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Kyle Busch wins 9th Nationwide race of '08

by Pete McCole
Saturday, October 11, 2008

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Kyle Busch celebrates winning the Dollar General 300 at Lowe's Motor Speedway. It was Busch's ninth NASCAR Nationwide Series victory in 27 starts
Todd Warshaw/Getty Images for NASCAR
Kyle Busch pulled off the season sweep at Lowe’s Motor Speedway on Saturday night, holding off Jeff Burton in a final four-lap shootout to win the Dollar General 300 NASCAR Nationwide Series event.

After a long night that included several cautions and two red flags for rain, Busch took the lead following a round of pit stops with 30 laps to go and held on through three late caution flags to notch his ninth win of the season in the Nationwide season.

Brian Vickers was third, followed by Clint Bowyer and Carl Edwards.

“It was a phenomenal night for us, my car was pretty strong. We weren’t that strong yesterday, we had some motor issues, thankfully all that worked out,” said Busch. “This has been one of those phenomenal seasons for us here on the Nationwide side, how many times do you have a season like this?”

Burton elected to take four tires during his final stop and dropped back to ninth place, but quickly moved back up to slide into second with 15 laps to go.

Busch pulled out to over a one second lead over Burton until a final six-car melee with eight laps to go bunched up the field to give Burton once last run at Busch.

Busch pulled away on the restart and held the low line over the final four laps and easily topped Burton by .662 seconds at the line.

“This was the best car we had all year,” said Burton, making his last Nationwide Series start of the season. “We closed the gap on (Busch), but he was doing a great job, every win they’ve got they deserve. They’ll be another fight – to this point they’ve had the better of us, but we won’t quit.”

Busch faced some criticism following the race for brake checking during the final three restarts – directly leading to the multi-car crash on lap 192.

“I was under the impression I was getting brake-checked,” said Vickers. “I had my front tires locked up and I was running second or third at the time.”

Busch flatly denied that he was brake-checking, saying he did Burton a “favor” by closing up the gap before the restart.

“I didn’t brake check, I kept the same speed I’ve been running the whole time coming up to the restarts,” said Busch. “I looked in my mirror and saw Burton back about a car-length and he started inching forward. I wasn’t going to let him have the momentum on me, so I waited until he was on my back bumper and I stopped and then I went.

“I don’t think I did anything wrong, I actually think I did Jeff Burton a favor because NASCAR’s rules says if you hang back more than a car length, you may be black-flagged.”

“Until NASCAR makes a rule that you have to maintain a steady speed, (brake checking) is going to continue,” said Burton. “This isn’t the first time, it’s been going on for a long time. I hate to put it on NASCAR, but they make the rules, if he doesn’t get in trouble for doing it, then he’s not doing anything wrong.”

Bowyer’s fourth-place finished allowed him to retain the series points lead by 196 points over Edwards.

Q&A with the race winner

How does it feel to win tonight?

“It's definitely pretty awesome to be back in victory lane especially at Lowe's Motor Speedway, one of my favorite tracks. Really got to thank NOS Energy Drink, Z-Line Designs, all these guys on this Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.  It was just phenomenal tonight.  It was a lot of fun out there to race those guys and have a great win for us.  You know, to be back in victory lane feels awesome.”

How good was your race car?

“The car was phenomenal.  It could go anywhere you wanted it to.  I could run the top.  I could run the bottom.  I managed to stay on the bottom just so I didn't burn up the right front tire.  Really want to thank the fans for sticking around tonight.  I know it was a long show with the rain delays and whatnot.  I'm glad they all hung out. And, of course, the ones on TV, as well.”

Did you have some issues on the restarts?

“You know, you're not supposed to leave any room behind you, or in front of you I should say on (Jeff) Burton's part.  He was back there about a car length, a car length and a half, or so.  And I could see him carrying up to my rear bumper and he had the momentum and I wasn't going to let him have the momentum on the restarts cause he'd pull low and pass me getting into (turn) one.  So, I waited until he got to my rear bumper and then I went.  He had to stop and I went.  That's what jumbled up the field back there and everything.  I apologize to those guys back there, but I got a race to win, too.”

What does it mean for you to win again at Charlotte?

“It was a phenomenal night for us.  That car was pretty strong -- we didn’t think it was that strong yesterday.  We felt like we had some motor issues with it so we changed the ignition and some stuff -- the distributor, carburetor and all that.  It seems as though it all ran well today so thankfully it all worked out and that NOS Energy Drink Toyota was just fast.  It was pretty phenomenal to drive -- a lot of fun and a great race car to be able to run on the top, run on the bottom and pass cars any which way we needed to.  Fortunately, it was pretty hard to make a mistake on pit road on what to do with it  -- we could take two tires or no tires and just pretty much stay out front.  The car was fast enough that it could hold its own pace.”

