Kobyluck Emerges as the Winner at Irwindale  by Penny Aicardi
Last Lap Fireworks Decides NASCAR All-Star Showdown Winner
The final 50 laps of the NASCAR All-Star Showdown at Irwindale Speedway (CA) never lacks in excitement. The 50-lap dash to the checkers traditionally results in some of the closest and hardest racing of the weekend. Saturday night was no different.

Matt Kobyluck, the 2008 NASCAR Camping World Series East Champion, received the checkers for the Camping World Series' biggest race of the year when Joey Logano got into Peyton Sellers in turn four on the white flag lap. Kobyluck's victory marked the first time in the history of the event a driver has won the event twice. The Uncasville, Conn. native also won in 2006.

“It comes down to the last lap here - every year. I drove to the bottom to get under them (Logano and Sellers). We were running three-wide for like three laps. It was absolutely crazy,” Kobyluck said. “This deal did not happen by accident. My guys worked hard all week. We unloaded our backup car yesterday and never turned a lap on it and went out and won this thing!”

An intense battle for the lead between Joey Logano and Peyton Sellers came to an ugly end in turn four on the last lap.

Logano, Sellers, and Kobyluck took the green in that order for the final time at lap 242. Sellers emerged the leader, but Logano used the final corner of the final lap to try and reclaim it. Logano got in too hard, hit Sellers, bounced off the wall and kept the throttle in it to get over the line first just a nose before Kobyluck.

NASCAR penalized Logano for aggressive driving and Kobyluck took the win.

“It was pretty clear what was going to happen,” Kobyluck said. “I've seen it enough times and have been involved in this same thing so I laid back. I saw Joey just drive in there, go to the bottom, and he was going to do the slide job. He drove in there so hard that if Peyton wasn't there he would have smacked the wall. It's just one of those deals.”

Logano was credited with a 40th place finish.

“I crossed the finish line first, but it is what it is. It's NASCAR's call,” said Logano. We came out here to win and I feel like we did that, but we don't have a trophy. It's the All-Star race: no points, nothing, and going for the gusto. Between the three of us we were racing hard there at the end. You've got to do what you've got to do. You've got to try it. I didn't mean to put him in the fence. I was just trying to get a big run and trying to get there.”

Sellers, who battled adversity from the beginning of the race, finished 13th.

“I didn't have any question how Matt was going to race me and I didn't have any question on how Jason (Bowles) was going to race me,” Sellers said after the race. “I really didn't think Joey was going to race me like that. I showed him a lot of respect last year in exactly the same situation. We see who the bigger person is at the end of the day. I don't wish anything bad on him and I didn't get too harsh with him in the car. I just wish he would have shown me the same respect.”

It was a lot of fun up until that point,” Sellers continued. “We had our own battles tonight. We got in two wrecks and had to go to the back. We ran in about 20th all day and then with about 100 to go things just started going our way. Every time we found a wreck we found a hole.”

Kobyluck, who started 23rd, only led a single lap of the Showdown at lap 244. Brian Ickler led the most laps at 100, but was taken out by three-time Truck series Champion Ron Hornaday Jr. following a restart at lap 141. Hornaday went to the bottom in turn four and then drove up into Ickler. A total of twelve cars were involved in the accident, including Sellers, Ricky Carmichael, and Eddie MacDonald.

“I'm extremely disappointed, and a huge loss of respect for Ron Hornaday tonight. It is what it is and I can't do anything about it now,” said Ickler.

Ickler's car was too damaged to return to the track after the accident and he was credited with a 31st place finish.

Trevor Bayne, who will not compete in the NASCAR Camping World Series East this year, finished an impressive second place, and was a threat in the top-five for a good portion of the event. Bayne was one of the 12 cars that got collected in the Ickler/Hornaday incident so had to make up a lot of ground in the final 50-lapper.

“I burned up my stuff somewhat. I had to make up some ground in a hurry,” he said. “When I got to sixth or seventh we finally got a caution, which was what I needed. I would have loved to win this thing, but when you overcome so much adversity you have to be happy with a second.”

Jason Bowles finished third.

