Kyle Busch Becomes The King Of Corn Country
Kyle Busch passed Kevin Harvick for the lead with 24 laps to go and went on to win the U.S. Cellular 250 Nationwide Series race at Iowa Speedway on Saturday night.
Busch led 183 of the first 250 laps but surrendered the lead to Harvick on a pit stop with about 50 laps to go. Havrick got the lead by taking just two tires while Busch took four. But Busch quickly jumped to second place and then blew past Harvick on the fresh tires.
The victory was the ninth of the season for Busch. He led 209 laps.
“Pretty phenomenal the cars these guys put out,” he said. “I was worried there with Harvick taking two tires. I was like, ‘Man, same thing as last year. I’m going to get beat by two.’ But, I got into my rhythm and I got going and just started clicking laps and got up to Harvick there and beat him.”
Busch said he was supposed to hitch a ride back to the track at Pocono – where Sunday’s Spring Cup race will be held – with Harvick after the race.
“Hopefully he waits for me so I can get my ride home,” Busch said.
Harvick finished second while Jason Leffler was third.
“He was a little bit better on the restarts,” Harvick said.
Points leader Brad Keselowski was fourth while Carl Edwards, second in points, finished 10th.
“The last pit stop, we took two and a bunch of guys took four (tires),” Keselowski said. “I agree with our strategy. Just so many guys took two that we just couldn’t get by all of them. It was a solid fourth-place for us. I thought that we had a second-place car. I don’t think that we had anything for Kyle, he was really strong. We were really fast; we just didn’t get what we needed to put our Discount Tire Dodge in Victory Lane. We ran well and I’m proud of all my guys.”
The victory was the 75th of Busch’s NASCAR career.
“It’s pretty big,” he said. “Man, it’s a lot of them, but it’s not quite where I want to be. The big number is 200 so hopefully I can get there. We’re 25 away from cracking halfway there and I might be able to get it here in the next two years so that would be pretty cool.”
Young Michael Waltrip Racing driver Trevor Bayne was impressive again on Saturday night. He got involved in a multi-lap fight with Busch and eventually finished fifth.
“I learned so much from following Kyle,” Bayne, the polesitter, said. “He deserves every bit of the credit he gets. He’s in great equipment, great crew chief (Jason Ratcliff) and he’s an unbelievable driver.
“That first 50 laps he was sideways the whole time and I followed him up and learned that top groove. How to get the car straight to run off of the corner and get good drive. Our car was really free at the beginning, but as the night came on we got tighter and we kept getting tighter and tighter and that’s what really got us at the end. If that thing would’ve ended in daylight we probably could’ve got our first win here. But, we’re so happy about these top-fives every weekend. Three poles in a row, I mean, I hear that’s not very heard of so that’s awesome for this Aaron’s Dream Machine team. We’re just as excited as we can be.”
Not quite as excited was Steve Wallace, who finished just behind Bayne.
“Most disappointed I’ve ever been in my life, man,” Wallace said. “I had an awesome car those last two runs. We kept pulling air out of the left sides, dropping the track bar, and the thing kept getting better and better and better and better. There ain’t no reason to even talk about it, because we finished sixth. But if we would’ve got out front, I think I would’ve had a shot to win it, I really do.
“The guys had awesome pit stops, I mean incredible pit stops all day – and on the money stop, we screwed it up. It’s another top-10, man, but sixth to 10th is all we can do. We’ve got to get in the top five. We’ve got these cars handling now, but if it ain’t one thing, it’s another. Every time I’ve ever had a shot to win a race, something always gets screwed up.”No Comment