Kyle Busch celebrates 300th start with win at Texas

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Kyle Busch pulled off a double at Texas Motor Speedway: The Nationwide series victory last night was followed up with tonight’s Cup win.

Kyle Busch celebrated his 300th-career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start the best way he knew how at Texas Motor Speedway on Saturday night -- by dominating the NRA 500 from behind the wheel of the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota and taking his 26th-career win. He led 170 of the 334 laps that made up the race en route to the win.

"Dave Rogers (crew chief) and these guys gave me a great race car," Busch said. "We ran up front all race long."

Martin Truex Jr. finished second in the No. 56 Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota It was his sixth second-place finish since he last won at Dover International Speedway in 2007 -- 209 races ago.

"I'm getting tired of finishing second," Truex said. "Man, this is getting old."

Carl Edwards finished third in the No. 99 Roush Fenway Racing Ford. Most of the race was an uphill battle for Edwards that included issues with his engine and his seatbelt.

"Third-place is like a win tonight," Edwards said.

Busch started on the pole, with his brother Kurt Busch in the No. 78 Furniture Row Racing Chevrolet alongside in second. Kurt Busch lost spots early on, but Kyle Busch was a mainstay at or near the front all race long.

Truex first took the lead from Busch on a restart following a caution that came out on lap 36. On lap 76, though Busch was back up front. After a cycle of green-flag pit stops just before lap 130, Busch had a lead of nearly three seconds, but that cushion was erased by a debris caution on lap 149.

Jeff Gordon got his No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet off pit road ahead of Truex to claim the second spot for the restart. He held on to the position to challenge Busch for the lead. It took him several laps, but on lap 189, Gordon finally got by Busch to take the top spot. Gordon lost a couple of positions, though, on pit road when the race field cycled through green-flag stops again around the lap 200 mark of the race.

Truex was, once again, back up front, with Busch in second. A few laps after the cycle concluded, Gordon regained one of the lost spots by taking second from Busch. Busch took the spot back on a restart following the fifth caution of the race that came out with 112 laps to go.

Truex looked to have a comfortable lead when a caution came out for debris with 21 to go. Busch, with the advantage of having the first pit stall on pit road, was able to get off pit road ahead of him to restart first. Edwards restarted third.

"It happened a few times to us last year," Truex said. "The race was over when we lost the lead in the pits."

When the race went back to green, Busch pulled away up front, as Truex pulled away from Edwards. But Edwards could get very far out in front of his Roush Fenway Racing teammate, Greg Biffle in the No. 16 Ford. Although, he wasn't able to pull away from his teammate, Edwards was able to stay in front of Biffle for third. Biffle finished fourth.

Finishing fifth through 10th were Joey Logano in the No. 22 Penske Racing Ford, Jimmie Johnson in the No. 28 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet, Aric Almirola in the No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford, Brian Vickers in a fill-in role for Denny Hamlin in the No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, Brad Keselowski in the No. 2 Penske Racing Ford and Ryan Newman in the No. 39 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet.

Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota

Photo by: Michael C. Johnson

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About this article
Series NASCAR-CUP
Article type Race report
Tags chevrolet, edwards, ford, gibbs, kyle busch, mwr, nascar sprint cup, texas, toyota, truex