Roger Diez: Tired of rain looming, crew chief makes right call | NevadaAppeal.com

Roger Diez: Tired of rain looming, crew chief makes right call

Roger Diez

Two drivers went into last weekend's races with a chance to win four consecutive races at a track. Unfortunately, neither of them accomplished that difficult feat. Kyle Larson didn't win the Monster Energy NASCAR series Michigan race, and Lewis Hamilton had a similar result in Montreal. Start over, boys.

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At Michigan on Sunday afternoon with rain looming, Clint Bowyer's crew chief made a two-tire call on what would turn out to be the final pit stop. Bowyer made the strategy work against teammate Kevin Harvick, holding the No. 4 off until the caution flew for a wet track. With darkness approaching and the race already running late from a rain-delayed start, NASCAR called it good. It was Bowyer's second win of the season. Kurt Busch made it a 1-2-3 finish for Stewart-Haas Racing. Larson worked his way to the top 20 from a 27th starting position, but suffered a speeding penalty and a wreck that dropped him to 28th at the finish.

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After Michigan Kyle Busch leads the points, but Harvick is ahead on stage wins, playoff points, and overall wins with five to Busch's 4. Bowyer's Michigan victory moved him to 5th in the standings behind Busch, Harvick, and the Penske twins, Joey Logano and Brad Keselowski.

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The Verizon IndyCar series ran a Saturday night race at Texas Motor Speedway. Penske teams qualified 1-2-3, but at race's end only second place finisher Simon Pagenaud was on the lead lap. Four different teams took the top four positions, with Scott Dixon ahead of Pagenaud, Andretti Autosports driver Alexander Rossi, and James Hinchcliffe for Schmidt-Peterson. With two wins and consistent good finishes, Dixon now sits atop the point standings with 357, 23 ahead of second-place Rossi. Indy 500 winner Will Power is third, a further 13 points back. Ryan Hunter-Reay and Josef Newgarden round out the top five in points.

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Sebastian Vettel's Montreal victory puts him back on top in the point standings, 121 to Hamilton's 120. However, Mercedes still holds the lead in the constructor's championship chase, 206 to Ferrari's 189.

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There's racing action this weekend, as both NASCAR's Xfinity and Camping World Truck series race at Iowa. The trucks take to the track at 4 p.m. Saturday, with the Xfinity race scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday. Also this weekend, the 24 Hours of Lemans starts at 5 a.m. Saturday. The race in its entirety will air on the cable channel Velocity. Yeah, I never heard of it either, but it's channel 381 on DirecTV. Check your listings if you have DISH or Spectrum.

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Finally, Roush-Fenway Racing has decided to give veteran Matt Kenseth 10 more races this season in the No. 6 Ford. Kenseth finished 33rd at Michigan, 13th at Pocono, 17th at Charlotte, 14th in the All-Star race (out of 21 starters), and 36th in his season debut at Kansas. Trevor Bayne will be back in the car for the next two weekends, with Kenseth taking over for the four after that. Kenseth will also be at the wheel for Darlington and Indy in September, Dover and Martinsville in October, and the final two races of the season.