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Kyle Busch Wins Brickyard; Makes It Three In A Row

| Managing Editor, RacinToday.com Sunday, July 26 2015
Kyle Busch  is a winner for the third straight week. (RacinToday/HHP file photo by Christa L Thomas)

Kyle Busch is a winner for the third straight week. (RacinToday/HHP file photo by Christa L Thomas)

By Jim Pedley | Managing Editor
RacinToday.com

A lot of people consider Kyle Busch to be the best restart man in NASCAR. He certainly was on Sunday as three times over the final eight laps, Busch used perfect restarts to win the Brickyard 400 Sprint Cup race at Indianapolis Motor sprint-logo-08Speedway.

The victory was the fourth in the last five races and third in a row for Busch, who missed the first 11 races of of the season after braking bones in his leg and foot in an XFINITY Series race at Daytona in the season-opening weekend.

“I just can’t believe this run right now,” Busch said. “I just can’t believe what’s going on.”

The victory was the first for Busch at crown-jewel Indy and improved his chances of making the season-ending Chase playoff even though he missed those 11 races – NASCAR ruled that Busch could make the Chase were he to win a race and put himself in the top 30 in points when the playoffs start.

Busch headed out of Indy 23 points out of 30th place.

 “It’s really a treat to win here at Indy,” the Joe Gibbs Racing driver said. “Nothing better than being in Victory Lane. Nothing better than being in Victory Lane for one of the biggest wins in my career here in Indy.”

Joey Logano of Team Penske finished second and Kevin Harvick of Stewart-Haas Racing third. Fourth was Martin Truex Jr.

“I guess Kyle’s back,” Logano said afterward.

Brad Keselowski had the lead when the final green flag stint of the race began with 36 laps to go, but because of pit strategy and fuel supply, he was doomed.

Behind and apparently with enough fuel were Harvick and Carl Edwards.

With 20 laps to go, a debris caution flag waved, Keselowski pitted and Harvick had the lead. Edwards restarted second with 14 laps to go while Busch was third, Truex Jr. fourth and Logano fifth.

On the restart, Edwards and Logano banged doors, Edwards got sideway and Busch blew past both to claim second place. But a lap later, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Hendrick Motorsports teammate Kasey Kahne got together and another yellow flag waved.

On the restart with eight laps to go, Busch, starting on the inside, edged past Harvick and into the lead. Once in the lead, Busch pulled away to a five-length lead on Harvick. But with six laps to go, the yellow flag again waved for debris to set up a restart with two to go.

Busch opted for the bottom line on the restart, lining up in front of Logano, who gave him a bump push on the previous restart.

On the restart, Busch again broke free as Harvick spun his tires. Moving past Harvick were Logano and Truex. But before a half lap was completed, Trevor Bayne spun back in the field, out came the yellow and the race went to a green/white/second restart situation.

“I think everybody did a great job,” Harvick said, “just in that, I guess, second‑ or third‑to‑last restart where the No. 22 (Joey Logano) and No. 18 (Kyle Busch) were able to get hooked up and kind of drive by us and I lost control of the race there and didn’t really have what I wanted on the restarts once the No. 18 got control, the speed was too high and I spun the tires on the next one, and just didn’t get the restarts all put together like I needed to.  Just didn’t all pan out there at the end, but everybody did a great job all day.”

On the restart, Busch again got the advantage but right on his rear bumper was Logano.

On the final lap, Busch pulled away to a five-lap advantage and took the checkered flag.

“He had the superior car,” Logano said. “He was definitely fast.  I think he showed all day he was the best car, just working the strategy and it worked out good for them.  We just didn’t have enough.  I tried to make some runs and tried to have a good restart there at the end, which we did, but the 78 was there to push him ahead.  I tried to do everything I could do.  When you come here to the Brickyard all you want to do is win and that’s it.  It’s either win or finish last in my eyes.  That’s all that matters when you come to a race track like this.  It’s like going to Daytona, it’s all about the win and we’ll have to wait another year.”

“We’re a championship contending team,” Busch said, “we just have to be championship eligible. Thank the good Lord for bringing me back when he did. Obviously thanking him for all the success I’ve had in my life, where I’m at and all my blessings. To get me back as quick as he did, to preserve through that and that deficit. We’re still continuing on, we can’t have bad days. I don’t know that any of that matters, we’re going to bask in this moment here.”

