Just like clockwork. When the calendar turns to June, Tony Stewart gets in gear. He hadn't even had a Top 5 finish this season until Sunday at Dover International Speedway when he passed Juan Montoya with three laps to go to win his first race of the season and at the same time break a 30-race winless skid.

It looked like Jimmie Johnson was firmly in control after edging Montoya on the last restart but NASCAR judged that Johnson jumped the restart and sent him down pit road as a penalty. That put Montoya in the lead with Stewart gaining on each lap until he finally caught him, then passed him on the outside. That left Montoya to settle for second and still looking for his first victory on an oval.

Jeff Gordon came in third with Kyle Busch and Brad Keselowski completing the Top 5.

Johnson led 147 laps, but with the penalty he finished a lap back in 17th place but holds on to the points lead 30 points up on Carl Edwards.

With the victory, Stewart puts himself in position for a possible wild card spot in the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship. The last two spots in the Top 12 are determined by victories among drivers ranked 11th through 20th and now he has one.

Matt Kenseth and Martin Truex, Jr., both in the Top 10 entering the race, both left early with blown engines. For Truex, he dropped from 9th to 14th. Kenseth fell from third to fourth.

Next weekend it’s the first of two stops this season in the Poconos.