Brad Keselowski Takes the Crown; Jeff Gordon Takes the Win in the Chase for the Sprint Cup Finale

Written by SLN Staff Writer
Brad Keselowski Takes the Crown; Jeff Gordon Takes the Win in the Chase for the Sprint Cup Finale

Photo By: Getty Images

After an exciting 10-week Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, the season finale race at Homestead-Miami Speedway showcased high emotions as Brad Keselowski went on to capture his first-ever NASCAR Sprint Cup Series title at the conclusion of yesterday’s Ford EcoBoost 400.

Keselowski entered the 267-lap race 20 points ahead of five-time champion Jimmie Johnson and had to finish 15th or better to secure championship rights. Throughout the majority of the 400-mile race, Keselowski and Johnson swapped the top spot that kept fans at the edge of their seats as they pondered which driver was executing the perfect pitting strategy. But, with 44 laps to go, an unexpected circumstance occurred in the rear gear of Johnson’s No. 48 Chevrolet that relegated him and his team to the garage area, and eventually, out of the race. Johnson’s unfortunate situation was Keselowski’s gain as he went on to close out the 2012 season with a 15th-place finish and added Sprint Cup Series champion to his NASCAR resume. Clint Bowyer jumped to second in the overall championship point standings, taking the runner-up spot from Johnson by just one point.

In the midst of the championship battle, Kyle Busch led a healthy 191 laps but varying pit strategies amongst all the competitors saw a handful of late-race pit stops for fuel and it was Jeff Gordon and his No. 24 team who perfected their pit calls. After last weekend’s on-track run-in with Bowyer, Gordon bounced back nicely and grabbed the lead with 13 laps to go and held on to score his 87th career victory. Bowyer, Ryan Newman, Busch and Greg Biffle rounded out the top-five finishers.

Watch Keselowski’s championship celebration below…

A full race results list rundown of the 12 Chase drivers and the final championships standings is as follows:

Ford EcoBoost 400 Race Results – Homestead-Miami Speedway
1st – Jeff Gordon
2nd – Clint Bowyer
5th – Greg Biffle
6th – Martin Truex Jr.
8th – Kevin Harvick
10th – Dale Earnhardt Jr.
15th – Brad Keselowski
17th – Tony Stewart
18th – Matt Kenseth
21st – Kasey Kahne
24th – Denny Hamlin
36th – Jimmie Johnson

Final 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Points Standings
1st – Brad Keselowski Leader
2nd – Clint Bowyer – 39
3rd – Jimmie Johnson – 40
4th – Kasey Kahne – 55
5th – Greg Biffle – 68
6th – Denny Hamlin – 71
7th – Matt Kenseth – 76
8th – Kevin Harvick – 79
9th – Tony Stewart – 89
10th – Jeff Gordon – 97
11th – Martin Truex Jr. – 101
12th – Dale Earnhardt Jr. – 155