There hasn't been a repeat champion of the Sprint All-Star Race since the late Davey Allison claimed it in back-to-back seasons in 1991 and 1992. That string will continue to 2013, as defending winner Carl Edwards' Roush-Fenway Ford erupted in a plume of smoke and flames as his engine expired just into the second segment.
Thanks to a variety of strategies on pit road after the opening segment, Denny Hamlin holds the lead ahead of Marcos Ambrose, Matt Kenseth, Paul Menard, and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Of the drivers who pitted under the yellow, Kyle Busch is seventh.
The racing was wild in the middle of the pack after Kurt Busch slapped the wall off turn four and stacked the field up. Several cars jostled back and forth, often three-wide, with the scramble only paused when Edwards' engine failure drew the first caution flag of either race tonight, competition cautions aside.