At Toyota Speedway at Irwindale
Irwindale, CA
Lap length: 0.5 miles

(Start position in parentheses)

1. (23) Matt Kobyluck, Uncasville, Conn., Chevrolet, 250 laps, 53.457 mph, $34,500.
2. (6) Trevor Bayne, Knoxville, Tenn., Chevrolet, 250, $23,630.
3. (2) Jason Bowles, Ontario, Calif., Ford, 250, $17,000.
4. (30) Johnny Borneman, Ramona, Calif., Chevrolet, 250, $15,500.
5. (39) Matt Crafton, Tulare, Calif., Toyota, 250, $16,000.
6. (13) Ron Hornaday, Jr., Palmdale, Calif., Chevrolet, 250, $10,000.
7. (16) Mike David, Modesto, Calif., Toyota, 250, $10,000.
8. (20) Marc Davis, Mitchelville, Md., Toyota, 250, $11,500.
9. (22) Jim Inglebright, Fairfield, Calif., Chevrolet, 250, $9,200.
10. (11) David Mayhew, Atascadero, Calif., Chevrolet, 250, $8,750.
11. (24) Todd Souza, Aromas, Calif., Chevrolet, 250, $7,500.
12. (27) Moses Smith, Tempe, Ariz., Toyota, 250, $8,250.
13. (21) Peyton Sellers, Danville, Va., Chevrolet, 249, $9,500.
14. (40) Jim Warn, Aurora, Ore., Chevrolet, 249, $7,250.
15. (31) Jason Patison, Corona, Calif., Chevrolet, 248, $7,000.
16. (15) Alex Kennedy, Aztec, N.M., Chevrolet, 248, $5,800.
17. (18) Auggie Vidovich, Lakeside, Calif., Ford, 247, $5,700.
18. (8) Antonio Perez, Mexico City, Mexico, Dodge, 245, $8,600.
19. (34) Jamie Dick, Albuquerque, N.M., Chevrolet, 238, $6,550.
20. (14) Alex Haase, Las Vegas, Nev., Chevrolet, 233, engine, $5,500.
21. (37) Brett Thompson, Jerome, Idaho, Chevrolet, 231, $6,400.
22. (4) Eric Holmes, Escalon, Calif., Toyota, 219, $6,300.
23. (29) Steve Park, East Northport, N.Y., Chevrolet, 201, $8,250.
24. (36) Jarit Johnson, El Cajon, Calif., Chevrolet, 197, $5,200.
25. (17) Eric Richardson, Bakersfield, Calif., Chevrolet, 194, $5,150.
26. (7) Nick Lynch, Burley, Idaho, Dodge, 188, suspension, $5,100.
27. (12) Eddie MacDonald, Rowley, Mass., Chevrolet, 181, accident, $8,100.
28. (26) Jason Fensler, Wilton, Calif., Chevrolet, 155, accident, $5,100.
29. (1) Chris Johnson, Claremont, Calif., Ford, 154, accident, $8,100.
30. (19) Austin Dillon, Lewisville, N.C., Chevrolet, 153, $8,100.
31. (3) Brian Ickler, San Diego, Calif., Chevrolet, 144, accident, $8,100.
32. (35) Andrew Myers, Newport Beach, Calif., Toyota, 144, accident, $5,000.
33. (5) Jeff Barkshire, Auburn, Wash., Dodge, 144, accident, $6,000.
34. (28) Ricky Carmichael, Clearwater, Fla., Chevrolet, 142, accident, $8,000.
35. (38) Jonathon Gomez, Twin Falls, Idaho, Chevrolet, 53, accident, $5,000.
36. (9) Ryan Foster, Anderson, Calif., Ford, 46, accident, $5,000.
37. (32) Jamie Hayes, Norlina, N.C., Chevrolet, 9, accident, $8,000.
38. (25) Scott Steckly, Milverton, Ontario, Chevrolet, 8, accident, $8,000.
39. (33) John Salemi, Nashua, N.H., Dodge, 8, accident, $5,000.
40. (10) Joey Logano, Middletown, Conn., Toyota, 0, penalty, $5,000.

Race Statistics

Time of Race: 2 hours 20 minutes 18 seconds
Margin of Victory: .482 seconds
Fastest Qualifier: C.Johnson (98.366 mph, 18.299 seconds)
Caution Flags: 13 for 86 laps.
Lead Changes: 18 among 8 drivers.
Lap Leaders: C.Johnson 0; J.Bowles 1-6; C.Johnson 7-17; E.Holmes 18-33; B.Ickler 34-63; E.Holmes 64-72; B.Ickler 73-142; J.Logano 143; T.Bayne 144; J.Logano 145-161; J.Bowles 162-166; J.Logano 167-200; J.Bowles 201-212; J.Logano 213-241; J.Bowles 242; J.Logano 243; M.Kobyluck 244; P.Sellers 245-249; J.Logano 250.

There was a healthy crowd assembled for the NASCAR All-Star Challenge at Irwindale.  (NASCAR Photo)
Matt Kobyluck saluted that crowd after his victory.  (NASCAR Photo)
Matt Kobyluck in victory lane.  (Ken Spring Photo)
Trevor Bayne  (NASCAR Photo)
Peyton Sellers (#83) and Matt Kobyluck (#40) race together at Irwindale.  (Ken Spring Photo)
Joey Logano's #08.  (Ken Spring Photo)
Matt Kobyluck  (NASCAR Photo)
Eric Holmes leads the way.  (NASCAR Photo)