- Associated Press - Sunday, March 17, 2013

BRISTOL, TENN. (AP) - Kasey Kahne had victory in sight a week ago in Las Vegas, only to lose to Matt Kenseth despite leading a race-high 114 laps.

He didn’t let it bother him for very long.

“I was frustrated for like five seconds, then I went right from the angry moment to telling the guys how good they did, you know, that day, how well our weekend went, all of that,” Kahne said. “I wasn’t too angry at all, really.”

He had nothing to be angry about this Sunday as Kahne grabbed his first win of the season, and first of his career at Bristol Motor Speedway, by beating Brad Keselowski. The win was the 15th of Kahne’s career, his third since joining Hendrick Motorsports last season.

“This is a big win,” Kahne said. “I love racing for Hendrick Motorsports, Rick Hendrick and the opportunity he gives us. This whole team was flawless again today. Last week, today and the whole season so far.”

After opening the season with a 36th-place finish at Daytona, he’s climbing up the standings and gained another seven spots with his win to seventh. It’s a far cry from last year when a slow start to the year had Kahne sitting 32nd in points after Bristol.

“We’ve gained a lot of spots here in the last two weeks and feel really good about where we’re at, where our team’s at,” Kahne said. “There was a lot that went on during the offseason to get a little bit better. I felt like each one of us needed to get a touch better. So far it’s all paying off. The guys are doing an awesome job.”

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