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Lap-by-Lap: Indianapolis

July 31, 2011, , NASCAR.com

Lap 160 -- Paul Menard used lapped traffic to hold off a hard-charging Jeff Gordon and win the Brickyard 400 for his first Sprint Cup Series victory. Regan Smith, Jamie McMurray and Matt Kenseth rounded out the top five.

Lap 159 -- WHITE FLAG: Jeff Gordon is up to second and closing on Paul Menard. Gordon is in perfect position for the victory.

Lap 158 -- Jeff Gordon is just 1.5 seconds off the lead. He's up to third behind Paul Menard and Mark Martin.

Lap 157 -- Paul Menard goes back to the lead after getting the word that he can turn it on full force for the final laps.

Lap 156 -- Jamie McMurray could be as close as a half-lap to the end of the race. He's still saving a little, but he's not as concerned.

Lap 155 -- Jeff Gordon is up to fifth and coming fast at the leaders.

Lap 154 -- Trevor Bayne heads to pit road to take his fuel. Jamie McMurray continues to lead in his search for back-to-back Brickyard wins.

Lap 153 -- Jamie McMurray takes the lead, and Jeff Gordon is up to eight and is 7.7 seconds back with a full tank.

Lap 152 -- Word has come down that Trevor Bayne will have to pit with seven laps remaining, so his shot at winning is gone.

Lap 151 -- It's single-file racing up front with Paul Menard, Jamie McMurray, Mark Martin, Trevor Bayne and Regan Smith.

Lap 150 -- Trevor Bayne is up to fourth. Can he pull off the Daytona 500/Brickyard 400 double?

Lap 148 -- Paul Menard is still out front, with others behind him also trying to save fuel. Jeff Gordon is 12 seconds back but full of fuel.

Lap 147 -- The race for the lead right now at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is between Paul Menard, Mark Martin and Jamie McMurray. Read that again.

Lap 146 -- Tony Stewart gives up the lead to take fuel and ensure he'll be running at the end. He also takes four tires.

Lap 145 -- Jeff Gordon is running 15th and is the front-running car among those who made the green-flag stop.

Lap 144 -- Darian Grubb tells Tony Stewart he needs to save more than the lap and a half Stewart expected. With a lead of more than 12 seconds, it's definitely achievable.

Lap 142 -- The top 10 as they run: Tony Stewart, Brian Vickers, Paul Menard, Mark Martin, Jamie McMurray, Greg Biffle, Regan Smith, Kyle Busch, Bobby Labonte, Trevor Bayne.

Lap 140 -- Tony Stewart is leading by more than four seconds at his hometown track. He should make it to the end if he conserves a little bit of fuel.

Lap 136 -- Tony Stewart takes the lead after David Ragan heads to pit road. He's followed off the track by A.J. Allmendinger. Ragan takes two tires and a track bar adjustment along with fuel. Same for Allmendinger.

Lap 135 -- Leader Jeff Gordon heads to the pits and takes two tires and fuel with no adjustments. That puts David Ragan in the lead.

Lap 134 -- Clint Bowyer, who had been in the lead, comes in for four tires and a track bar adjustment, plus fuel. That put Jeff Gordon back in the lead.

Lap 133 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. takes two tires and fuel, while Joey Logano takes two tires and fuel as well.

Lap 132 -- Leader Brad Keselowski hit pit road and took four tires plus fuel. Juan Montoya took two tires and an adjustment, and Kasey Kahne took fuel only.

Lap 131 -- Jimmie Johnson takes four tires and fuel plus a track-bar adjustment for what should be his final stop.

Lap 130 -- Jeff Burton bailed on third and hit pit road, but it cost Matt Kenseth fourth spot to Jeff Gordon.

Lap 129 -- Kasey Kahne is in 16th after going through the grass. He's got a limited number of laps to make up all that ground. Kevin Harvick is back on pit road to top off his fuel tank.

Lap 127 -- Clint Bowyer made a big move on the restart and takes over second behind Brad Keselowski.

Lap 126 -- GREEN FLAG: Brad Keselowski leads the race still.

Lap 123 -- Most of the leaders stayed out of the pits. Kevin Harvick was the first one to come in, running eighth.

Lap 121 -- Kurt Busch made an impressive move to miss the chaos in front of him, but he's one of the many who have debris on their front grille which is affecting their internal temperatures.

Lap 120 -- YELLOW FLAG NO. 5: Landon Cassill and David Ragan made contact while running four wide, sending Cassill into a sideways slide and sending Kasey Kahne into the grass.

Lap 119 -- Pass-through penalty for Marcos Ambrose for changing lanes before the start/finish line.

