Busch rallies to win Bristol Truck race
Not even a NASCAR overtime could stop Kyle Busch from rallying back from a speeding penalty at the end of Stage 2 to win Wednesday night’s UNOH 200 at Bristol Motor Speedway.
Busch, forced to the back of the field under penalty to start the final stage, put on a clinic on a Lap 119 restart and utilized the high line to roar through the field and find himself back in the top-10 by Lap 136.
Nearly 30 laps later, Busch found himself on the tails of leaders Johnny Sauter and Matt Crafton. Taking second from Sauter on Lap 163, Busch moved back into the lead four laps later slicing and dicing through lap traffic.
When Austin Wayne Self and Justin Haley tangled with five laps, the final restart left the field one more attempt to swipe the lead away from Busch.
The now five-time Bristol Truck Series winner, however, would have none of it pulling away from Crafton at the Lap 201 restart and cruised to his third NASCAR Camping World Truck Series win of the year and 49th of his career.
“I knew once I got that penalty that I had to go somewhere, other than where everyone else was,” said Busch. “I just started grooming the top and it took about 15 laps for it to come in and then it started going, it was pretty fast.”
“I can’t say enough about all these guys on this Banfield Pet Hospital Tundra, it was awesome. It was awesome when we unloaded. We made some fine-tune adjustments to it. She was really good all-day long.”
“It was a lot of fun to come through the field like that, it kinda gave me some ideas about the rest of the week,” added Busch. “Probably showed a bunch of stuff too. That’s what it’s all about. This is the start of the triple, hopefully we can get it.”
While many welcomed the event’s final caution, Crafton didn’t want to see the yellow flag, as he was sure he was catching Busch as the final laps counted away.
“I searched the top, searched the bottom, and went back to the old faithful bottom,” said Crafton. “One thing I’ve done, I’ve finished second to Kyle way too many times here. All in all, it was a very good truck and we have nothing to hang our heads about.
Busch led the field to green after nearly a two-hour rain delay and dominated the first stage leading all 55 laps.
Busch led the field off pit road but was busted by NASCAR for speeding in section 4, handing the lead back to Crafton for the start of Stage 3 and the eventual comeback for Busch.
The Truck Series will take a one-week break before returning to action north of the border at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park for the running of the Silverado 250 on Sun., Sept. 3.
KYLE BUSCH, No. 46 Banfield Pet Hospital Toyota Tundra, Kyle Busch Motorsports
Finishing Position: 1st
How did you make the top work on the track?
“Well I knew once we got that penalty that I had to go somewhere other than where everybody else was. I just started grooming the top and it took about 15 laps for it to come in and then it started going. It was pretty fast. Can’t say enough about all these guys on this Banfield Pet Hospital Tundra. It was awesome. It was awesome when we unloaded. We made some fine-tune adjustments to it and she was really good all day long. Can’t say enough about Toyota, TRD, Cessna, a Rowdy Manufacturing chassis in victory lane here. Joe Gibbs Racing engines are always strong. Can’t thank them enough. Of course NOS Energy Drink, Incredible Bank, DVX Sunglasses. Everybody at KBM, they obviously do a fantastic job. All the guys and girls and everybody that works on these things make them so fast and make them as fast as they are. Appreciate all the fans as well. I know it’s a late night - everybody watching at home, everybody here. It was a lot of fun to come through the field like that. It kind of gave me some ideas about the rest of the week. Probably showed a bunch of stuff too, but that’s what it’s all about man. This is the start of a triple, so hopefully we can get it.”
A speeding penalty put you at the back of the field, but it looked like you may have found a new groove coming to the front, talk about that.
