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Lap-by-Lap: Michigan

August 24, 2012, ,

Results | Standings

Lap 201 -- CHECKERED FLAG: Brad Keselowski can't find enough steam to get around Greg Biffle for the victory, and he very nearly loses second to a hard-charging Kasey Kahne at the stripe. It's the second win of 2012 for Biffle, and the 12th for Roush Fenway Racing at Michigan.

Lap 200 -- GREEN FLAG: Greg Biffle, Brad Keselowski, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Carl Edwards and Kasey Kahne are the top five on the restart. Kahne goes three wide into third place, and that allows Biffle and Keselowski to break away.

Lap 199 -- The race will end with at least one attempt at a green-white-checkered finish.

Lap 198 -- Jimmie Johnson's car may have stopped at the transporter, but Johnson did not. He headed straight for the motorcoach lot without speaking to reporters.

Lap 197 -- Matt Kenseth, Jeff Burton, Kevin Harvick and a few others are pitting.

Lap 196 -- Jimmie Johnson has pulled his car not just to the garage, but straight to its transporter.

Lap 195 -- YELLOW FLAG: There's smoke and water trailing out of the exhaust pipes on Jimmie Johnson's car. Another Hendrick Motorsports engine bites the dust. This is the eighth caution of the race.

Lap 194 -- Jimmie Johnson is off the pace! The lead goes to Greg Biffle.

Lap 193 -- Jimmie Johnson leads Greg Biffle by one second. Is there enough time for Biffle to catch him?

Lap 191 -- Greg Biffle powers past Brad Keselowski for second place going into Turn 3.

Lap 190 -- Jimmie Johnson bull rushes his way past Brad Keselowski for the lead in Turn 2. There are 10 laps to go.

Lap 189 -- Jimmie Johnson is on Brad Keselowski's bumper for the lead.

Lap 188 -- Brad Keselowski, Jimmie Johnson and Greg Biffle have broken away from fourth-place Carl Edwards.

Lap 187 -- GREEN FLAG: The top five are Brad Keselowski, Jimmie Johnson, Kasey Kahne, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Greg Biffle. Biffle makes a hard charge into third place, while Kahne drops back through the pack after a slow restart.

Lap 182 -- Paul Menard, Sam Hornish Jr. and Landon Cassill are pitting.

Lap 180 -- YELLOW FLAG: Trevor Bayne has a tire problem that sends him into the outside retaining wall. This is the seventh caution of the race.

Lap 179 -- Paul Menard, Landon Cassill, Travis Kvapil and David Gilliland have not yet pitted.

Lap 175 -- Denny Hamlin and Trevor Bayne are making their stops.

Lap 174 -- Sam Hornish Jr. is on pit road. The lead goes to Denny Hamlin.

Lap 172 -- Leader Sam Hornish Jr. has Martin Truex Jr. on his rear bumper, but Truex is trying to get back on the lead lap after pitting.

Lap 171 -- Wow. Telemetry shows that leader Sam Hornish Jr. hit 211 mph getting into Turn 1.

Lap 170 -- Carl Edwards and Martin Truex Jr. make their stops.

Lap 169 -- Brad Keselowski brings his car to pit road.

Lap 168 -- Leader Brad Keselowski will pit the next time around. Kevin Harvick pits.

Lap 166 -- Jimmie Johnson, Jamie McMurray and Kyle Busch are on pit road.

Lap 165 -- Marcos Ambrose, Greg Biffle, Ryan Newman and Aric Almirola are pitting. Tony Stewart has also been ordered to pick up his speed.

Lap 164 -- Kasey Kahne and Clint Bowyer are pitting.

Lap 163 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. slows to bring his car to pit road for what should be the last time in this race.

Lap 161 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. looks to be towing Brad Keselowski and Kasey Kahne around the track. They're in second through fourth place, respectively.

Lap 160 -- Forty laps to go.

Lap 159 -- Jimmie Johnson has opened up a lead of 1.4 seconds over second-place Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Lap 157 -- The top five are Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Brad Keselowski, Kasey Kahne and Clint Bowyer.

Lap 154 -- The top-three drivers are separated by about 8/10ths of a second.

Lap 152 -- Jimmie Johnson gets a run on Dale Earnhardt Jr. for the lead off Turn 4.

Lap 150 -- Fifty laps to go. Jimmie Johnson is right on Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s bumper for the lead. Tony Stewart has once again brought his car out of the garage.

Lap 149 -- Matt Kenseth is on pit road with a flat tire. Also, Juan Montoya and his crew chief have been ordered to the NASCAR hauler after the race.

Lap 148 -- GREEN FLAG: Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson, Brad Keselowski, Kasey Kahne and Greg Biffle are the leaders. Earnhardt wiggles ever so slightly in Turns 1 and 2, but he's able to hang on to the lead. Matt Kenseth is off the pace.

Lap 146 -- Cleanup continues on the race track.

Lap 144 -- Paul Menard is on pit road.

Lap 143 -- YELLOW FLAG: Juan Montoya's tire shreds his fender, leaving debris all over the track.

Lap 142 -- Juan Montoya is off the pace.

Lap 141 -- GREEN FLAG: Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson and Kasey Kahne are the leaders. Earnhardt clears for the lead just after the restart.

Lap 138 -- The first 10 cars did not pit. They are Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson, Brad Keselowski, Kasey Kahne, Marcos Ambrose, Clint Bowyer, Kyle Busch, Jeff Burton, Aric Almirola and Ryan Newman.

Lap 137 -- Some of the leaders are on pit road. Now, everybody should be able to make it the rest of the way on one more stop.

Lap 136 -- YELLOW FLAG: Kurt Busch has popped the wall in Turn 3 for the second time in as many laps.

Lap 133 -- Jimmie Johnson is also on the one-more-stop strategy. He's currently in eighth place.

Lap 131 -- Crew chief Steve Letarte tells eighth-place Dale Earnhardt Jr. that he is the first car in the running order that can make it the rest of the way on just one more pit stop.

Lap 130 -- Greg Biffle, Martin Truex Jr., Matt Kenseth, Jamie McMurray and Sam Hornish Jr. are the top five after the cycle of stops.

Lap 129 -- Brad Keselowski is making his stop.

Lap 127 -- Jimmie Johnson, Kyle Busch, Marcos Ambrose, Kasey Kahne, Jeff Burton and a couple of others are pitting.

Lap 126 -- Jimmie Johnson took over the lead when Dale Earnhardt Jr. pitted.

Lap 125 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. drops out of the lead to bring his Chevrolet to pit road.

Lap 121 -- Denny Hamlin is on pit road.

Lap 120 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson, Denny Hamlin, Marcos Ambrose and Kasey Kahne have not pitted during the current cycle. They make up the top five right now.

Lap 119 -- Tony Stewart has gone back to the garage.

Lap 117 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. has not made his stop yet.

Lap 115 -- Paul Menard gives up the lead to make his stop. The lead goes to Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Lap 114 -- Sam Hornish Jr. brings his car to a stop on pit road.

Lap 113 -- Matt Kenseth is in his pit stall.

Lap 112 -- Greg Biffle, Carl Edwards and Trevor Bayne are on pit road.

Lap 110 -- Maybe Sam Hornish Jr. should skip practice and qualifying every week! He's in second place right now.

Lap 109 -- Greg Biffle leads Sam Hornish Jr. by about 1.8 seconds.

Lap 108 -- Paul Menard is having a solid day in fifth place.

Lap 107 -- Martin Truex Jr. is on pit road. He should be able to make it the rest of the way on two more stops.

Lap 105 -- The top five is Greg Biffle, Martin Truex Jr., Sam Hornish Jr., Matt Kenseth and Carl Edwards.

Lap 104 -- Kevin Harvick has pitted.

Lap 102 -- Greg Biffle wrestles the top spot away from Martin Truex Jr.

Lap 101 -- Jeff Gordon is out of his car in the garage.

Lap 100 -- Crossed flags. The race has reached the halfway point. The gap between first and second remains steady at a few car lengths.

Lap 99 -- Sam Hornish Jr. is in third place, despite not practicing any here this weekend.

Lap 98 -- Jamie McMurray is on pit road for fresh right-side rubber.

Lap 97 -- Greg Biffle has been able to hang on to the draft of leader Martin Truex Jr.

Lap 95 -- Hendrick Motorsports has another engine issue. Jimmie Johnson changed engines Saturday, then Tony Stewart and Jeff Gordon develop trouble Sunday.

Lap 94 -- Jeff Gordon is off the pace with what appears to be an engine problem.

Lap 93 -- GREEN FLAG: Martin Truex Jr., Matt Kenseth, Greg Biffle, Carl Edwards and Sam Hornish Jr. are the leaders. Kenseth bobbles between Turns 1 and 2, and gets swallowed up. Truex grabs the lead.

Lap 90 -- Clint Bowyer, Jimmie Johnson, Brad Keselowski, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Kyle Busch, Kurt Busch, Kasey Kahne, Jeff Gordon, Jeff Burton and others pit under the caution.

Lap 89 -- YELLOW FLAG: Joey Logano has another run-in with the wall in Turn 3. This is the fourth caution of the race.

Lap 88 -- Joey Logano has popped the wall between Turns 3 and 4. That happened after he was tagged by Juan Montoya.

Lap 85 -- Great day for Michael Waltrip Racing. Teammates Clint Bowyer and Martin Truex Jr. are running 1-2, and a third car belonged to early race-dominator Mark Martin.