Lap 118 -- Juan Montoya is already up to third with his two fresh tires. Brad Keselowski and Jeff Burton are about to have their hands full.

Lap 117 -- GREEN FLAG: Brad Keselowski led them to green.

Lap 116 -- Brad Keselowski is the leader after staying out of the pits. The rest of the top five: Jeff Burton, Jamie McMurray, Landon Cassill and Juan Montoya.

Lap 115 -- The leaders hit pit road. Brad Keselowski, who was 14th, was the first car not to pit. Jeff Gordon took four tires and fuel. Paul Menard took four tires and fuel, no adjustment. Matt Kenseth took four tires, but Juan Montoya took only two and is first off pit road.

Lap 114 -- YELLOW FLAG NO. 4: The caution has waved again, and this time it's for Kyle Busch having gotten into the wall off Turn 2. Mike Bliss gets the free pass again, putting him back on the lead lap after being two laps down earlier.

Lap 113 -- This continues to be a two-car race, as Jeff Gordon tails leader Matt Kenseth.

Lap 112 -- Jimmie Johnson nearly lost control of his car several times on this lap, but kept it off the wall.

Lap 110 -- Matt Kenseth and Jeff Gordon have checked out, with about two seconds between Gordon and third-place Juan Montoya.

Lap 109 -- Jimmie Johnson is right behind Dale Earnhardt Jr. for a spot in the top 10.

Lap 108 -- Juan Montoya is up to third.

Lap 107 -- Matt Kenseth takes the top position, and Jeff Gordon is up to second. Paul Menard got loose when Kenseth passed, and he's shuffled back to fourth.

Lap 106 -- Slowly but surely, those four tires are helping Jimmie Johnson. He restarted back in 13th, but he's up to 11th now and just turned the fastest lap on the track.

Lap 104 -- After his extended pit stop last time through, Kyle Busch is scored in 21st.

Lap 103 -- Jeff Gordon is also closing on those top two cars as it's a three-man race for the lead.

Lap 102 -- Matt Kenseth is all over Paul Menard for the race lead, but Menard holds on to it as of now.

Lap 101 -- Kasey Kahne is climbing, having just passed Denny Hamlin and up to sixth.

Lap 100 -- Kurt Busch and Jimmie Johnson get outside and nearly get the wall, but both keep it off the wall.

Lap 97 -- GREEN FLAG: Following pit stops, the top 10 are: Paul Menard, Matt Kenseth, David Ragan, Kasey Kahne, Jeff Gordon, Denny Hamlin, Juan Montoya, A.J. Allmendinger, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Mark Martin.

Lap 96 -- Kyle Busch takes a long stop, while running eighth, in order to make repairs to the right front of his car after he made contact while exiting his pit stall.

Lap 95 -- The leaders hit pit road. Dale Earnhardt Jr. takes two tires and fuel. Jeff Gordon also takes only right-side tires and a half-round up on the track bar. Jimmie Johnson takes four tires and a track-bar adjustment. Kasey Kahne took two tires to try to tighten up his car.

Lap 94 -- YELLOW FLAG NO. 3: The caution is out again, for debris again. This will bunch the field back up and allow teams to make more adjustments as the temperature continues to rise. Mike Bliss gets the free pass.

Lap 93 -- Kurt Busch is right on the bumper of Kevin Harvick for that 15th spot.

Lap 92 -- Carl Edwards has dropped two more spots, this time to 21st.

Lap 91 -- Juan Montoya used David Ragan's car to clear his grille. Montoya is running seventh, between Ragan and Kyle Busch.

Lap 87 -- There are only three cars within 10 seconds of leader Jeff Gordon. Fifth-place Matt Kenseth is 10.6 seconds back.

Lap 85 -- Juan Montoya just picked up a big piece of plastic on his grille, which is affecting his temperatures.

Lap 84 -- Paul Menard hit the pits, handing the lead back to Jeff Gordon. Menard is reportedly getting good fuel mileage, which could help him at the end.

Lap 83 -- Jimmie Johnson hits pit road for four tires, fuel and a slight adjustment. Paul Menard is now in the lead.

Lap 82 -- Four tires for Jeff Gordon and some fuel. He also took a chassis adjustment. Matt Kenseth is also in, leaving Jimmie Johnson in the race lead. Kenseth took four tires, fuel and air pressure.

Lap 81 -- The green-flag pit stops are continuing to cycle through, as Kasey Kahne has just come back out on the track. The top three cars have yet to make their stops.

Lap 80 -- Jeff Gordon is continuing to dominate, as his lead is nearly 3.5 seconds ahead of Jimmie Johnson.

