News & Media

UPS Game Changing Moment: All about the fuel mileage

October 01, 2012, Seth Livingstone, Special to NASCAR.COM,

Kyle Busch led 302 laps but didn't have enough gas to finish the race in front

DOVER, Del. -- Kyle Busch fought off all rivals, leading 302 of the first 389 laps at Dover International Speedway on Sunday.

But he couldn't fight the needle on his gas gauge.

UPS... Game Changing Moments

Forced to pit for fuel, Busch surrendered the lead to pole-sitter Denny Hamlin. But Hamlin, 10 laps shy of the finish, could only lead one lap before needing to pit as well.

The opened the door for Brad Keselowski to win for the second time in the first three races of NASCAR's Chase for the Cup.

"Kyle did a phenomenal job, but our numbers just said we couldn't make it," Busch's crew chief Dave Rogers said. "All race we're scanning everybody and every time the 2 [Keselowski] or the 48 [Jimmie Johnson] would say they had to pit it was five to six laps later than us.

"I knew they had better fuel mileage and I knew if it came down to a fuel mileage race that we were going to be in trouble. We played our best cards and we came up short. There was no doubt that we had the fastest car today."

Keselowski wasn't exactly flush with fuel.

"We were within a lap or two [of running out]," said his crew chief Paul Wolfe. "It's hard to say, exactly. We had enough to do some burnouts and what-not. I'd say [Brad] did a great job of saving, for sure."