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NASCAR NEXTEL CUP Bank of America 500

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CONCORD, N.C. Schedule: Thursday, qualifying (ESPN2, 7 p.m.); Saturday, race (ABC, 7 p.m.). Track: Lowe's Motor Speedway (quad-oval, 1.5 miles, 24 degrees banking in turns). Race distance: 501 miles, 334 laps. Last race: Jeff Gordon surged into the lead on the final lap at Talladega Superspeedway then held off teammate Jimmie Johnson to move back on top of the points standings with six races remaining in the Chase for the championship. He leads Johnson by nine points. Last year: Kasey Kahne led a race-high 134 laps en route to his sixth win of 2006 and a season sweep at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Jeff Burton overcame a pit-road miscue to finish third, and retain his hold on the championship standings. Fast facts: Gordon's win at Talladega was his 12th on a restrictor-plate track, moving him past the late Dale Earnhardt for most all-time. Johnson and Gordon have combined for nine wins at Lowe's Motor Speedway, but Gordon has failed to finish any of the last five Cup points events at the track. Non-Chase drivers have won 11 Chase races since the format was introduced in 2004. Dave Blaney's third-place finish last weekend was the best for a Toyota driver this year. ... Juan Pablo Montoya increased his lead in the Rookie of the Year standings to 15 points over David Ragan. Ricky Rudd will get back behind the wheel of the Robert Yates Racing No. 88 Ford this week after missing five weeks with a separated shoulder. Next race: Subway 500, Oct. 21, Martinsville, Va. On the Net: http://www.nascar.com

Being around NASCAR fans

According to Benny thomas, one of nancy pelosi's DEMOCRAT committee chairmen, be sure you get your shot's before associating with NASCAR fans. Maybe we ought to be immunized before being near a DEMOCRAT!