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Rapid Reaction: Tony Stewart wins Texas 500

FORT WORTH, Texas -- After eight drivers tried to play the fuel mileage game -- and lost -- Tony Stewart found his way to Victory Lane to cap a dominating performance at the AAA Texas 500 on Sunday afternoon.

It was Stewart's fourth victory in eight Chase races, and his 17th top-10 finish of the season. He led a race-high 173 laps in the No. 14 Office Depot Chevrolet.

"I told you last week ... nobody listens to me when I talk anymore" Stewart said in Victory Lane as he fired off the winner's pistols. "We're set on it [winning the title], man. This is just the way it's going to be."

Finishing second, however, was points leader Carl Edwards -- who still holds a three-point lead as the Sprint Cup series heads to Phoenix and, ultimately, to Homestead-Miami Speedway for the season finale.

"He better be worried," Stewart said of Edwards after last week's victory at Martinsville. "That's all I'm saying."

He backed up those words Sunday.

"We are doing exactly what we need to do," Stewart said. "I am really confident right now."

Stewart's winning margin over Edwards was 1.092 seconds. It was his second victory in 20 career Cup races at TMS. He last won here in Nov. 2006.

"I just told him, 'Good job," said Edwards, who leaned into Stewart's window after the race. "I'm proud of my guys for hanging on and for still having the points lead. It really looks like it's truly gonna come down to Tony and I, and that's going to be a lot of fun.

"I give those guys credit. They've done a good job, but now we get to kind of pull out all the stops here. ... I think folks ought to stay tuned. It's gonna get pretty exciting, and I'm just glad Tony and I are out there and we can race for this thing."

Edwards won the final two races of the season in 2010.

Kasey Kahne finished third at TMS on Sunday, and Matt Kenseth and pole-sitter Greg Biffle rounded out the top five.

"Tony was definitely the best car throughout the whole race," said Kahne, who earned his fourth top-10 finish in 15 races at TMS. "We were pretty close.

"Tony and Carl were going for it. It's intense trying to win these races right now. It's super close."

Stewart finished with an average lap speed of 152.707, breaking Edwards' track record of 151.055 -- set in Nov. 2005.

Jeff Burton, Ryan Newman and Mark Martin were among the eight cars trying to gamble on fuel and get the victory.

Newman and Martin had to pit with 10 laps to go. Burton ran out of fuel with five laps to go, and he finished 27th.

"I've never rooted for Burton so hard in my life," Edwards said. "If I could've lended him some fuel, I would have."

Michael McDowell, who filled in for suspended Kyle Busch in the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 Toyota, finished 33rd.