Top 5 NASCAR Cup Series Winners and Races at Fontana
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Auto Club Speedway is a relatively new track, having been added to the Cup Series schedule in 1998.
Since then, the Fontana 2-mile oval has hosted 30 races, with 16 different winners.
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Top 5 NASCAR Cup Series Race Winners at Fontana
5. 12 drivers – 1 Win
The list begins with a 12-way tie for fifth place.
Mark Martin, Jeremy Mayfield, Rusty Wallace, Kurt Busch, Elliott Sadler, Greg Biffle, Kasey Kahne, Carl Edwards, Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski, Kyle Larson, and Martin Truex Jr. All have one win at Fontana.
Mayfield only led 60 laps at the track in 15 starts, the fewest among this group of drivers.
Martin, with 324 laps led, is first among the 12, and sixth overall, followed by Kurt Busch, with 298, and Biffle, with 297.
Busch, along with Harvick, Keselowski, Larson, and Truex, still has a chance to add a second victory.
The 2004 champion is the track’s all-time leader in pole-positions, with four.
Tony Stewart – 2 Wins
Fontana was the only track on the Cup Series schedule that Stewart had never won at.
He finally scored the elusive first victory during the 2010 playoffs.
The three-time champion then added a second victory in February 2012.
Stewart ended his career with 24 starts at Fontana, ranking sixth in top 5 finishes with seven and in top 10 finishes with 13.
His 332 laps led are good enough for fifth in the all-time list.
3. Jeff Gordon and Matt Kenseth – 3 Wins
Gordon won two of the first three races held at his home track, in 1997 and 1999.
He then added a third win in 2004, which was also his last at Auto Club Speedway.
The four-time champion is tied for second with ten top 5 finishes and is in third place with 648 laps led in 26 starts.
Kenseth’s first win came in 2006, setting up a dominant run for the 2003 champion.
He went on to win three editions of the Auto Club 400 in four years, adding victories in 2007 and 2009.
Kenseth is third in top 5 finishes with nine, is tied for second in top 10s with 15 and is fourth in laps led with 571.
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2. Kyle Busch – 4 Wins
Busch’s first Cup Series win came at Fontana in 2005.
He wouldn’t make the trip back to victory lane until 2013, however.
The two-time champion did come close on a few occasions, narrowly missing out on winning the 2011 Auto Club 400 after leading 151 laps.
Busch won back-to-back races in 2013, 2014, and then added a fourth victory last year.
The defending Auto Club 400 winner is second in laps led with 806, while also tying for second with ten top 5s and 15 top 10s.
1. Jimmie Johnson – 6 Wins
Johnson’s first career win also came at Fontana, back in 2002.
The home track is one of the seven-time champion’s favorite ovals.
Johnson’s impressive average finish of 7.6 in 26 starts is by far his best at any track.
The Cup Series legend leads all stats at Fontana with 13 top 5 finishes, 17 top 10s and 980 laps led.
As he gears up for one final go at his home track, Johnson could add another impressive mark.
The seven-time champion has completed 100% of the race laps in 25 starts at Fontana.
Top 5 NASCAR Cup Series Races at Fontana
It’s fair to say that Fontana isn’t the most popular track among NASCAR fans.
The 2-mile California oval usually struggled to produce the close, intense racing we often see happen elsewhere.
In recent years, however, that trend has started to change, at least when it comes to the racing itself.
NASCAR axed the second race of the year and shortened the February round to 400 miles.
The changes did create some interesting results.
Fontana’s late-race restart has produced some of the best finishes in recent years.
Let’s take a look at the top 5 NASCAR Cup Series races at Fontana that are definitely worth remembering.
5. 2002 NAPA Auto Parts 500
While the race itself wasn’t particularly great, the 2002 NAPA Auto Parts 500 has a special place in NASCAR history.
This was Jimmie Johnson’s first-ever Cup Series win, in his 13th start.
Johnson lined up fourth and led 62 laps throughout the race.
He moved to the front following a restart with 13 laps to go.
Running on two tires, the rookie had to hold off veteran Ricky Rudd and a fast-charging Kurt Busch.
Johnson would then go on to add five more victories at his home track, holding the record for most Cup Series wins at Fontana.
4. 2015 Auto Club 400
After a relatively uneventful race, the action kicked off in the final laps following a late restart.
Kurt Busch jumped out in front, leading a three-way battle against teammate Kevin Harvick and former teammate Brad Keselowski.
Keselowski got around the defending champion and entered the final lap chasing Busch.
The Team Penske driver then pulled off the winning move at the exit of turn 2, holding off Busch’s final charge at turn 4 to claim the win.
3. 2011 Auto Club 400
The race was fairly uneventful, with only 18 lead changes, the fifth-lowest in the track’s history.
Kyle Busch dominated the action, leading three-quarters of the distance, and looked set for an easy win.
However, a late restart with only ten laps to go completely changed the race.
Busch’s car struggled with short runs, and he couldn’t hold off Jimmie Johnson, who took the lead with three to go.
The fight for the lead killed off their momentum, allowing Kevin Harvick to join the battle.
Harvick relegated Busch to third and chased down Johnson.
He then slingshot past the then five-time champion exiting turn 4 on the final lap to win at home for the first time.
2. 2013 Auto Club 400
The race had an interesting setting, as former teammates Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano had some bad blood carry over from the previous race at Bristol.
As fate would have it, in a fairly uneventful evening, Logano and Hamlin found themselves battling for the win following the final restart.
The pairing moved past leader Kyle Busch, with Logano taking over the top spot.
Hamlin closed down the gap and went for the move on the last lap.
Logano naturally did not give an inch, and the two rubbed wheels throughout the lap.
The fight slowed them down, allowing Busch to move past on turn 4 to take the win.
Hamlin and Logano made contact one final time, which sent both cars into the wall.
The Joe Gibbs driver crashed into the pit road and suffered a broken vertebra, which forced him to sit out the next four races.
1. 2014 Auto Club 400
The race set a record with 36 lead changes and had an unusually high number of flat tires.
Longtime race leader Jimmie Johnson looked set for another home track victory, having held off Jeff Gordon and Matt Kenseth.
But a blow right front tire with ten to go ended his hopes, handing the lead to Gordon.
Gordon’s own hopes then took a blow when Clint Bowyer spun out with a flat left rear to set a green-white-checkered.
As drivers mixed strategies in the pits, Landon Cassill led the field to the green with three to go.
Running on four used tires, the veteran naturally couldn’t hold on to the lead, and chaos erupted on the restart.
Tony Stewart jumped to the front, followed by teammate Kurt Busch, Kyle Busch, and Kyle Larson.
As the two Stewart-Haas cars slowed each other down, the Kyle duo managed to find a way by on the final lap, with Busch leading Larson.
The Joe Gibbs driver then held off the Californian to make it back-to-back wins at Fontana.
NASCAR Cup Series Winners and Races at Fontana FAQ
Which driver has the most wins at the Fontana Auto Club Speedway
No one has more wins at the Auto Club Speedway than Jimmie Johnson with six wins under his belt at the track.
What is the length of the Auto Club Speedway?
The Fontana Auto Club Speedway is a two-mile-long oval.