June 15, 2009 at 8:07 AM CDT - Updated June 18 at 7:19 PM
Brooklyn, MI (Sports Network) - Mark Martin won Sunday's LifeLock 400 in thrilling battle of fuel mileage at Michigan International Speedway. Jimmie Johnson held the lead before running out of gas just short of crossing the line to start the final lap. Greg Biffle then inherited the top position, but he too ran out of fuel on the backstretch, allowing 50-year-old Martin to lead just the last lap to claim his third victory of the season and the 38th of his Sprint Cup Series career. Martin also his picked up his fifth win in 47 starts at the two-mile track. "I went for the points," Martin said. "I thought those guys were running too hard for us to save gas. I couldn't do both, save gas and run with them." With the victory, Martin moved from 13th to eighth in the point standings with 11 races remaining before the "Chase for the Sprint Cup" championship begins in September. "We were just on the outside looking in on this Chase thing, and this team deserves to be in the Chase," he added. It's the second time a Hendrick driver has won a fuel mileage race at Michigan. One year ago, Dale Earnhardt Jr. ran the final 54 laps without refueling. Earnhardt Jr. had just enough gas to hold off Kasey Kahne in a two-lap overtime finish before his car stalled on the cool-down lap. He snapped a 76-race winless streak, but has not scored a victory since then. Earnhardt Jr. finished 14th in this year's race. Jeff Gordon crossed the line second, giving Hendrick a one-two finish at Michigan. Gordon had to start from the rear of the field after making an engine change prior to Friday's qualifying. "The fuel mileage certainly played out in our favor, and we came home second," Gordon said. Denny Hamlin came in third, while Carl Edwards was fourth. Biffle managed to coast home fifth. "We would've made it, but the 48 (Johnson) came up there and put pressure on us," Biffle said. "I felt like I had a faster car than the 48, but I knew running that pace we weren't going to make it, so I backed it off a little bit." After the final round of pit stops with 47 laps remaining, Biffle beat Hamlin and Johnson out of the pits to take the lead. But Johnson chased down Biffle and slid underneath him to take the edge with six laps to go. Johnson dominated the race, leading 146 laps, but ended up with a 22nd-place finish. "I'm trying to look at the bright side of things because we had such a dominant car and we passed second and third and we went up to get the lead," Johnson said. "It's unfortunate that we ran out of gas, but that is how it is." Juan Pablo Montoya, Tony Stewart, Kurt Busch, Brian Vickers and Clint Bowyer completed the top-10. Stewart slightly increased his lead to 47 points over Gordon.