Kyle Busch Continues Phenomenal Roll at Brickyard

Kyle Busch takes the checkered flag in the Lilly Diabetes 250
Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images

About the only thing Kyle Busch didn't win on Saturday was the one prize he wasn't eligible for.

But the driver of the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota won everything else, capping a phenomenal day at Indianapolis Motor Speedway with a victory in the Lilly Diabetes 250 NASCAR XFINITY Series race—and he did so with tires that were 23 laps older than those of his pursuers.

Busch led 62 of 63 laps but had to hold off Kevin Harvick on a two lap dash in overtime to win for the third time at the Brickyard, the seventh time in 11 starts this season and the 83rd time in his career, extending his series record.

The XFINITY race was actually the fourth competition Busch won on Saturday. First, he won the top starting spot for the Lilly Diabetes 250, the 54th pole of his career. Next, he won the pole position for Sunday's Crown Royal 400 (3 p.m. ET on NBCSN), one of the marquee NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events of the season.

After that Busch led all 20 laps and took the checkered flag in the first heat race under the XFINITY Series' final Dash 4 Cash event of the season.

Kyle Busch leads the field in the first Dash 4 Cash heat race
Robert Laberge/Getty Images

Busch didn't win the $100,000 Dash 4 Cash bonus, a prize available only to series regulars. That check went to Justin Allgaier, who rolled home in fifth place, the highest finisher among the four drivers who earned eligibility in the heat races.

Busch, however, has one more mountain to climb. On Sunday, he'll attempt to complete his second straight weekend sweep at the vaunted Brickyard.

Busch held off Harvick, third-place finisher Paul Menard and fourth-place Kyle Larson even though Busch had stayed out on old rubber while those behind him pitted for new tires under the first caution on Lap 50.

"The new tires for those guys were good for them but not so good for us," Busch said. "I just dug in deep and gave it everything I had. I knew I had to get really good restarts. On the second-to-last one (on Lap 54), I got a really good one, and then the last one (on lap 62 in overtime), it was OK.

[adinserter name="GOOGLE AD"] "I got an OK one, and I saw Harvick pull out… but he never got alongside of me. I never felt him close enough that he was going to pull alongside. … It's a pretty awesome feeling to be able to go back to Victory Lane here this year. We're sitting on the pole tomorrow, and hopefully we can have another sweep here."

Busch had a lead of more than eight seconds on Lap 48 of a scheduled 60 when JGR teammate Erik Jones, the wire-to-wire winner of the second heat race, blew a right rear tire entering Turn 1 and spun, causing the afternoon's first caution.

While Busch and series leader Daniel Suarez stayed out on old tires, the remaining eight lead-lap cars came to pit road. Busch survived the restart on lap 54, but a lap later, ay Black Jr. and Harrison Rhodes wrecked off Turn 2 to bring put the second yellow and force the overtime.

On the Lap 62 restart, Harvick pushed Larson, then ducked to the inside but was reluctant to take a bad angle into the first corner. As Harvick and Larson battled briefly for second, Busch pulled away and ultimately crossed the finish line .411 seconds ahead of Harvick's No. 88 JR Motorsports Chevrolet.

Kevin Harvick
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

"I really thought I could beat him down the backstretch if I got off of (Turn) 2 well and could clear the 42 (Larson)," Harvick said. "I got to the inside and kind of hit the chip and decided to hold the line up a little bit and try to get a run, and the 42 got stuck on the outside and that ruined my plan.

"But our goal was to overachieve today, and we did that and capitalized on some situations and had a couple of good restarts and wound up second. All in all, it wasn't a bad day."

Just nowhere near as good as the one Busch had.

Race Results

Pos. # Driver Make Start Laps Led Status Points
1 18 Kyle Busch Toyota 1 63 62 Running 0
2 88 Kevin Harvick Chevy 4 63 0 Running 0
3 2 Paul Menard Chevy 8 63 0 Running 0
4 42 Kyle Larson Chevy 3 63 0 Running 0
5 7 Justin Allgaier Chevy 6 63 0 Running 36
6 1 Elliott Sadler Chevy 9 63 0 Running 35
7 19 Daniel Suarez Toyota 7 63 0 Running 34
8 22 Joey Logano Ford 5 63 0 Running 0
9 3 Ty Dillon Chevy 12 63 0 Running 32
10 33 Brandon Jones Chevy 13 63 0 Running 31
11 48 Brennan Poole Chevy 10 63 0 Running 30
12 98 Jeb Burton Ford 11 63 0 Running 29
13 16 Ryan Reed Ford 15 62 0 Running 28
14 6 Darrell Wallace Jr Ford 14 62 0 Running 27
15 11 Blake Koch Chevy 17 62 0 Running 26
16 62 Brendan Gaughan Chevy 16 62 1 Running 26
17 51 Jeremy Clements Chevy 19 62 0 Running 24
18 39 Ryan Sieg Chevy 18 62 0 Running 23
19 44 J.J. Yeley Toyota 21 62 0 Running 22
20 28 Dakoda Armstrong Toyota 20 62 0 Running 21
21 4 Ross Chastain Chevy 22 62 0 Running 20
22 20 Erik Jones Toyota 2 62 0 Running 19
23 0 Garrett Smithley Chevy 25 61 0 Running 18
24 93 David Starr Chevy 30 61 0 Running 17
25 01 Ryan Preece Chevy 27 61 0 Running 16
26 78 B J McLeod Ford 28 61 0 Running 15
27 46 Brandon Gdovic Chevy 26 60 0 Running 14
28 52 Joey Gase Chevy 38 60 0 Running 13
29 90 Mario Gosselin Chevy 32 60 0 Running 12
30 97 Ryan Ellis Chevy 34 60 0 Running 11
31 25 Stanton Barrett Chevy 31 59 0 Running 10
32 70 Derrike Cope Chevy 36 58 0 Running 9
33 07 Ray Black Jr Chevy 24 52 0 Accident 8
34 13 Harrison Rhodes Toyota 29 51 0 Accident 7
35 74 Mike Harmon Dodge 33 32 0 Too Slow 6
36 14 Jeff Green Toyota 23 31 0 Rear Gear 5
37 89 Morgan Shepherd Chevy 35 17 0 Handling 4
38 10 Matt DiBenedetto Toyota 39 13 0 Brakes 0
39 40 Timmy Hill Dodge 37 9 0 Vibration 0
40 15 Todd Peck Ford 40 0 0 Engine 1

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