Lap 77 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. gets four tires and an air-pressure adjustment after complaining of not having enough straightaway speed.

Lap 76 -- Problems keep coming for Tony Stewart. A pass-through penalty and then a slow pit stop on his second stop has him sitting 25th.

Lap 75 -- Jeff Burton has just passed Kurt Busch for 15th.

Lap 73 -- Carl Edwards has dropped back to 19th. Brad Keselowski has also hit pit road to take four tires and fuel.

Lap 72 -- Jamie McMurray made an early pit stop after his car was made too tight and he lost 10 spots on the race track.

Lap 71 -- Brian Vickers has climbed to 11th, just ahead of a gaggle of Richard Childress Racing cars.

Lap 68 -- Jimmie Johnson goes around his teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr. for second place. Jeff Gordon's lead is at 2.7 seconds.

Lap 66 -- Pole-sitter David Ragan is running sixth in the No. 6 car. Ragan is paying homage to Hall of Famer Ned Jarrett this weekend.

Lap 64 -- Kasey Kahne has climbed up to fifth in the race after his pit-road troubles earlier.

Lap 63 -- Jeff Gordon's lead has climbed to more than one second as Hendrick Motorsports has the top three spots locked down.

Lap 60 -- Jeff Gordon passes his teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr. with no trouble as Junior pulls over and lets him go.

Lap 59 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. has the lead, but it's likely not for long. Jeff Gordon is picking up every lap.

Lap 58 -- Jeff Gordon is back up to second and is chasing his teammate, Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Lap 57 -- Jimmie Johnson and Matt Kenseth have both gone past Kyle Busch and are running fourth and fifth.

Lap 56 -- Clean air is obviously helpful. Dale Earnhardt Jr. finds himself at the front of the field and he's pulling away from David Ragan.

Lap 55 -- For a track not known for easy passing, there has been plenty of action at IMS today. Drivers are not afraid to go two- or three-wide.

Lap 54 -- GREEN FLAG: Pit strategy rears its head. The top five are: Dale Earnhardt Jr., David Ragan, Kyle Busch, Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson.

Lap 53 -- A problem on the left front has cost Kasey Kahne some position. A dropped lug nut has put him back in 10th place after leading most of the laps today.

Lap 52 -- Leaders hit pit road. Four tires and down on the track bar for Jeff Gordon. Jimmie Johnson takes four tires and gets directions to stay hydrated. Kasey Kahne takes four tires and no adjustments. Juan Montoya says he was tight.

Lap 51 -- Denny Hamlin is the big winner of the track position gamble last time out. He's in sixth as crews prepare for the pit road invasion.

Lap 50 -- YELLOW FLAG NO. 2: The caution is back out, this time for David Reutimann getting into the wall.

Lap 45 -- Never mind. Dale Earnhardt Jr. makes an unscheduled stop to have his grille cleaned off. He picked up some more fuel.

Lap 44 -- Don't look now, but Dale Earnhardt Jr. is up to 11th. He's one spot ahead of Carl Edwards, who his complaining about his engine "surging."

Lap 43 -- Denny Hamlin is up to fifth after staying out on the last pit stop. Matt Kenseth, who was the first to pit, is up to seventh after restarting 11th.

Lap 42 -- Jeff Gordon is now 1.3 seconds behind leader Kasey Kahne.

Lap 41 -- Three-wide on the backstretch, but it went to single-file by the time they got to Turn 3.

Lap 40 -- Mark Martin has recovered from getting loose and is staying strong in fourth position.

Lap 39 -- Kasey Kahne leads again after the restart.

Lap 38 -- GREEN FLAG: Kasey Kahne and Jeff Gordon led the field back to green.

Lap 37 -- After pit stops, the top 10 looks like this: Kasey Kahne, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Mark Martin, Juan Montoya, Jamie McMurray, Denny Hamlin, Martin Truex Jr., Landon Cassill and Jeff Burton.

Lap 36 -- That will shuffle up the running order quite a lot. Replay shows the caution came out when Kyle Busch tried to throw his bottle but missed the grass and it ended up on the racing surface.

Lap 35 -- A regular parade of cars hit pit road, but neither Kasey Kahne nor Jeff Gordon are in that group. Matt Kenseth in third was the first to hit pit road and he took two tires.

Lap 34 -- YELLOW FLAG NO. 1: Debris on the race track brings out the first caution. Tony Stewart fell from 15th to 31st after his pass-through penalty. Some drivers are expected to hit pit road for fresh tires despite just having pitted.

Lap 33 -- Kyle Busch is running 15th.

Lap 32 -- Jeff Burton is scored in 33rd position after the pit stops. He had a run-in with Juan Montoya on pit road.

