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Mr. October is warming up for another NASCAR October -- Jimmie Johnson routs the field at Dover

  Jimmie Johnson got great pit work too. Crew chief Chad Knaus is on his game, just like his driver (Photo: Getty Images for NASCAR)

   By Mike Mulhern

   DOVER, Del.
   The best-kept secret in NASCAR racing is obviously held by GM's Chevy teams, because once again they routed the field, this time Jimmie Johnson taking the win in Sunday's Dover 400 in a route.
   And teammate Mark Martin rallied late to take second and will head this week to Kansas City for next Sunday's third round of the sport's 10-race playoffs still the Sprint Cup tour leader, by 10 points over Johnson. "We were just off a little bit, and it showed on the restarts," Martin said. "But I'm proud how well we hit it. Still, it's just two races into the chase...and we've got eight more to go. And eight races is a lot of racing. However a first (at Loudon) and a second, that's a pretty good start."
    Chevy's Juan Pablo Montoya had another great run, finishing fourth, in his historic title bid.
    But it wasn't a great day for car owner, and former NFL coach Joe Gibbs – Joey Logano had a frightening crash, Kyle Busch kept hitting the wall, and chase contender Denny Hamlin was a non-factor all afternoon…and the Washington Redskins lost.
   Matt Kenseth was the strongest Ford driver, ironic since he missed the chase.
  In the overall championship picture:
  -- Brian Vickers had another mediocre race, 18th.
  -- Kasey Kahne didn't really have much to offer either, but did finish eighth.
  -- Hamlin was way off the pace, 22nd.
  -- Teammates Carl Edwards (11th) and Greg Biffle (13th) never got in the game, stretching the Ford mystery for yet another week.
  -- Tony Stewart, after being involved in an early crash, recovered to finish ninth. Teammate Ryan Newman worked his tail off to finish 10th.
  -- Kurt Busch, who is losing crew chief Pat Tryson at the end of the season, ran very strong, for the second straight week, fifth.
  -- Jeff Gordon had a good run going until a slow pit stop late, when an air gun broke; but he came back to finish sixth.
   Dover 400: Nice crowd, not a sellout, but very good. However Jimmie Johnson was all but untouchable (Photo: Getty Images for NASCAR)

                  The Dover AAA 400 Sunday 9/27/2009 at Dover International Speedway


Congrats to Allmendinger on a

Congrats to Allmendinger on a solid effort. Mike, are there any plans to dump Reed Sorenson in the #43? The guy has no racing game; put Chad McCumbee in that car.

Also, it's time Dover and other 400-mile tracks go back to 500 miles. We need to admit that 500 was and is a better test of racer and machinery than 400 miles. We might have gotten a different winner in a 500-miler here.

certainly aj did a good

certainly aj did a good job....red bull gave up too early on him. he's got talent and attitude, and spunk.
reed was pointedly left out in the merger talks between rpm and yates, and rp himself says he wants aj in the 43 next year. i dont know enough about chad; it's just a tough stretch for any drivers without a rep. i'm trying to get a piece out on jesus hernandez, who is really promising, but without sponsorship nothing is going to happen.....
500 vs 400? wow! i'm looking at going the other way: Dover 200 miles under the lights, and cautions don't count. that 400 sunday ran three hours, and it was a rather boring three hours at that, and nascar -- again -- gave the 1 pm NFL game a 90 minute headstart. NASCAR is shooting itself in the foot with these starting times

I like NASCAR more than I

I like NASCAR more than I like football. After watching football before the 86 strike, football bites. I hate the owners, the players, the announcers, even the cheerleaders.


ABC/ESPN is treating the NASCAR races as time-filler material and that makes me so freakin angry, I could just ______.

Part of the duties of the announcers of a race is to get folks excited and attached to what they are viewing.

I've heard a lot of good things about Dr. Punch over the years. And as a long-time NASCAR journalist, you probably have a number of stories about Dr. Punch yourself Mr. Mulhearn.

But I also like Scott Riggs.

Riggs was a great workhorse driver but it just never worked out for him. Dr. Punch is a great workhorse reporter but putting him the driver's seat for such an important assignment such as the Chase is a terrible mistake. Same thing with Andy Petree. Petree is not a full-time announcer or color guy. Doesn't have the charima for calling Cup races. Truck races not Cup.

The pit lane reporters are not that great either. I feel like I'm watching cheerleaders rather than journalists who know about NASCAR.

And this is so disrespectful to a sport which I really love and to fans that I care about (even if I don't always agree with).

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