-- Elliott Sadler all but locked up his spot in the Chase for the Nextel Cup in style Sunday, pulling away from Kasey Kahne and Mark Martin on a restart with 10 laps to go to win the Pop Secret 500 at California Speedway.
Sadler, in winning for the second time this year, needs only to start next week's race at Richmond to qualify for the 10-race title chase that begins Sept. 19 at New Hampshire.
Tony Stewart and Matt Kenseth clinched their spots Sunday, joining Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Kurt Busch, seventh in the standings, also has virtually ensured himself of making the top 10.
Kahne, a Nextel Cup rookie, finished second for the fifth time this season. He also finished second in Sadler's previous victory this year, at Texas. Martin was third, and while he and Kahne would have loved to win, they both moved into the top 10 going into the final race before the cutoff.
Ryan Newman, Kahne and Martin now have the final three spots in the top 10.
Jamie McMurray finished fourth Sunday and moved up to 11th in the standings, 25 points behind 10th. Bobby Labonte and Kevin Harvick fell out of the top 10, but they're both still within 56 points of 10th, as are Dale Jarrett and Jeremy Mayfield.
"I am so proud of this team," Sadler said in Victory Lane. "It's a great, great day here in California. This is a dream come true, this is what I came to this team to drive this car for.
"We're California dreaming here tonight."
Brian Vickers, Jeremy Mayfield, Kurt Busch and Michael Waltrip all led early until Martin took over on Lap 62. Martin was largely in control until Sadler took the lead on a yellow-flag pit stop on Lap 106.
Sadler and Kahne then swapped the lead until Lap 130, when Martin got past them both to regain control. Kahne got the lead and Martin was second after a round of green-flag stops that ended just before Derrike Cope's crash in Turn 1 brought out a yellow on Lap 171.
The leaders all pitted again, and several cars took just two tires to shuffle the order. Martin was back in 13th on the restart, while Robby Gordon took the lead. He and Sadler swapped the lead until Sadler got clear on Lap 189 and pulled away as Kahne came around Gordon to second.
Kahne then passed Sadler on Lap 194 and built a lead of more than three seconds. But Martin, who passed Sadler for second on Lap 204, was closing.
Jeff Gordon, the championship points leader when the race began, went out with an engine problem with about 40 laps to go. Meanwhile, on the track, Martin passed Kahne to reclaim the lead on Lap 217.
With the leaders still needing one more pit stop, Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s spin in Turn 4 on Lap 219 brought out a yellow flag. Vickers took two tires and had the lead on the restart on Lap 224, just ahead of Martin, Sadler and Kahne.
Sadler grabbed the lead on the ensuing restart, getting a jump when Vickers and Martin got pinned behind cars on the tail end of the lead lap. Blown engines by Kyle Petty and Ken Schrader then bunched up the field behind him under two more caution flags, with the final one coming on Lap 241 with Kahne second and Martin third as the green flew 10 laps short of the checkered flag.