Jamie McMurray worked some strategy to get track position for the final 10 lap shootout at the Sprint All-Star race. McMurray then used a bold move on the outside of Carl Edwards on the restart to and then held off Kevin Harvick take his first ever victory at the Sprint All-Star Race.
“This is just an awesome moment,” said McMurray. “I think this is so different from winning the Daytona 500 or the Brickyard because there are no points and the mentally going into that final segment.
“Knowing there was a million dollars on the other end of this, I can’t even explain to you what it’s like holding up a check that big, it’s crazy.”
Kyle Busch won the first segment of the race, but was later taken out after tangling with Clint Bowyer and getting hit hard by Joey Logano.
Kasey Kahne won segments two and three, but ended segment four in the wall which effectively ended his night. Harvick won that fourth segment.
Drivers lined up for a critical four tire pit stop according to their average finish over the first four segments. With Kahne starting rear of the field because of the accident, Harvick lead McMurrary, Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt, Jr and Edwards down the pit lane. Edwards’ crew gave him the lead for the restart with McMurray coming off the pits second.
“Jamie just did a perfect job on the restart,” Edwards told the media after the race. “He ended up sweeping around me and dragging me down and it was a drag race.
Kansas native Clint Bowyer, who raced his way into the even by winning the Sprint Showdown on Friday night, had a middle of the pack car most of the night and his seventh place finish marked his high water mark of the night. He did make a pretty impressive save of his car in the wreck that took out Kyle Busch in segment two.
“Just going for it with Kyle back there,“ said Bowyer. “His brother (Kurt Busch) was really tight and I think he was fighting two tires or staying out or something and about got in the fence and kind of caused Kyle to make an evasive maneuver, which kind of moved me down. It’s just racing for a million bucks.
"He hit me and that thing swapped ends several times going down the back straightaway and I still don’t know what happened or how he even wrecked. I heard him really close to me come flying by and I had my hands full. It’s kind of disappointing because our car was really, really good until that happened and then it was just kind of mediocre.”
McMurray had Wichita based Cessna on board as an associate sponsor for Saturday’s race. The aeronautics company serves as a primary sponsor for the 1 car for several races though out the season.