This article is part of our NASCAR Barometer series.
The twists and turns of Infineon Raceway brought out the roadcourse specialists this weekend. Mattias Ekstrom, Boris Said, P.J. Jones and Jan Magnussen were all non-regular NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers who tried their hand in the series on Sunday. The Cup regulars gave a good showing of themselves, as they usually do, despite having to turn right.
As is usual when you cram 43 heavy Sprint Cup cars onto a tight and twisty roadcourse, there was plenty of contact. A number of drivers bounced off of one another, as well as the track's curbs, creating a battle of survival for some teams. A number of drivers did not last the entire distance, and ruined their cars.
It looked as though Marcos Ambrose would take his first career win, but an unfortunate mistake robbed him of victory during the final caution. In an effort to save fuel, Ambrose cut of the engine on the up-hill climb to turn 1. That mistake allowed six cars to pass, effectively gifting the race victory to Johnson who then cruised to the checkered flag.
Jimmie Johnson – Johnson spent significant time in charge at the front of the field Sunday in Sonoma after recording top-10 finishes in the last two races. He seemed to be the only one who could challenge Ambrose and eventually took the win. Johnson's roadcourse skills were on display as he was clearly the best of the oval regulars throughout the race. Good news for Johnson fans is that he