Long Pond, Pa. Kasey Kahne dominated Sunday at Pocono Raceway for his second victory in the last three Sprint Cup Series points races. Counting his win in the All-Star race last month, Kahne has been to Victory Lane three times in the past four events.
And he probably should thank his fans for this season-saving run that has pushed him into championship contention.
Kahne's fans voted him into the All-Star event, and after picking up the $1 million first prize, he vowed to parlay the victory into a surge through the summer schedule. Although he bobbled with a 31st-place finish last week at Dover, he owned the weekend at Pocono.
Kahne started from the pole, overcame an early pit-road penalty that dropped him to 38th and led a race-high 69 of the 200 laps in his Dodge.
"Never. I've never had a car that dominant before," Kahne said. "This one stayed the same all day long. It was so good all day long."
Brian Vickers was second for his best finish since joining Red Bull Racing at the start of last season, and Denny Hamlin was third to give Toyota two cars in the top three.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. was fourth and appeared winded after racing over four hours on the hottest day so far of the NASCAR season. Temperatures hovered around 90 degrees all day.
Jeff Burton was fifth and was followed by Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth and Kurt Busch. Carl Edwards and Mark Martin rounded out the top 10.