Auto Racing / Sports

Drought at Brickyard 400 continues for Toyota drivers

INDIANAPOLIS -- Toyota drivers still haven't won NASCAR's Brickyard 400, but they keep knocking on the door.

The three Toyota drivers at Joe Gibbs Racing -- Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin and Matt Kenseth -- finished second through fourth, respectively, behind winner Jeff Gordon on Sunday.

A Toyota also has finished second in the last four Sprint Cup Series races.

"We're starting to turn the corner," Hamlin said. "We've been working hard to try to run well all year. We've been off."

Toyota has two victories this season, Hamlin's at Talladega, Ala., in early May and Busch's at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana in late March.

"Things will pay off sooner or later," Busch said. "We'll start winning some."

Austin Dillon follows brother's big day

Rookie Austin Dillon finished 10th a day after his younger brother, Ty, won his first career race in NASCAR's second-level Nationwide Series at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

"Hard to back up that win Ty got yesterday, but I will definitely take a top-10 in this series," Austin said.

Dillon, driving the No. 3 Chevrolet for his grandfather's team, Richard Childress Racing, had started 17th.

"As a team we just want to build momentum, and that was a solid day," Dillon said.

CARL EDWARDS TO LEAVE TEAM

NASCAR driver Carl Edwards won't return to the Roush Fenway Racing team next year.

Roush Fenway said its three-driver Sprint Cup Series lineup in 2015 would be Greg Biffle, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Trevor Bayne.

Biffle and Stenhouse are on the team with Edwards. Bayne, who races mostly in the Nationwide Series, is being promoted to a full-time Cup ride.

The exclusion of Edwards, who drives the No. 99 Ford, was not unexpected. Rumors have circulated for months that he was looking to move to a new team, possibly Joe Gibbs Racing.

Edwards declined to discuss his future Sunday morning, telling reporters he was focused on winning the Brickyard 400 and this year's Cup championship. Edwards then finished 15th in the race.

Now in his 10th full season in the Cup series, the 34-year-old Edwards has spent his Cup career with Roush Fenway.

Edwards, known for his celebratory backflips after a victory, has 23 Cup victories in 356 starts. He finished second in the title standings in 2008 and 2011. He won the Nationwide Series championship in 2007.

"I will always be thankful for Carl's contribution and the role he played in many Roush Fenway wins and championships," team co-owner Jack Roush said in a statement.

(c)2014 Los Angeles Times

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