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Press Snoop: Montoya wins.

by Lynne Huntting


Rookie JUAN PABLO MONTOYA/#42 Dodge won his first NASCAR Nextel Cup race at the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway Sunday in Sonoma.

He played cat and mouse with pole-sitter JAMIE McMURRAY/#26 Ford, and his final pass in Turn Two stuck, while McMurray ran out of gas, literally, and finished thirty-seventh.

JPM started thirty-second and was the first Infineon winner to come from further back than thirteenth. It was his first victory in 17 starts. Montoya, 31, hails from Colombia. The last foreign-born Cup victor was Canadian EARL ROSS at Martinsville in 1974.

Montoya said: "I knew it was going to be close, you know. I was told to save as much as you can and if it is, it is. We did a good job. I got my first Nextel Cup win. It's huge."

KEVIN HARVICK/#29 Chevrolet finished second, with JEFF BURTON/#31 Chevrolet third.

It was definitely a fuel mileage race and several front runners gambled and lost on the last lap.

Fourth and fifth were CLINT BOWYER/#07 Chevrolet and GREG BIFFLE/#16 Ford.

JEFF GORDON/#24 Chevrolet finished seventh after starting forty-first. His Hendrick Motorsport team-mate, JIMMIE JOHNSON/#48 Chevrolet, finished seventh after starting forty-second. Gordon still unofficially leads the points, 271 ahead of DENNY HAMLIN/#11 Chevrolet. Johnson is third.

P.J. JONES/#00 Toyota started last, theoretically although DAVID STREMME/#40 Dodge fell to the back at the start for an engine change. Jones finished twelfth, one of the six best Toyota finishes in its Cup debut season.

The weather was hot and breezy.

Gordon had said nothing would bother him this weekend as he was on Cloud Nine. I guess that changed during the race, as he complained to his crew about other drivers including Montoya and RON FELLOWS/#96 Chevrolet.

More to follow...


Related Pictures

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Juan Montoya - #42 Texaco Havoline Chip Ganassi Dodge Avenger   [pic credit: image.net]
Juan Montoya - #42 Texaco Havoline Chip Ganassi Dodge Avenger   [pic credit: image.net]
Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet, speaks during a press conference prior to practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 7, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Carl Edwards, driver of the #99 Fastenal Ford, climbs out of his car during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 7, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford, stands in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 8, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Ford, talks to his crew chief, Paul Wolfe, after failing to advance to the championship round of the Chase for the Spring Cup after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 9, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/ Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 9, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)
Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 Dollar General Toyota, speaks to the media during a press conference after failing to advance to race for the championship in the season finale after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 9, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 9, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images)
Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet, practices for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 8, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/ Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 9, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS finished in 11th place Sunday, November 9, 2014 in the final Eliminator 8 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. Newman advances to the Championship 4 finale next week at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida.(Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS finished in 2nd place Sunday, November 9, 2014 in the final Eliminator 8 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. Gordon just missed out being in the Championship 4 finale next week at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS, races to victory November 9, 2014 in the final Eliminator 8 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. Harvick advances to the Championship 4 finale next week at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS, celebrates his victory with his wife, DeLana, Sunday, November 9, 2014 in the final Eliminator 8 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. Harvick advances to the Championship 4 finale next week at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Christa L Thomas/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 Dollar General Toyota, leads Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Ford, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 9, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, takes the chequered flag to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 9, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet, speaks to the media after failing to advance to race for the championship in the season finale after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 9, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/Getty Images)

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