INDIANAPOLIS — Jimmie Johnson won Sunday’s Sprint Cup Brickyard 400 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to become the first three-time winner. Johnson hadn’t led until lap 137. On the race’s final restart, he passed his teammate and pole sitter Mark Martin for the lead, and led the remaining 33 laps of the 160-lap race.“That was unbelievable,” said Johnson. “I can’t say enough for Mark Martin. For an old guy, he had me pretty worried there.
“We had to drive it so hard those last 15 to 20 laps to stay ahead of Mark. There were some places he was better than me, and it was kind of a give and take thing, so neither of us would wreck.”
Martin finished second and moved up two positions in the Chase.
“He was better than I was off four and I was better than him off two,” said Martin. “I knew I had to make it happen off two. Both of us were driving for all we were worth, and I couldn’t get him.”
Tony Stewart was third.
“It was a good run for us,” said Stewart. “We had one minor hiccup in the pits when we lost four spots in the pits, but I made that up. We were just a little too tight and couldn’t run with Mark or Jimmie.”
Greg Biffle, Brian Vickers, Kevin Harvick, Kasey Kahne, David Reutimann, Jeff Gordon and Matt Kenseth were the remaining top-10 finishers.
Juan Montoya led the most laps (116) of any driver but after a pit road speeding penalty, he finished 11th.
“I really didn’t think it was so. You know, we have lights if we’re over the speed, and I was under the lights all the time. They said I was speeding. So, that’s what it is. When one thing like this happens, you can’t change it.”
Montoya dropped from 10th to 11th in the point standings.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. lost an engine in his No. 5 during lap127 and wound up with a DNF.
Kyle Busch hit the wall and was finished by lap 112. He dropped four spots, and is now out of the Chase in 14th position.
Top 12 Chase contenders after 20 of 26: 1. Stewart-3,054, 2. Johnson-2,862, 3. J. Gordon-2,847, 4. Kurt Busch-2,608, 5. Edwards-2,556, 6. Hamlin-2,518, 7. Newman-2,506, 8. Kahne-2,482, 9. Martin-2,471, 10. Montoya-2,461, 11. Biffle-2,445, 12. Kenseth-2,429.