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Duels Over, What Do We Take Away?

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Gatorade Duel 1
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Now that the duels are over, it’s time to see who has made the cut. The first race showed the Hendrick and Gibbs cars are pretty tough, as expected.

In Duel #1, Gordon goes away with the win and the nice surprise, Joey finished 4th and Stewart made a run at the end to win, but finished 2nd. Scott Riggs raced his way in finishing 8th and the wait began for “Front Row” Joe. Also by Stewart finishing 2nd, Regan Smith gets locked in based on his time. Even though Bill Elliot didn’t finish his Duel, he is still locked in for the Wood Brothers based on his time as well.†

Duel #2, Boris Said hits the wall and has to wait to see if his speed will get him in. Montoya does everything in his power to take Martin out, but Martin’s experience prevails. After lap 14, things really settled down and everyone kinda fell in line like good school children with Martin running up front. With 14 to go, tire problems strike and Martin pits to get new ones as well as Jr. and †Vickers. While all of this is going on,†Reuteman†gets in the back of Newman and sends hims spinning hard into the wall, taking him out of the race. †Lucky for Martin, pit schedules keep him out front, the true version of the “Lucky Dog”. Newman is cited as as saying “…wrong place at the wrong time…” and a few choice words for†Reuteman, calling him “Rudeman”.††With 5 to go, the Gibbs boys get hooked up and Hamlin and Busch (Kyle) move past Martin, but the number 5 doesn’t give up, staying right there in the mix. Last lap, Martin passes Hamlin for 2nd, but can’t get to Busch. AJ Allmendinger and Jeremy Mayfield race their way in, so that means Bill Elliot, Travis Kvapil and Regan Smith make it in on speed while Terry Labonte will take the past champions provisional.

Great racing today, both Duels were exciting, should make for a great Daytona 500 on Sunday.

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About Christopher Smith

A long time fan of NASCAR, he attended his first race as a kid in 1979 at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the World 600. Christopher watched Darrell Waltrip drive his way to victory and from that day forward heís been hooked. As president of RubbingsRacing.com, Christopher launched the site in 2000 and in the past decade, it has grown into a NASCAR-accredited web site hosting multiple podcasts, dedicated writers and race coverage at the majority of NASCAR-sanctioned events. Christopher is an official member of the National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA).

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