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NASCAR NEWS 

NASCAR Texas: Jimmie Johnson retakes points lead with win

Jimmie Johnson wins Texas NASCAR Sprint Cup race 2013

Jimmie Johnson re-established his NASCAR Sprint Cup points lead with just two rounds to go by dominating at Texas Motor Speedway.

The five-time champion led 255 of 334 laps in the 500-mile race, putting him seven points clear of title rival Matt Kenseth, who finished fourth.

Johnson's early opponent was polesitter Carl Edwards, who he overtook after 10 laps but twice lost the lead to in pitstops.

Each time Johnson's Hendrick Chevrolet was able to hunt down and repass Edwards' Roush Fenway Ford, which eventually faded before dropping out with engine problems.

Kenseth worked his way forward to challenge Johnson as the race went on. A slightly slow mid-distance pitstop gave him ground to make up, but it was a pitlane speeding penalty on his next stop that really hurt.

The Joe Gibbs Toyota driver just managed to stay on the lead lap as he rejoined in 16th, and by the end had clawed his way back to fourth.

There was a tantalising moment for Kenseth when Johnson's antepenultimate pitstop was slow and dropped him to fifth place.

But Johnson rapidly blasted back past all those in front of him to retake the lead and ultimately win by four seconds over team-mate Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Joey Logano lost out to Earnhardt at the final stops and came home third.

Brad Keselowski had a couple of spells in the lead and finished sixth, behind Kasey Kahne.

Kyle Busch slammed the wall early on yet did remarkably little damage to his Gibbs Toyota.

After a quick pitstop for checks, he rejoined in 29th and still on the lead lap, fought back through to second, then broke the pitlane speed limit and could only finish 13th.

Jeff Gordon had edged back into the championship contention when he won at Martinsville last week, but crashing due to a blown tyre at Texas ended his slim hopes.

Results - 334 laps:

Pos  Driver              Team/Car                         Time/Gap
 1.  Jimmie Johnson      Hendrick Chevrolet           3h18m05.000s
 2.  Dale Earnhardt Jr   Hendrick Chevrolet                +4.392s
 3.  Joey Logano         Penske Ford                       +5.999s
 4.  Matt Kenseth        Joe Gibbs Toyota                  +7.754s
 5.  Kasey Kahne         Hendrick Chevrolet               +11.170s
 6.  Brad Keselowski     Penske Ford                      +12.365s
 7.  Denny Hamlin        Joe Gibbs Toyota                 +17.521s
 8.  Kevin Harvick       Childress Chevrolet              +17.779s
 9.  Ryan Newman         Stewart-Haas Chevrolet           +20.905s
10.  Clint Bowyer        Waltrip Toyota                   +21.337s
11.  Mark Martin         Stewart-Haas Chevrolet           +24.002s
12.  Greg Biffle         Roush Fenway Ford                +24.037s
13.  Kyle Busch          Joe Gibbs Toyota                 +26.828s
14.  Martin Truex Jr     Waltrip Toyota                   +28.568s
15.  Paul Menard         Childress Chevrolet                +1 lap
16.  Ricky Stenhouse Jr  Roush Fenway Ford                 +2 laps
17.  Kurt Busch          Furniture Row Chevrolet           +2 laps
18.  Parker Kligerman    Swan Toyota                       +2 laps
19.  Elliott Sadler      Waltrip Toyota                    +2 laps
20.  Juan Pablo Montoya  Earnhardt Ganassi Chevrolet       +3 laps
21.  Marcos Ambrose      Petty Ford                        +3 laps
22.  Austin Dillon       Childress Chevrolet               +3 laps
23.  Kyle Larson         Phoenix Chevrolet                 +3 laps
24.  Jeff Burton         Childress Chevrolet               +3 laps
25.  Danica Patrick      Stewart-Haas Chevrolet            +3 laps
26.  David Gilliland     Front Row Ford                    +3 laps
27.  Aric Almirola       Petty Ford                        +4 laps
28.  David Reutimann     BK Toyota                         +4 laps
29.  Trevor Bayne        Wood Brothers Ford                +4 laps
30.  JJ Yeley            Baldwin Chevrolet                 +4 laps
31.  Jamie McMUrray      Earnhardt Ganassi Chevrolet       +5 laps
32.  Travis Kvapil       BK Toyota                         +5 laps
33.  Casey Mears         Germain Ford                      +6 laps
34.  Landon Cassill      Circle Sport Chevrolet            +6 laps
35.  Dave Blaney         Baldwin Chevrolet                 +8 laps

Retirements:

     Joe Nemechek        NEMCO Toyota                     190 laps
     Carl Edwards        Roush Fenway Ford                187 laps
     Jeff Gordon         Hendrick Chevrolet               147 laps*
     Josh Wise           Front Row Ford                   145 laps
     Bobby Labonte       JTG Daugherty Toyota             144 laps
     Timmy Hill          FAS Lane Ford                    125 laps
     David Ragan         Front Row Ford                    81 laps
     Michael McDowell    Parsons Ford                      27 laps

* Running again at chequered flag
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