Lap 31 -- After pit stops cycled through, the top 10 are: Kasey Kahne, Jeff Gordon, Matt Kenseth, A.J. Allmendinger, Jimmie Johnson, David Ragan, Mark Martin, Kurt Busch and Juan Montoya.

Lap 30 -- Kasey Kahne is back up front, and leads by more than eight seconds on Jeff Gordon.

Lap 29 -- Landon Cassill takes the lead when Matt Kenseth pits. Tony Stewart serves his pass-through penalty for hitting the orange commitment cone on pit road.

Lap 28 -- Matt Kenseth takes the lead when Jeff Gordon hits the pits. Gordon gets four tires, fuel and a half-round of wedge. Jimmie Johnson also takes four, fuel and a track bar adjustment.

Lap 27 -- Kurt Busch get four tires and some fuel, and they pulled on his right front bumper to try to clear it from the tire.

Lap 26 -- Jeff Gordon takes over the lead. Pit road is busy as everyone takes four tires and fuel, along with some adjustments.

Lap 25 -- A.J. Allmendinger begins the parade to pit road. He's taking four tires, fuel and a small chassis adjustment. Kasey Kahne also hit pit road for four tires and fuel.

Lap 23 -- All four of the Richard Childress Racing cars are in the top 17: Jeff Burton ninth, Paul Menard 14th, Kevin Harvick 15th and Clint Bowyer 17th.

Lap 22 -- Matt Kenseth has passed A.J. Allmendinger for the fourth spot.

Lap 21 -- Kasey Kahne's lead is at 4.1 seconds ahead of Jeff Gordon.

Lap 20 -- Juan Montoya has climbed into the top 10.

Lap 19 -- Jeff Burton has gained another position and is running ninth. He's one spot behind former teammate Mark Martin.

Lap 18 -- Kurt Busch's damage on the right side of his car is continuing to hamper him, but he's holding solid in seventh.

Lap 17 -- Kasey Kahne continues to stretch his lead, now to nearly 4.5 seconds over Jeff Gordon.

Lap 16 -- Tony Stewart has picked up seven spots and is up to 17th at his home track.

Lap 15 -- Brad Keselowski started fifth, but is continuing his freefall. He's down to 12th.

Lap 14 -- Jeff Gordon is up to second, but still 3.5 seconds behind leader Kasey Kahne.

Lap 13 -- Juan Montoya is 12th right now after dominating the past two years but falling short of Victory Lane.

Lap 12 -- Jeff Gordon is still climbing, up to third. Three of the Hendrick Motorsports cars in the top eight, but Dale Earnhardt Jr. is running 20th.

Lap 11 -- Kasey Kahne's lead has grown to more than three seconds over pole-sitter David Ragan.

Lap 10 -- Jeff Burton has picked up three spots and is in 10th. He has yet to record a top-10 finish this season.

Lap 9 -- After contact with the wall, Kurt Busch is complaining about his car being tight. He's fallen to seventh.

Lap 8 -- Jeff Gordon is up to fourth position after starting eighth.

Lap 7 -- Joey Logano has fallen to 28th after contact with Dale Earnhardt Jr. nearly spun him coming out of Turn 4.

Lap 6 -- Trevor Bayne made an unscheduled stop after his temperature skyrocketed because of debris on his front grille.

Lap 5 -- Action is picking up, as they've gone four wide on the backstretch and Joey Logano nearly gets spun out.

Lap 4 -- Kasey Kahne has checked out on the field at Indy.

Lap 3 -- A.J. Allmendinger takes over third, and Jimmie Johnson, Kurt Busch, Jeff Gordon and Matt Kenseth are in a pack racing for fourth.

Lap 2 -- David Ragan is now under pressure by Kurt Busch and A.J. Allmendinger for the second position.

Lap 1 -- Kasey Kahne took the lead on the outside and takes the first position on the first lap.

1:21 p.m. ET -- GREEN FLAG: David Ragan led the field to green in the historic Brickyard 400.

1:09 p.m. ET -- Mari Hulman-George, the chairperson of the board at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, gives the command: "Gentlemen, start your engines!"

1:05 p.m. ET -- The fly-by is done by four T-45 Goshawk from the United States Navy.

1:03 p.m. ET -- The national anthem is performed by Rascal Flatts.

1:02 p.m. ET -- A mixed color guard of local participants presents the flags and the invocation is given by Rev. Howard Brammer.

9:14 a.m. ET -- It's 80 degrees at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, with temperatures expected to climb into the low 90s by the time of the Brickyard 400. David Ragan and Kasey Kahne will pace the field for the race, which is slated for a green flag time of 1:21 p.m. ET.