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AAA Texas 500 Update: Brad Keselowski leads as race enters latter stages

When you run 36 points-paying races over the course of the year, you're not always going to have barn-burners. Some events are just not going to be the most scintillating. Some just, shall we say, fall short.

Through nearly 400 miles, the AAA Texas 500 has fallen short. It has been an exercise in how difficult wheeling a stock car can be, and unfortunately when drivers are fighting just to keep their car under them, it's tough to battle with one another and create an exciting show.

Sprint Cup championship challenger Brad Keselowski leads the way at the Texas Motor Speedway, a track on which he has struggled to find results before today. Keselowski - who entered the day two points behind Jimmie Johnson - could assume the point lead if he holds on.

Jeff Gordon, who suffered through all kinds of misery at Texas when the track first opened in 1997 (and didn't win there until 2009), has got his No. 24 Impala in the runner-up position. Kyle Busch runs third in Joe Gibbs' No. 18 Toyota. He's dominated Texas in Nationwide competition, winning five-straight races there at one point, but he has never won a Sprint Cup race there.

Rounding out the top-five is Johnson, who started from the pole and dominated the race's opening 300 miles but has faded a little of late. Johnson has led 163 laps - nearly half a full-race distance at Texas - and therefore has the extra point for leading the most laps sewn up. With Keselowski's Dodge now showing the way, that point very well could come in handy if things don't turn back into Johnson's favor before the conclusion of the event.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.