Kyle Busch wins record 15th race of year
CLERMONT, Ind. -- Kyle Busch led 197 of 200 laps in winning the Kroger 200 at O'Reilly Raceway Park in Indianapolis on Saturday night and captured his series-leading sixth NASCAR Nationwide Series victory of the season.
Busch now has 15 wins across NASCAR's top three series, surpassing the record set by two-time NASCAR Nationwide Series champion Kevin Harvick in 2006. It was the 14th NASCAR Nationwide Series win for Joe Gibbs Racing this season, also a new NASCAR Nationwide Series mark, and the 15th win overall for Toyota. Richard Childress Racing had 13 wins last season.
"I was kind of disappointed because I feel like that 15 horsepower cost me the pole," Busch said. "I really got to thank my competitors for doing the complaining they did, because we were able to have good traction control all night long. I feel like that was important, to get off the corners a little bit better than everybody," Busch said from victory lane.
Had Busch not been around, Roush Fenway Racing's up-and-comer, polesitter Colin Braun, 19, may have walked away with his first piece of NASCAR hardware but instead settled for second. Mike Bliss, despite spinning in Turn 2 on Lap 22, came back to finish third, while Scott Wimmer and Josh Wise finished fourth and fifth, respectively. Wise's finish was the best of his series career.
Rookie Cale Gale was sixth, also scoring his best finish to date, besting an eighth-place run earlier this season in Nashville. Fellow rookie Landon Cassill, working with a new crew chief this week in Cam Strader, finished seventh. Busch's JGR teammate Joey Logano, David Ragan and Steve Wallace rounded out the top 10.
There were seven caution flags through the event, four of them coming within the last 100 laps. On Lap 119, Indiana native Bryan Clauson was involved in a wreck after contact from Brad Keselowski. Nearly simultaneously, Kelly Bires smacked the wall after cutting a tire in Turn 3.
The remainder of the caution flags were single-car incidents.
Clint Bowyer continues to lead Keselowski in the season standings with a 173-point lead. Neither driver was a factor during the 200-mile race, with Bowyer finishing 18th and Keselowski 19th.