Do you think you should have competed for the NNS championship?

“No -- it’s a lot more fun to not have to worry about points and just go out there and race for wins.  I was thinking about that while I was out there -- where I would be if I just gave myself a 10th-place finish in the races that I missed -- that I could calculate the points and see where I was.  I don’t know where that would put me.  It’s a lot easier to go out there and race everybody and all the competitors for wins instead of having to concentrate on a particular guy or a particular couple guys and seeing what they do week in and week out.  It’s probably no different in the ‘Chase,’ but at least this year I don’t have to worry about racing for the championship anymore -- we can just worry racing for wins and getting up there to get a couple more before the year’s out.”

Results

FIN

ST CAR DRIVER MAKE SPONSOR PTS/BNS LAPS STATUS
1 16 18 Kyle Busch Toyota NOS Energy Drink 195/10 200 Running
2 2 29 Jeff Burton Chevrolet Holiday Inn / Holiday Inn Express 175/5 200 Running
3 42 32 Brian Vickers Toyota Dollar General 170/5 200 Running
4 5 2 Clint Bowyer Chevrolet BB&T 160/0 200 Running
5 3 60 Carl Edwards Ford Scotts WinterGuard Fertilizer 160/5 200 Running
6 6 33 Kevin Harvick Chevrolet Rheem 150/0 200 Running
7 9 47 Kelly Bires Ford Samaritan's Feet 146/0 200 Running
8 30 88 Brad Keselowski Chevrolet U.S. Navy 142/0 200 Running
9 1 17 Jamie McMurray Ford CitiFinancial 143/5 200 Running
10 31 7 Mike Wallace Toyota GEICO 134/0 200 Running
11 33 9 Kasey Kahne Dodge Hellmann's 130/0 200 Running
12 12 6 David Ragan Ford Discount Tire 127/0 200 Running
13 13 111 Scott Lagasse Jr. Chevrolet America's Incredible Pizza Company 124/0 200 Running
14 4 20 Joey Logano Toyota Farm Bureau Insurance 126/5 200 Running
15 7 59 Marcos Ambrose Ford Kingsford Tailgate at Home 118/0 200 Running
16 26 28 Kenny Wallace Chevrolet U.S. Border Patrol 115/0 200 Running
17 8 10 Dave Blaney Toyota Dollar General 112/0 200 Running
18 18 38 Jason Leffler Toyota Great Clips 109/0 200 Running
19 29 1 Mike Bliss Chevrolet Miccosukee Resort & Gaming 111/5 200 Running
20 36 22 Andrew Ranger Dodge Supercuts / Tide / Wal-Mart 103/0 200 Running
21 35 161 Brandon Whitt Ford Specialty Racing 100/0 197 Running
22 40 24 Eric McClure Chevrolet Hefty Odorblock 97/0 195 Running
23 41 01 Danny Efland Chevrolet Shred 360 94/0 195 Running
24 15 99 David Reutimann Toyota Aaron's Dream Machine 91/0 194 Running
25 39 81 D.J. Kennington Dodge Vector Security 88/0 193 Running
26 37 52 Tony Raines Chevrolet Long John Silver's / Weber 85/0 190 Running
27 43 209 John Wes Townley Ford Zaxby's 82/0 186 Accident
28 22 30 Stanton Barrett Chevrolet Donato's 79/0 186 Running
29 34 27 Jason Keller Ford Kleenex / Bi-Lo 76/0 179 Running
30 24 40 Bryan Clauson * Dodge Fastenal 73/0 175 Running
31 32 64 David Stremme Chevrolet Avis 70/0 163 Running
32 19 66 Steve Wallace Chevrolet 5-Hour Energy 67/0 159 Running
33 10 5 Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet Lowe's 64/0 140 Accident
34 14 12 Justin Allgaier Dodge Penske Truck Rental 61/0 125 Accident
35 21 231 Jeff Green Chevrolet Key Motorsports 58/0 121 Accident
36 20 19 Chase Miller * Dodge Motorola / Verizon Wireless 55/0 80 Accident
37 28 25 Bobby Hamilton Jr. Ford Curly's 52/0 79 Accident
38 25 05 Burney Lamar Ford 31-W Insulation / CertainTeed 49/0 42 Vibration
39 27 173 Kevin Lepage Dodge Derrike Cope Inc. 46/0 31 Transmission
40 23 35 Danny O'Quinn Jr. Ford Team Rensi Motorsports 43/0 22 Electrical
41 11 90 Johnny Chapman Chevrolet MSRP Motorsports 40/0 8 Vibration
42 17 91 Terry Cook Chevrolet MSRP Motorsports 37/0 8 Vibration
43 38 4 Derrike Cope Chevrolet JVC 34/0 3 Susp.

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