Matt Kenseth won the Bojangles Southern 500 from Darlington Raceway. The event which has been run on the Saturday before Mother’s Day saw a lot of green flag racing early at the track which had earned the nickname “too tough to tame.”
Kurt Busch led the field to the green flag after setting a new track record in qualifying. Busch would lead the first 50 laps before surrendering the lead to his younger brother Kyle and then Matt Kenseth under the first round of pitstop, before regaining it. Kyle Busch would then assume the lead on lap 72.
The first caution flag would drop on lap 125 for debris. Jeff Gordon who was making his 700th start took over the lead on lap 185 before giving way to Kyle Busch on lap 202.
Regan Smith would bring out the second caution when he spun on lap 303 due to a flat rear tire. Casey Mears slammed the inside wall on lap 312 after being tapped by Paul Menard. Brad Keselowski would damage his car when he hit Mears coming down the track.
On lap 329 Josh Wise got lose and spun up the track into David Reutimann bringing out the fourth caution. After the ensuing restart Kasey Kahne hit the wall after trying to pull off the cross over in front of Kyle Busch. Replays were unclear to as if there was contact between the two, after they made contact last week at Talladega. Kahne’s ECU shut off after hitting the all bringing out the fifth caution.
With less then 20 laps to go Kenseth began to run down Busch before passing him with 13 to go. Busch faded though the pack as Denny Hamlin moved up to second.
There was no competition for Kenseth who cruised to his third win of the year ahead of Hamlin, Gordon, Johnson and Kevin Harvick. Busch finished sixth.
The win was the first for Kenseth at Darlington. Kenseth was racing with Wally Brown as his crew chief as his normal crew chief Jason Ratcliff is serving a one race suspension.
|May 11, 2013 | Darlington Raceway – Darlington, South Carolina | 501.3 mi (367 of 367 Laps)|
|8||Juan Pablo Montoya||42||Chevrolet||12|
|9||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||88||Chevrolet||16|
|12||Martin Truex Jr.||56||Toyota||5|
|18||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||17||Ford||14|