“Well there was two (grooves). You know options, options are good and when you have options – you know when somebody is up high, you go down low and when somebody is down low, you go up high and it made for an interesting show that’s for sure. I didn’t want to. I’m sure NASCAR liked it. They wanted to, so truck yeah. But pretty fun to be able to go out here and compete with these guys, compete with my guys and it was my late model team essentially you know. Just to go out here and have fun for Banfield, Banfield Pet Hospital team’s here and Cessna and Toyota, TRD, Rowdy Manufacturing, Joe Gibbs Racing Engines, NOS Energy Drink, everybody that’s a part of our team and makes our organization click.”
First career win for your crew chief Cody Glick, how do you feel about that?
“Yeah he’s been with us for a little bit. He’s been a car chief for a long while with Rudy Fugle (crew chief, No. 4), so he’s obviously learned a little bit and done a good job. He doesn’t necessarily have an engineering background or anything, so he’s kind of the old school if you will, like Eric Phillips and you know we’ve obviously had some success with those guys so looking forward to seeing what he can do with our company and what’s in store for him in the future. But more importantly just knocking the rust off these guys, it’s been a while since we’ve been to victory lane in the late model team, but it’s cool to get it here in the trucks.”
Last race for the year and your two wins away from the all-time lead in the truck series, how special is that for you?
“It is, it’s a goal. I mean anything out there you want to shoot for. You obviously want to continue to win as long as you’re running in these series and fortunately I’ve got a great partner with Cessna and they’re going to be with us for five races next year, so we’ll be doing that. What ones, I don’t know yet. But we just got to fill out our schedule and see how all that’s going to play out, but certainly want to continue to rack up some wins and you know fortunately we’ve got sponsors for the next couple years for me to run some races which allows us to run races with other guys. Todd Gilliland looks to have a good schedule for next year, so we’re working on some things for him. All these things will be announced later date, but it’s looking pretty good right now.”
How do you feel about the races coming up in XFINITY and Cup this weekend?
“I feel really confident about it. We were really fast here the last couple of times. I like this place. It’s fun when it’s two grooves cause you can move around, you can really race hard here. That’s the way it used to be when I won here a lot. You know everybody always ventured kind of to the outside and my stuff just kept rolling on the inside all day long and that’s where I was good. Today I just had to kind of work my way around a little bit and try to figure out what was best for me and all over the place today was pretty good. This truck was flying.”
How did the race play out for you?
“Certainly was, I guess, one for our memory bank anyways. To score a victory and not tear our stuff up after winning in the last two races in the first two stages and then screwing up in the final stage and not being able to get to victory lane with the 51 bunch, so that’s been frustrating and thought we did the same thing here tonight, but fortunately we were able to stay out of any sort of trouble there in the third stage and the final laps and get ourselves a victory like we thought we could. We had a truck fast enough to do it and driving through the field there was pretty fun but also pretty challenging in the same respect. I thought once I got close there I started to slow down a little bit and wasn’t sure if I had enough tire to get by those guys and then traffic kind of helped me out. From there it was just about biding your time and seeing what was going to happen to the end and obviously we got that lucky caution there at the end in order to have to do it all over again on a restart but it all worked, so we’ll take it.”
CODY GLICK, crew chief, No. 46 Banfield Pet Hospital Toyota Tundra, Kyle Busch Motorsports
Talk about the truck you provided tonight.
“Right off the truck it was pretty good. We made a lot of small changes through practice and just found a little more speed, but all in all it was pretty good right off the truck. I was pleased.”
MATT CRAFTON, No. 88 Great Lakes Floors/Menards Toyota Tundra, Thorsport Racing
Finishing Position: 2nd
It looked like the bottom was the place to be tonight, but it widened out some toward the end.
“It was a really really good race. The bottom was definitely a little preferred, but you could move around. You could at least run the second and third groove and weren’t like we were in practice, we were literally a second off the pace if you had moved off the bottom. Props to the track for what they did right there, it made some great racing I feel. I just wish we could’ve run that out cause we were running him down there at the end especially when he was in lapped traffic. He picked me in lapped traffic earlier so it was my turn there at the end, but just couldn’t quite get there whenever the yellow came out.”
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