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Race – Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at the Brickyard

Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Speedway, Indiana

Sunday, July 26, 2015

  1. (9) Kyle Busch, Toyota, 164, $424191.
  2. (2) Joey Logano, Ford, 164, $367408.
  3. (6) Kevin Harvick, Chevrolet, 164, $356825.
  4. (13) Martin Truex Jr., Chevrolet, 164, $283170.
  5. (17) Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 164, $249875.
  6. (7) Clint Bowyer, Toyota, 164, $239498.
  7. (23) Matt Kenseth, Toyota, 164, $236326.
  8. (14) Kurt Busch, Chevrolet, 164, $206615.
  9. (5) Kyle Larson, Chevrolet, 164, $217073.
  10. (31) Brad Keselowski, Ford, 164, $233856.
  11. (43) Ryan Newman, Chevrolet, 164, $211040.
  12. (30) Ryan Blaney(i), Ford, 164, $168540.
  13. (1) Carl Edwards, Toyota, 164, $179740.
  14. (11) Paul Menard, Chevrolet, 164, $174640.
  15. (12) Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 164, $209976.
  16. (10) Jamie McMurray, Chevrolet, 164, $194531.
  17. (18) Sam Hornish Jr., Ford, 164, $194660.
  18. (28) Chase Elliott(i), Chevrolet, 164, $158515.
  19. (20) Greg Biffle, Ford, 164, $192723.
  20. (16) Casey Mears, Chevrolet, 164, $186748.
  21. (3) David Ragan, Toyota, 164, $188654.
  22. (8) Dale Earnhardt Jr., Chevrolet, 164, $173840.
  23. (26) AJ Allmendinger, Chevrolet, 164, $187523.
  24. (27) Kasey Kahne, Chevrolet, 164, $170365.
  25. (25) Austin Dillon, Chevrolet, 164, $191701.
  26. (24) Landon Cassill(i), Chevrolet, 164, $153590.
  27. (15) Danica Patrick, Chevrolet, 164, $160490.
  28. (4) Tony Stewart, Chevrolet, 164, $179854.
  29. (37) David Gilliland, Ford, 163, $172948.
  30. (34) Michael Annett, Chevrolet, 162, $151740.
  31. (32) Michael McDowell, Ford, 162, $146685.
  32. (40) Matt DiBenedetto #, Toyota, 162, $161843.
  33. (41) Cole Whitt, Ford, 162, $155482.
  34. (39) Brett Moffitt #, Ford, 162, $145635.
  35. (29) Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Ford, 161, $153385.
  36. (36) Brian Scott(i), Chevrolet, 161, $145285.
  37. (21) Justin Allgaier, Chevrolet, 161, $153148.
  38. (22) Aric Almirola, Ford, 161, $176386.
  39. (38) JJ Yeley(i), Toyota, 160, $135450.
  40. (33) Trevor Bayne, Ford, Accident, 155, $176025.
  41. (42) Timmy Hill(i), Ford, 111, $127450.
  42. (19) Jeff Gordon, Chevrolet, 110, $171986.
  43. (35) Alex Bowman, Chevrolet, Engine, 78, $119950.

 

Average Speed of Race Winner:  131.656 mph.

Time of Race:  03 Hrs, 06 Mins, 51 Secs. Margin of Victory:  0.332 Seconds.

Caution Flags:  9 for 36 laps.

Lead Changes:  16 among 6 drivers.

Lap Leaders:   C. Edwards 0; J. Logano 1-11; C. Edwards 12-31; K. Harvick 32-45; J. Logano 46-61; K. Harvick 62-83; B. Keselowski 84; Kyle Busch 85-92; K. Harvick 93-120; D. Ragan 121-123; B. Keselowski 124; D. Ragan 125-126; B. Keselowski 127-141; K. Harvick 142-152; Kyle Busch 153-161; J. Logano 162; Kyle Busch 163-164.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led):  K. Harvick 4 times for 75 laps; J. Logano 3 times for 28 laps; C. Edwards 1 time for 20 laps; Kyle Busch 3 times for 19 laps; B. Keselowski 3 times for 17 laps; D. Ragan 2 times for 5 laps.

Top 16 in Points: K. Harvick – 777; J. Logano – 708; D. Earnhardt Jr. – 677; J. Johnson – 675; M. Truex Jr. – 668; B. Keselowski – 638; M. Kenseth – 615; Kurt Busch – 612; J. Mcmurray – 602; D. Hamlin – 591; J. Gordon – 575; R. Newman – 563; P. Menard – 558; K. Kahne – 558; C. Bowyer – 538; C. Edwards – 519.

 

| Managing Editor, RacinToday.com Sunday, July 26 2015
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