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Auto Racing

It's hard to repeat at New Hampshire Motor Speedway

The Tampa Tribune
Published:   |   Updated: March 23, 2013 at 12:34 AM
LOUDON, N.H. -

Blame the tough racetrack, the Car of Tomorrow or simply circumstance. Whatever the reason, there have been no repeat winners in the past four years of NASCAR Sprint Cup racing at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

If that trend holds, Greg Biffle, who won in September, won't be in Victory Lane today.

Nor will Kurt Busch, Clint Bowyer, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, Ryan Newman or Tony Stewart.

That impressive group of drivers includes the past eight Cup winners on the 1.058-mile New Hampshire oval.

"Certainly, this racetrack is one of the harder flat tracks that we go to," Biffle said. "It's really, really flat, and I think that it changes a lot, and the guy that hits it just right that weekend is why you see different winners all the time with no repeat winners."

Stewart started the Cup string when he won the summer race in July 2005. Jeff Gordon, Jeff Burton, Jimmie Johnson and Kurt Busch all won multiple races before that, including season sweeps by Johnson in 2003 and Busch in 2004.

Kurt Busch said at least part of the explanation is the Car of Tomorrow, which began competing on NASCAR's shorter tracks in 2007.

"You can say that the new car has added a different twist because we continually come back to the racetracks that we've seen before with completely different setups and that will create different winners and a trend such as that," Busch said.

Stewart, who also won at Loudon in July 2000, said he has no idea why there has been a string of different winners in New Hampshire.

"I think every year this track changes a little bit and every year everybody gets a little bit better on what it takes to be good here," said Stewart, the series points leader who will start from the pole in today's Lenox Industrial Tools 301. "This is a unique place and I think that's the reason guys every year kind of hit it or miss it."

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