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NASCAR NEWS 

Sonoma NASCAR: Carl Edwards takes first road course victory

Carl Edwards wins Sonoma NASCAR 2014

Carl Edwards won Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup round after a gruelling 110-lap, caution-filled road course race at Sonoma, claiming the first non-oval victory of his career.

Poleman Jamie McMurray led initially until he was passed by AJ Allmendinger on lap nine. Kevin Harvick was the next leader, passing Allmendinger on lap 22.

Harvick was then dealt a strategy blow when the first yellow of the day, for Landon Cassill's engine explosion, came out before he had made his first pitstop.

He tumbled to 14th after pitting under yellow, but carved his way back into the lead fight.

Allmendinger and McMurray again swapped the lead before the second yellow, caused by Ryan Truex stalling on the track.

As they pitted, Harvick then led again until being passed by Jimmie Johnson, before a flurry of yellows - the second of which was for the biggest shunt of the day when Dale Earnhardt Jr clipped Matt Kenseth, who piled head-on into a tyrewall. He was unhurt.

Marcos Ambrose hit the front at a lap 80 restart with a power move on Clint Bowyer, who was the other frontrunning car on a similar strategy to him.

Moments later, as Johnson was passing him for third place, Bowyer spun at Turn 11 after contact from McMurray (and a left-rear puncture) and was hit hard by Harvick, effectively eliminating two top cars.

Allmendinger was then spun out after also being hit by Earnhardt, and bouncing off Kasey Kahne and Brian Vickers.

Only in the last 25 laps did Edwards hit the front, thanks to his Roush team's strategy.

Edwards managed to get through the race with only two stops to Jeff Gordon's three, while third-placed Earnhardt visited the pits five times, which meant he had the freshest tyres at the end to carve his way through.

Second placed Gordon attempted a last-corner lunge at Edwards, but the Ford star hung on.

Earnhardt finished third, ahead of McMurray, Paul Menard, Kahne and Johnson.

Results - 110 laps:

Pos  Driver              Team/Car                     Time/Gap
 1.  Carl Edwards        Roush Fenway Ford        2h51m30.000s
 2.  Jeff Gordon         Hendrick Chevrolet            +0.592s
 3.  Dale Earnhardt Jr   Hendrick Chevrolet            +3.300s
 4.  Jamie McMurray      Ganassi Chevrolet             +6.052s
 5.  Paul Menard         Childress Chevrolet           +7.213s
 6.  Kasey Kahne         Hendrick Chevrolet            +8.986s
 7.  Jimmie Johnson      Hendrick Chevrolet            +9.385s
 8.  Marcos Ambrose      Petty Ford                   +10.654s
 9.  Greg Biffle         Roush Fenway Ford            +11.904s
10.  Clint Bowyer        Waltrip Toyota               +13.238s
11.  Ryan Newman         Childress Chevrolet          +14.402s
12.  Kurt Busch          Stewart-Haas Chevrolet       +16.679s
13.  Casey Mears         Germain Chevrolet            +17.595s
14.  Brian Vickers       Waltrip Toyota               +18.595s
15.  Martin Truex Jr     Furniture Row Chevrolet      +19.387s
16.  Joey Logano         Penske Ford                  +19.766s
17.  Austin Dillon       Childress Chevrolet          +20.684s
18.  Danica Patrick      Stewart-Haas Chevrolet       +21.292s
19.  Tony Stewart        Stewart-Haas Chevrolet       +22.649s
20.  Kevin Harvick       Stewart-Haas Chevrolet       +23.109s
21.  David Gilliland     Front Row Ford               +23.371s
22.  Brad Keselowski     Penske Ford                  +25.851s
23.  Aric Almirola       Petty Ford                   +29.288s
24.  Michael McDowell    Leavine Ford                 +30.110s
25.  Kyle Busch          Joe Gibbs Toyota             +31.013s
26.  Denny Hamlin        Joe Gibbs Toyota             +34.748s
27.  Cole Whitt          BK Toyota                    +34.859s
28.  Kyle Larson         Ganassi Chevrolet            +42.212s
29.  Alex Bowman         BK Toyota                    +43.661s
30.  Michael Annett      Baldwin Chevrolet            +46.319s
31.  Ricky Stenhouse Jr  Roush Fenway Ford              -1 lap
32.  Reed Sorenson       Baldwin Chevrolet              -1 lap
33.  Justin Allgaier     HScott Chevrolet               -1 lap
34.  JJ Yeley            Xxxtreme Chevrolet             -1 lap
35.  Boris Said          Fas Lane Ford                  -1 lap
36.  David Ragan         Front Row Ford                 -1 lap
37.  AJ Allmendinger     JTG Daugherty Chevrolet       -2 laps
38.  Tomy Drissi         NEMCO Toyota                  -2 laps
39.  Alex Kennedy        Circle Sport Chevrolet       -6 laps*
40.  Josh Wise           Parsons Chevrolet            -15 laps
41.  Ryan Truex          BK Toyota                    -19 laps

* Not running at finish

Retirements:

     Matt Kenseth        Joe Gibbs Toyota              74 laps
     Landon Cassill      Hillman Chevrolet             29 laps
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