Lap 84 -- Jimmie Johnson has slipped back big time since the restart. He's now running 10th.

Lap 82 -- Interesting audio from Dale Earnhardt Jr. He asks what teammate Jeff Gordon's problem is with him. Junior's crew tells him that Gordon said he should've wrecked him.

Lap 81 -- GREEN FLAG: Clint Bowyer, Matt Kenseth, Martin Truex Jr., Jimmie Johnson and Kevin Harvick are the leaders.

Lap 79 -- Tony Stewart has been in the garage for several laps now. Also, Denny Hamlin has pitted.

Lap 78 -- None of the leaders have pitted under the caution.

Lap 76 -- YELLOW FLAG: Regan Smith loops his car in Turn 4 to bring out the race's third caution.

Lap 75 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr., Paul Menard and Marcos Ambrose go three wide on the frontstretch.

Lap 74 -- GREEN FLAG: Clint Bowyer, Matt Kenseth, Martin Truex Jr., Jimmie Johnson and Brad Keselowski are the leaders when the green flag comes back out. Bowyer is clear with the lead between Turns 1 and 2.

Lap 73 -- Kurt Busch is on pit road.

Lap 72 -- Kasey Kahne is pitting again. Kurt Busch did not pit, which moves him to the top of the running order.

Lap 71 -- The leaders are on pit road. Everybody takes two tires.

Lap 70 -- Mark Martin thanks fans for giving him the chance to drive such a "hot rod."

Lap 69 -- Matt Kenseth is the leader after the front two were taken out in the accident.

Lap 66 -- The accident was trigged when Bobby Labonte and Juan Montoya got together right in front of then-leader Mark Martin. After sliding off Turn 4, the end of pit wall sliced into Martin's car just behind the driver's compartment.

Lap 64 -- YELLOW FLAG: Mark Martin and Kasey Kahne have wrecked off Turn 4. Wow. Martin's car hit an opening in pit wall, which caused a small fire.

Lap 63 -- Kasey Kahne has caught Mark Martin for the lead. Martin appears to be stuck behind traffic.

Lap 62 -- The top-five drivers are separated by about 2.6 seconds.

Lap 60 -- Kasey Kahne has moved around Martin Truex Jr. for second place.

Lap 59 -- Look for Tony Stewart to be headed to the garage once everyone gets in place.

Lap 57 -- Tony Stewart has gone a lap down.

Lap 56 -- Kasey Kahne is also catching Matt Kenseth for third place.

Lap 53 -- Martin Truex Jr. has closed to within less than 7/10ths of a second of leader Mark Martin.

Lap 52 -- Tony Stewart believes that his car has dropped a cylinder.

Lap 51 -- Tony Stewart is off the pace.

Lap 49 -- Mark Martin's lead over second-place Martin Truex Jr. is 1.6 seconds.

Lap 48 -- Matt Kenseth isn't pleased with the handling of his car following his pit stop. He says his car is "evil loose."

Lap 47 -- After the cycle of stops, the top five consists of Mark Martin, Martin Truex Jr., Matt Kenseth, Kasey Kahne and Carl Edwards.

Lap 46 -- Sam Hornish Jr. is on pit road. That will cycle Mark Martin back to the top of the leaderboard.

Lap 45 -- Sam Hornish Jr. is the leader, and he stays on the track for another lap.

Lap 44 -- Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. hit the pits.

Lap 43 -- Juan Montoya is pitting.

Lap 42 -- The top five is currently Jimmie Johnson, Sam Hornish Jr., Dale Earnhardt Jr. Juan Montoya and Travis Kvapil. None of them has pitted.

Lap 40 -- The Kes hits pit road, which will hand the lead over to Jimmie Johnson.

Lap 39 -- Brad Keselowski should be pitting the next time by.

Lap 38 -- Brad Keselowski is now the leader. He's not pitted yet.

Lap 37 -- Mark Martin gives up the lead to pit. Denny Hamlin, Clint Bowyer, Tony Stewart and Matt Kenseth are also in.

Lap 36 -- Greg Biffle, Kasey Kahne and Marcos Ambrose are on pit road.

Lap 35 -- Joey Logano and Carl Edwards are pitting.

Lap 34 -- Trevor Bayne has dropped out of the top 10.

Lap 32 -- Mark Martin's fastest lap so far today was in the 196 mph range. Although that's a little slower than the first race here this year, it's still plenty fast!

Lap 31 -- It looks like Martin Truex Jr. might be reeling in Matt Kenseth for second place.

Lap 30 -- Jeff Gordon is in 10th place, 11.8 seconds off leader Mark Martin's pace.

Lap 28 -- Matt Kenseth has picked up several tenths of a second on leader Mark Martin.

Lap 25 -- Kurt Busch has scraped the wall, but he's continued on without coming onto pit road.

