Avondale, AZ – Kasey Kahne snapped a two-year winless streak by taking the Kobalt Tools 500, while Carl Edwards and Tony Stewart maintained their very tight points battle for the Sprint Cup Series championship after Sunday's race at Phoenix International Raceway.
Edwards' second-place finish couple with a third-place run for Stewart allowed Edwards to keep his three-point lead over Stewart heading into next weekend's season-finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Kahne, in his first and only year with Red Bull Racing, took the lead after a round of green-flag pit stops concluded with 13 laps remaining. He beat Edwards to the finish line by 0.8 seconds for his 12th career Sprint Cup win but his first since September 2009 at Atlanta (81 races ago). Kahne is moving over to Hendrick Motorsports to drive the No.5 car in place of Mark Martin next year.
Edwards and Stewart are the only drivers who remain mathematically eligible for the series championship. Jimmie Johnson's bid for a sixth straight title officially ended with his 14th-place finish. Johnson is now 68 points out of the lead.