After the race, Kenseth's auto failed the postrace laser inspection system. Matt Kenseth, who found himself leading late after 133 lap leader Kyle Busch's vehicle faded and 123 lap leader Martin Truex Jr. faced yet another extraordinary piece of bad luck (a broken shifter), may have come away with the win, but he followed it immediately by failing NASCAR's post-race laser inspection. Busch won last year's New Hampshire 301, but Matt Kenseth was the most recent Sprint Cup victor at NHMS, winning the Chase for the Sprint Cup race hosted by the track last fall.
"You're always pleased to be in Victory Lane", said the 44-year-old Kenseth, who won for the second straight time at the 1.058-mile flat track and for the 38th time in his career. We made some great changes for run two and really I felt like we had probably the best vehicle all day.
The 2015 Sprint Cup champion also won the last race at Kentucky Speedway and his six wins have come in just 10 races.
Among those to benefit from all the late wrecks and cautions were top-five finishers Stewart, Logano and Biffle - none of whom ran up front the rest of the day. He entered the race in 30th in his final Cup season.
Getting his opportunity to drive the No. 88 Chevy when Earnhardt was sidelined with concussion-like symptoms, Bowman had a top-10 run going until contact with Edwards' Toyota on pit road started tire issues that culminated in Bowman sliding into Kurt Busch's vehicle in Turn 3 on Lap 271.
Harvick was hardly happy over his top-five finish. "We've got just a little bit of work to do to get our cars faster".
That allowed Kenseth, Busch's Joe Gibbs Racing teammate, to cruise to the top and snatch the lead with fellow JGR teammate Denny Hamlin with 30 laps and he drove away on the final restart with 11 to go in the 301-mile race. He and first-year crew chief Mike Bugarewicz exchanged texts dealing with setup notes on Saturday night, after Stewart flew to OH to oversee the Kings Royal sprint auto race at Eldora Speedway, which he owns. He snapped an 84-race losing streak last month at Sonoma and was fifth last week at Kentucky Speedway.
IndyCar: Will Power used pit strategy to grab his third victory of the season and close in on Team Penske teammate Simon Pagenaud in the race for the IndyCar championship.
"That was awesome. That was just something really, really special that actually gave me some confidence going to Indy", Busch said.
Kenseth had an 1.982-second lead over Tony Stewart at the finish. 019 seconds in a drag race against Kevin Harvick. Jamie McMurray and Ryan Newman were sixth and seventh, respectively.
Jimmie Johnson will lead the field to the green from the pole. Austin Dillon, 14. Danica Patrick, 15.
He went on TV after the race and blasted his Stewart-Haas Racing No. 4 Chevrolet pit crew for continued poor stops that cost him a serious shot at the checkered flag.
Kyle Busch (eighth) and Carl Edwards (20th) qualified for the Chase, joining Keselowski as other locks for the 16-car Chase. When Kurt Busch lost a tire with 20 laps to go, his bid expired. Trevor Bayne, 24. Clint Bowyer, 25. Alex Bowman filled in behind the wheel of the No. 88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet.