After winning the rain-shortened Daytona 500 over the weekend Matt Kenseth will be looking to make it two in a row on Sunday when he takes the track in the Auto Club 500.
Kenseth took the checkered flag in the 152-lap season opener, holding off Kevin Harvick and A.J. Allmendinger for the victory. Clint Bowyer and Elliott Sadler rounded out the top five at Daytona, while David Ragan, Michael Waltrip, Tony Stewart, Reed Sorenson, and Kurt Busch made up the rest of the top 10.
Pole sitter Martin Truex Jr. ended up in 11th place at Daytona, Jeff Gordon was 13th, Carl Edwards was 18th, Dale Earnhardt Jr. was 27th, and Jimmie Johnson was 31st. Kyle Busch was involved in an accident and had to settle for 41st place, and rookie Joey Logano was dead last in 43rd position.
That gives Kenseth a 20-point lead on Harvick in the early Sprint Cup Series driver standings, with Allmendinger 25 points back of top spot in third place heading to Auto Club Speedway in Fontana.
Kenseth has two Auto Club 500 wins on his resume; he visited victory lane in this event in both 2006 and 2007. Edwards won this race last season, while Johnson took the trophy at the autumn Auto Club events in both 2007 and 2008. Gordon has won at the Fontana track three times in his career, most recently in 2004.
After racing in the Auto Club 500 the drivers of the Sprint Cup Series will travel to Nevada for the Shelby 427 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on March 1. Other March events on the Cup calendar include the Kobalt Tools 500, the Food City 500, and the Goody’s Fast Relief 500.