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McLaughlin Survives Bistol-12th Place Finish

Dale Earnhardt Jr. outlasted a season-high 13 cautions — and overtime — to beat Matt Kenseth in a green-white-checkered flag finish Friday night at Bristol Motor Speedway.Waterloo native Mike McLaughlin-back behind the wheel of a Busch car for the first time in two years-finished the race 12th after a couple of crashes. McLaughlin was called to step in the #25 Team Marines Ford after Bobby Hamilton Jr. was released last week from the ride. It’s not been announced if McLaughlin will drive the car for the rest of the 2004 Busch Series.Earnhardt, who started from the pole, led a race-high 125 laps, but several late cautions bunched up the field and gave the competitors a chance to run him down in the Food City 250.He had a terrific restart with nine laps to go, easily pulling away from Kevin Harvick. But Kenseth pushed past Harvick and was reeling Earnhardt in when the 13th caution flag came out for a wreck involving Tony Raines and Jay Sauter.It set up the first green-white-checkered flag finish of the Busch Series, and Earnhardt once again got a jump to pull away from Kenseth and ride on to his second series win in four starts this season.

 

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