. And he was still trying to take the lead when Hamlin joined the battle for the top spot.
On lap 347, Logano went low once again to try to get by Gordon. But as he slid back up the track, he was clipped by Hamlin. Moments later, Hamlin clipped Logano again, turning Logano sideways and backward into the wall.
This led to a heated exchange on pit road after the race when Logano went to express his displeasure with Hamlin. A member of Hamlin's crew pushed Logano away from Hamlin's car and the two crews started pushing and shoving before NASCAR got things cooled down.
On the restart following the caution for the Logano spin, Matt Kenseth moved into second place and had closed to Gordon's bumper when disaster struck for both drivers.
With 110 laps to go, Gordon went low to pass the lapped car of Terry Labonte when the right-front tire on Gordon's blew out. This sent Gordon up into the wall right in front of Kenseth, who slammed so hard into Gordon's car that he lifted the rear wheels off the ground.
Keselowski became the leader.
And for the next 50 laps, it was Keselowski and Kahne dueling for the top spot.
With 48 laps remaining, Jimmie Johnson had a right-front tire blow out to bring out another caution.
As is the norm, Keselowski took the high lane on the restart. But he spun his wheels as the green flag came out with Hamlin plowing into the back of him. This allowed Kahne and Busch to roar by into the top two spots.
With Keselowski trying over and over again to get back to second, Kahne was able to cruise to his first win of the season.