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Blaney Wins Kentucky NNS Race

Info Manager | , RacinToday.com Sunday, September 22 2013

Ryan Blaney takes a victory lap at Kentucky Speedway. (RacinToday/HHP photo by Tim Parks)

RacinToday.com

Ryan Blaney got his first career Nationwide Series win Saturday night when he won the Kentucky 300 at Kentucky Speedway.

Blaney’s victory came in the No. 22 Discount Tire Ford Mustang of Penske Racing.

Austin Dillon finished second and Matt Crafton third.

Blaney was nearly collected by teammate and points leader Sam Hornish Jr. on a restart with 15 laps to go.

Then, on the final restart of the night, Dillon in the No. 3 AdvoCare Chevrolet Camaro attempted to make the pass on Blaney entering Turn 1, but Blaney powered the outside line and pulled ahead from Dillon and the rest of the field over the final nine laps.

“Yeah, we had a great car all night,” said Blaney. “We kept working on it throughout the race, just little tweaks here and there. We were really strong to start out the race and just got better and better as the runs went on. It was really tough the last few restarts to really know what was going to happen. The way the restart rule is now, you never know how big of a push someone can get. I was a little worried being on the outside, but we had a great car to be able get through one and two good and be able to clear them by three and four.

“I’ve said it before, it really speaks numbers how good this team (really) is. To be able to win with four different drivers. That just shows how strong this 22 group is and how strong Penske Racing is as a whole. I want to thank everyone, who made this opportunity possible.”

Hornish rebounded for fourth, while Alex Bowman in the RAB Racing entry posted his first top-five run since the season-opener at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway in February.

Dillon, the grandson of Richard Childress, failed to record his fourth series victory at the 1.5-mile, but did however notch his 10th top-five of 2013 and capitalized on his sixth place run at Kentucky in June.

“We knew we would be good coming here, it’s one of our better tracks and I’m just thankful we had a good run tonight,” said Dillon, still winless in his sophomore season. “It was a solid run, there was just one car better. We needed something. Just a little bit more, we were too tight all night on exit and we tried to get it out of the car and (we) just couldn’t. That 22 has been very tough all year long, no matter who’s gotten in it. They’ve won with four different drivers this year. That’s pretty impressive.”

When asked about his deficit to Hornish, which now stands at 15 points with less than two months of racing remaining, Dillon remained highly optimistic.

“Just let it (points) come to us,” Dillon said. “We’re going to stay here and keep running hard every week. We have to run top-five from here on out.”

NASCAR Nationwide Series Race – Kentucky 300

Kentucky Speedway

1. (2) Ryan Blaney(i), Ford, 200, $80800.

2. (3) Austin Dillon, Chevrolet, 200, $57475.

3. (5) Matt Crafton(i), Chevrolet, 200, $38995.

4. (1) Sam Hornish Jr., Ford, 200, $31290.

5. (20) Alex Bowman #, Toyota, 200, $27590.

6. (7) Drew Herring, Toyota, 200, $24915.

7. (10) Brian Vickers, Toyota, 200, $23265.

8. (13) Jeb Burton(i), Chevrolet, 200, $15265.

9. (18) Cole Whitt, Toyota, 200, $21040.

10. (15) Michael Annett, Ford, 200, $21790.

11. (4) Brian Scott, Chevrolet, 200, $22170.

12. (14) Regan Smith, Chevrolet, 200, $19745.

13. (21) Dakoda Armstrong(i), Chevrolet, 200, $13295.

14. (12) Elliott Sadler, Toyota, 200, $19840.

15. (22) Trevor Bayne, Ford, 200, $19830.

16. (36) Johanna Long, Chevrolet, 200, $18520.

17. (9) Justin Allgaier, Chevrolet, 200, $18415.

18. (6) Joey Coulter(i), Toyota, 200, $18285.

19. (28) Kevin Lepage, Chevrolet, 199, $18172.

20. (24) Jeremy Clements, Chevrolet, 198, $18725.

21. (29) Reed Sorenson, Chevrolet, 198, $17945.

22. (31) Mike Wallace, Chevrolet, 198, $17840.

23. (34) Joe Nemechek, Toyota, 197, $17715.

24. (25) Eric McClure, Toyota, 197, $17585.

25. (26) Jeffrey Earnhardt #, Ford, 197, $17955.

26. (23) Mike Bliss, Toyota, 196, $17375.

27. (16) Nelson Piquet Jr. #, Chevrolet, 194, $17270.

28. (32) Jamie Dick, Chevrolet, 194, $11165.

29. (11) Parker Kligerman, Toyota, Accident, 187, $17040.

30. (17) Brad Sweet, Chevrolet, Accident, 161, $17235.

31. (35) Joey Gase, Chevrolet, Suspension, 113, $10830.

32. (39) Harrison Rhodes, Ford, Engine, 100, $16725.

33. (19) Kyle Larson #, Chevrolet, Brakes, 98, $10635.

34. (8) Travis Pastrana, Ford, Accident, 59, $16545.

35. (38) Ryan Ellis, Toyota, Vibration, 31, $16450.

36. (40) Matt DiBenedetto, Chevrolet, Overheating, 8, $9895.

37. (30) Carl Long, Dodge, Suspension, 8, $9865.

38. (37) TJ Bell, Chevrolet, Transmission, 6, $9836.

39. (33) Blake Koch, Toyota, Rear Gear, 4, $9705.

40. (27) Jeff Green, Toyota, Vibration, 3, $9610.

Average Speed of Race Winner: 121.131 mph.

Time of Race: 2 Hrs, 28 Mins, 36 Secs. Margin of Victory: 2.017 Seconds.

Caution Flags: 9 for 44 laps.

Lead Changes: 6 among 6 drivers.

Lap Leaders: S. Hornish Jr. 1-65; J. Clements 66-67; B. Scott 68; A. Dillon 69-100; R. Blaney(i) 101-107; E. Sadler 108-111; R. Blaney(i) 112-200.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led): R. Blaney(i) 2 times for 96 laps; S. Hornish Jr. 1 time for 65 laps; A. Dillon 1 time for 32 laps; E. Sadler 1 time for 4 laps; J. Clements 1 time for 2 laps; B. Scott 1 time for 1 lap.

Top 10 in Points: S. Hornish Jr. – 962; A. Dillon – 947; R. Smith – 917; E. Sadler – 908; B. Vickers – 902; J. Allgaier – 887; B. Scott – 883; T. Bayne – 868; K. Larson # – 822; P. Kligerman – 783.

Info Manager | , RacinToday.com Sunday, September 22 2013
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