News & Media


By the Numbers: Victory Lane a select club recently at Richmond

September 06, 2012, , NASCAR.com

For Starters

3 -- Three drivers have combined to win the past seven September races at Richmond International Raceway: Kevin Harvick (3), Kyle Busch (2) and Carl Edwards (2). Only Harvick is entered in this week's race. Cup competitors have won the past 16 NNS races at Richmond, since Busch in May 2004.

4 -- Four drivers have combined to win 11 of the past 12 races at Richmond: Kyle Busch (4), Jimmie Johnson (3), Denny Hamlin (2) and Kevin Harvick (2). Each of Hamlin and Harvick's wins came in September races; two of Johnson's also came in the fall. Clint Bowyer (May 2008) is the only other driver to win at Richmond during that span.

NATIONWIDE SERIES

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Breakout Number

8 -- Kevin Harvick led 157 of 195 laps last week at Atlanta in setting a series record for most races leading the most laps (8) without winning during a winless streak (30). Harvick hasn't won since Richmond in September 2010, when he tied Mark Martin for most victories at the track (5). Harvick has led the most laps at Richmond four times, including earlier this year -- one of five times he has led the most laps in 2012 -- when he failed to win for the first time after leading the most laps there.

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Track Tidbits

2 -- Two of the past three races at Richmond have had only three cautions -- including the Virginia 529 College Savings 250 in April -- which tied the record for the fewest ever at Richmond (accomplished four times overall).

3 -- Three of the past four series races at Richmond have had at least one green-flag stretch of 100 laps, the only known green stretches of more than 100 laps ever at the track. The final green-flag stretch at Richmond in April was 126, the longest green stretch to end a race this season and the longest in known history at RIR (detailed caution information is not available for every race).

6 -- Six races at Richmond have ended with a green-white-checkered finish, the second-most G-W-C finishes at a track behind Daytona and Phoenix with seven.

Recent Trends

5 -- Points leader Elliott Sadler and second-place Ricky Stenhouse Jr. are the only drivers to finish in the top 10 in all five races on short tracks this season; they also lead all drivers with four top-fives each on short tracks. Sadler has won two of the five races and has an average finish of 3.0 while Stenhouse won once and has an average finish of 3.6. Stenhouse has won three of the past 10 NNS races on short tracks. Stenhouse finished fourth at Richmond in April; Sadler was sixth.

7 -- The driver leading the most laps has failed to win the past seven races, tied for the third-longest streak (with 2003) behind nine in 1989 and eight in 2004. The driver leading the most laps has failed to win the past two races at Richmond.

8 -- Eight of the past nine series short-track races have been won from the first two rows, including the past three. Six of the past 10 races at Richmond have been won from the first two rows, most recently by Kyle Busch last September. Kurt Busch won this year's April race after starting 10th.

SPRINT CUP SERIES

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Breakout Number

4 -- A driver has jumped into Chase position in four of the eight races at Richmond, but it's only happened once in the past five years: In 2009, Brian Vickers made his first Chase at the expense of Matt Kenseth; it's the only time Kenseth has failed to make the Chase. The first three years of the Chase all produced comings and goings: In 2004, Jeremy Mayfield got in with the win and knocked Kasey Kahne out; in 2005, Ryan Newman surged ahead of Jamie McMurray; and in 2006, Kahne raced his way in as Tony Stewart -- the previous year's champ -- dropped out.

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Track Tidbits

3 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. has three wins at Richmond, his most at a non-restrictor-plate track. However, his runner-up finish in the Capital City 400 in April was his first top-15 in the past seven races there.

4 -- Kyle Busch has won four of the past seven races at Richmond; all have come in the spring (including May). His best finish in the September races is second, accomplished twice (most recently in 2010). Busch has finished in the top five in 12 of his 15 starts at Richmond, including eight top-two results. He has failed to finish in the top 10 just twice, both in September (most recently a 15th-place finish in 2008).

5 -- The five cautions in the spring race at Richmond marked the fourth time in the past five races there have been single-digit cautions. The lone exception was last September, when 15 cautions tied the record for the most on the current three-quarters-mile configuration and set the mark for the most cautions in the fall race.

Recent Trends

1 -- Clint Bowyer is the only driver with top-10 finishes in all four short-track races this season, including seventh earlier this year at Richmond. His 10.2 average finish at RIR (seven top-10s in 13 races) is third-best among active drivers with more than five starts. Bowyer had a four-race top-10 streak snapped last week at Atlanta.

4 -- Jeff Gordon has been passed for the final lead change in four of the past seven races at Richmond, including on Lap 385 of 400 last September. Gordon hasn't won at Richmond since September 2000. His 15 short-track wins are the most among active drivers, but he has not won in 40 such races, since April 2005 at Martinsville. Gordon has led the most laps in short-track races this season (330), but has only one top-10 finish (third at Bristol in August); he finished 23rd earlier this year at Richmond.

200 -- A driver has led more than 200 laps in the past six races at Richmond. That driver went on to win the race each time until this past May, when Carl Edwards finished 10th despite leading 206 laps. Edwards has never won in 16 starts at RIR.

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