Kurt Busch Beats Jimmie At The Glen
Polesitter Kurt Busch won Saturday’ afternoon’s Zippo 200 NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Watkins Glen International.
Busch, who was substituting for injured Brad Keselowski in the No. 22 Penske Racing Dodge, held off Sprint Cup sparring partner Jimmie Johnson of JR Motorsports after a green/white/checkered restart to get the victory.
“I knew that it was going to be a good finish,” Busch said. “On the restart at the end, all heck could have broken loose. I actually drove it in a little too deep; that right-front tire was cold.”
Joey Logano finished third in Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota. Fourth was Kyle Busch, Logano’s teammate and the leader of a race-best 48 laps.
“When they threw the green (on the final restart), we were just all out trying to get the spots we could,” Logano said. “Everyone got into turn one kind of crazy and that helped too. We got into fourth and were able to get by Kyle for third there coming to the line. I just wish we could have had more laps at the end. I was kind of hoping we would have a couple of green-white-checker finishes, because we had those fresh tires. But I’ll take third-place, especially on a road course.”
Rounding out the top 10 were Paul Menard, Ron Fellows, Aric Almirola, Trevor Bayne and Elliott Sadler.
Point leader Ricky Stenhouse Jr. finished 15th.
Busch’s victory was his third victory in 12 NASCAR Nationwide Series races. It was his first victory and first top-10 finish in 2011 and his second victory and third top-10 finish in three races at Watkins Glen International.
Equally as happy as the winner was the driver he was subbing for.
“This is great,” Keselowski, who broke his ankle during a testing wreck at Road Atlanta two weeks ago, said. “This deal with Kurt didn’t come together until Tuesday. We left our driver debrief and talked about the Cup weekend at Pocono, I walked up to Kurt and said, ‘Hey Kurt, I think it would be cool if you drove my car this weekend. I just don’t think that I can pull it off.’ He was like a kid in a candy store. His face lit up and I knew that he wanted to drive this car. I knew how bad he wanted to win and I’m glad to see his hard work and passion for the team pay off with a victory.”No Comment