Lap 24 -- Just for the record, Harry Gant is the oldest winner in NASCAR history. For now.

Lap 22 -- Kasey Kahne moves around Paul Menard for fourth place.

Lap 21 -- Mark Martin is on cruise control early in Sunday's race. He's now about two seconds in front of Matt Kenseth.

Lap 19 -- How comforting is it for a NASCAR fan to tune into MRN and hear the voice of Barney Hall? When he's calling the action, all is well with the world.

Lap 18 -- 2011 Daytona 500 winner Trevor Bayne is having a decent day in eighth place. He's about eight seconds behind leader Mark Martin.

Lap 17 -- Paul Menard has picked up another spot. He's now shown in fourth place.

Lap 15 -- Leader Mark Martin has moved out to an advantage of 8/10ths of a second over second-place Matt Kenseth.

Lap 13 -- Still trying to come to grips with the fact that Mark Martin's first Cup race here at Michigan was 30 years ago. In what other professional sport is that kind of career possible?

Lap 12 -- After starting from the rear of the field, Jimmie Johnson has picked his way up to 24th place.

Lap 11 -- Mark Martin and Matt Kenseth have broken away from the rest of the field by a little bit.

Lap 10 -- GREEN FLAG: Mark Martin, Matt Kenseth, Kasey Kahne, Martin Truex Jr. and Carl Edwards bring the field to the green flag. Martin is free with the lead on the backstretch.

Lap 7 -- How in the world was Sam Hornish Jr. not collected in that accident? Wow ... that was a close call.

Lap 6 -- YELLOW FLAG: The race's first caution is out for David Gilliland's spin off Turn 4.

Lap 5 -- Matt Kenseth has moved up to second, with Kasey Kahne third.

Lap 4 -- Marcos Ambrose wobbled big time in Turn 4, which caused him to drop several positions in the running order.

Lap 2 -- Carl Edwards was as high as second on the first lap, but lost a couple of spots after he slipped in Turn 4.

Lap 1 -- GREEN FLAG: The race gets under way at 1:22 p.m. Mark Martin is clear just past the starter's stand with the lead.

1:20 p.m. ET -- Jimmie Johnson will start from the rear of the field due to an engine change. Dale Earnhardt Jr. will join him after going to a backup car.

1:15 p.m. ET -- The field begins to roll off pit road for the start of three planned pace laps.

1:14 p.m. ET -- The drivers are ready to participate!

1:11 p.m. ET -- Kid Rock's order to fire engines was about an eight on the Kevin James Scale!

1:09 p.m. ET -- Kid Rock gives the command to fire engines. Here's a question. How old is he going to be before he's known as Adult Rock?

1:03 p.m. ET -- Three F-16s from the 112th Fighter Squadron, 180th Fighter Wing of the Ohio National Guard do the fly-over. Dude ... that is so cool!

1:02 p.m. ET -- Ride Records singer-songwriter Steve Azar sings the American national anthem.

1:01 p.m. ET -- The colors are presented by the Michigan State Police Color Guard. After that, the invocation is given by Father Geoff Rose of Lumen Christi High School in Jackson, Mich.

12:59 p.m. ET -- Lisa Bascom is singing the Canadian national anthem.

12:57 p.m. ET -- Pole-sitter Mark Martin made his first start here at Michigan thirty years ago on June 20, 1982, in a race won by Cale Yarborough. Martin started 15th and finished 33rd due to engine failure.

12:54 p.m. ET -- Five minutes until the start of the national anthem and invocation package. This is getting real!

12:50 p.m. ET -- There are A LOT of people on pit road here at Michigan!

12:41 p.m. ET -- Rusty Wallace is on a roll today. He just called Jeff Gordon out, saying that he has to become more involved in his race team.

12:37 p.m. ET -- ESPN's Rusty Wallace says that he's very disappointed that Kyle Busch skipped Saturday's final Sprint Cup practice here at Michigan to race the Nationwide event in Montreal. We'll have to wait and see how that impacts his effort today.

12:20 p.m. ET -- Ten minutes until the start of driver introductions.

12:14 p.m. ET -- ESPN just concluded an interview with Sam Hornish Jr. Because he concentrated on Saturday's Nationwide Series race in Montreal, he has not practiced his Penske Racing Sprint Cup entry at all this weekend. He'll have to start from the rear of the field.

Noon ET -- ESPN's coverage of Sunday's Sprint Cup Series event at Michigan has started.

7:20 a.m. ET -- Mark Martin is on the pole for Sunday's Pure Michigan 400. Starting alongside him on the front row will be Carl Edwards. Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth and Kasey Kahne will take the green flag in third through fifth, while Trevor Bayne, Martin Truex Jr., Marcos Ambrose, Landon Cassill and Paul Menard round out the top 10. Stephen Leicht and J.J. Yeley failed to qualify for the event.