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Kyle Busch Ends NNS Drought, Wins At PIR

Info Manager | , RacinToday.com Saturday, March 2 2013

Kyle Busch is a NNS winner again. (RacinToday/HHP file photo by Alan Marler)

RacinToday.com

Kyle Busch drove to Victory Lane on Saturday at Phoenix International Raceway.

Busch, who won the pole in a laydown earlier in the day, overcame a speeding penalty that dropped him to 22nd position for a restart on Lap 44.

He worked his way through traffic in short order, however. Busch passed Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Matt Kenseth for the lead on Lap 89. He lost the top spot briefly by pitting under caution on Lap 152, as Brad Keselowski and three other drivers remained on the track, but Busch regained the lead on Lap 164, clearing Keselowski as the cars streaked into Turn 3.

Busch stayed out front the rest of the way. The victory was his first in the No. 54 Toyota and a record 52nd in the Nationwide Series.

Keselowski held second, and Justin Allgaier ran third and leaves Phoenix tied for the series lead with Sam Hornish Jr., who came home seventh. Trevor Bayne and Elliott Sadler completed the top five.

Jimmie Johnson, using a rare Nationwide Series appearance to get some extra laps on a track that has befuddled him since its resurfacing in 2011, finished 12th.

The race wasn’t yet two laps old when Johanna Long drove hard into Turn 3 and tagged the back of the Ford of Hornish, the series leader entering the race. With the front of her car damaged by the contact, Long slapped the wall exiting Turn 4, triggering a chain-reaction wreck that collected five other cars, including those of Hornish (who had fallen behind her) and Travis Pastrana.

“I don’t know; it just took off on me,” Long said of her contact with the wall. “I got in a little too hard, there (into) Hornish, felt bad, got under him. I got into the gas, and it just took off.

“I definitely didn’t want to finish like this. It’s really disheartening. I feel really bad. I don’t know what else to say.”

The aftermath of the wreck turned bizarre when the scoring transponder from Jamie Dick’s car (another victim of the accident) lodged in the nose of Hornish’s Ford. Though Hornish lost two laps on pit road while the transponder was removed, NASCAR restored the No. 12 to the lead lap because the extraction — to prevent Dick’s car from being scored improperly – was ordered by the sanctioning body.

Hornish’s travails weren’t quite over. After restarting sixth on Lap 109, Hornish spun in Turn 2 a lap later to bring out the fifth caution but remained on the lead lap. The nose and hood of his car heavily taped, Hornish salvaged the seventh-place finish.

NASCAR Nationwide Series Race – Dollar General 200 fueled by AmeriGas

Phoenix International Raceway

Avondale, Arizona

Saturday, March 2, 2013

1. (1) Kyle Busch(i), Toyota, 200, $70700.

2. (9) Brad Keselowski(i), Ford, 200, $53450.

3. (5) Justin Allgaier, Chevrolet, 200, $45334.

4. (4) Trevor Bayne, Ford, 200, $35841.

5. (15) Elliott Sadler, Toyota, 200, $31241.

6. (6) Austin Dillon, Chevrolet, 200, $27491.

7. (19) Sam Hornish Jr., Ford, 200, $25226.

8. (3) Matt Kenseth(i), Toyota, 200, $17470.

9. (8) Aric Almirola(i), Ford, 200, $16325.

10. (21) Brian Scott, Chevrolet, 200, $23816.

11. (13) Regan Smith, Chevrolet, 200, $14575.

12. (7) Jimmie Johnson(i), Chevrolet, 200, $13975.

13. (14) Kyle Larson #, Chevrolet, 200, $21066.

14. (22) Mike Bliss, Toyota, 200, $19691.

15. (23) Nelson Piquet Jr. #, Chevrolet, 200, $20016.

16. (30) Blake Koch, Toyota, 200, $19441.

17. (2) Brian Vickers, Toyota, 199, $12375.

18. (36) Reed Sorenson, Chevrolet, 198, $18841.

19. (11) Parker Kligerman, Toyota, 198, $19066.

20. (27) Jeffrey Earnhardt #, Ford, 198, $19191.

21. (35) Ryan Sieg(i), Chevrolet, 198, $18416.

22. (32) Jason White, Toyota, 197, $18291.

23. (24) Hal Martin #, Toyota, 197, $18166.

24. (28) Dexter Stacey #, Ford, 195, $11425.

25. (33) Harrison Rhodes(i), Ford, 194, $18241.

26. (38) Juan Carlos Blum #, Ford, 193, $17866.

27. (40) Mike Harmon, Chevrolet, 192, $17941.

28. (12) Travis Pastrana, Ford, 189, $17666.

29. (20) Eric McClure, Toyota, Engine, 187, $17616.

30. (37) Joey Gase, Chevrolet, Transmission, 150, $17866.

31. (18) Alex Bowman #, Toyota, 142, $17511.

32. (25) Mike Wallace, Chevrolet, 139, $17451.

33. (10) Kevin Harvick(i), Chevrolet, Accident, 101, $10745.

34. (39) Daryl Harr, Chevrolet, Engine, 95, $17376.

35. (17) Jamie Dick, Chevrolet, Accident, 59, $10681.

36. (29) Joe Nemechek, Toyota, Accident, 50, $16641.

37. (26) Jeff Green, Toyota, Handling, 17, $9940.

38. (31) Josh Wise, Chevrolet, Brakes, 10, $9886.

39. (34) Chase Miller, Chevrolet, Vibration, 8, $9770.

40. (16) Johanna Long, Chevrolet, Accident, 2, $16381.

Average Speed of Race Winner: 96.192 mph.

Time of Race: 2 Hrs, 04 Mins, 45 Secs. Margin of Victory: 1.943 Seconds.

Caution Flags: 7 for 38 laps.

Lead Changes: 6 among 4 drivers.

Lap Leaders: K. Busch(i) 1-40; M. Kenseth(i) 41-48; B. Vickers 49-55; M. Kenseth(i) 56-88; K. Busch(i) 89-152; B. Keselowski(i) 153-162; K. Busch(i) 163-200.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led): K. Busch(i) 3 times for 142 laps; M. Kenseth(i) 2 times for 41 laps; B. Keselowski(i) 1 time for 10 laps; B. Vickers 1 time for 7 laps.

Top 10 in Points: S. Hornish Jr. – 79; J. Allgaier – 79; B. Scott – 73; E. Sadler – 69; P. Kligerman – 65; R. Smith – 65; K. Larson # – 63; N. Piquet Jr. # – 62; A. Dillon – 61; A. Bowman # – 54.

Info Manager | , RacinToday.com Saturday, March 2 2013
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