Kyle Busch earned his second win of the season and the 14th of his career in Sunday afternoon's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) race at Bristol Motor Speedway. Busch led five times for 378 laps en route to his second win in the last three ...
Kyle Busch earned his second win of the season and the 14th of his career in Sunday afternoon's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) race at Bristol Motor Speedway.
Busch led five times for 378 laps en route to his second win in the last three races.
Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Denny Hamlin finished second and Toyota driver Marcos Ambrose earned his first top-10 finish of 2009 with a 10th-place result.
The win marks Toyota's second NSCS victory of 2009 and 12th win since joining NSCS competition in 2007.
Other Toyota drivers in the field included David Reutimann (12th), Robby Gordon (21st), Scott Speed (28th), Brian Vickers (29th), Michael Waltrip (32nd), Joey Logano (38th), Joe Nemechek (41st), Todd Bodine (42nd) and Dave Blaney (43rd).
Four Camry drivers are in the top-20 in the unofficial NSCS point standings following today's race in Bristol -- Busch (fourth), Hamlin (eighth), Reutimann (11th) and Vickers (14th).
KYLE BUSCH, No. 18
Snickers Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 1st
How excited are you to get this win? "It's pretty awesome. We should've won here last fall and we should've won here yesterday. We've had so many great Nationwide cars here, too, we just keep messing up on pit road (yesterday). I just want to thank Snickers, M&M's, Sprint, Interstate Batteries, Toyota, NOS Energy Drink, Marquis Jets and of course thank the fans -- they're great for being here too. It's just an overall great day. The car handled well. We made some adjustments to it. Steve (Addington, crew chief) was good on pit road. The guys were great on pit road today."
Did you have a dominating car today? "This thing really came to life today. Our car was fast. We knew we were in practice but we just weren't sure exactly how fast. This really means a lot for Steve Addington (crew chief) and all these guys to get Snickers in victory lane this year. It's pretty awesome to be in victory lane here in Bristol. I've got to thank all of the fans, thank Snickers, M&M's, Interstate Batteries, Toyota."
What does it mean for you to earn your second career Cup win at Bristol? "It was a good day for us. The Snickers Toyota was really fast. We knew it was fast. We knew it was going to be a good race car coming here from our performance last fall. We fine-tuned on it a little bit here and there. We need to work on the qualifying package a little bit. Ultimately, it doesn't really matter where you start here. You have to bide your time, take it easy when you have a car that's good. It was a very satisfying day today. We had a great run there. We really enjoyed it. So hopefully all the Mars family is happy today. Bringing home the Snickers brand to victory lane was cool."
Did you worry that anything could happen in the closing laps of the race? "There definitely is especially when we were gaining on all those lap cars with like 30 to go. You never know if a lap car's gonna turn another lap car and spin in front of you and you're going to T-bone the guy or whatever. You never know what's gonna happen. That's what so tricky about this race track. That's what makes it so fun when you do win here, you know all the things that can happen. We had a good racecar today. When we got behind on pit road there, we drove back up through, like Steve (Addington, crew chief) said, we passed Denny (Hamlin) after a few laps, then we passed Jimmie (Johnson) when he got in traffic a little bit. Traffic was just real tough. Everyone runs equal side by side, it's so hard to get by guys."
***DENNY HAMLIN, No. 11
FedEx Express Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 2nd
Was your car better in the longer runs than the shorter runs? "Yeah, we had a long-run car. We didn't have that short run car. There were about 200,000 FedEx employees that were hoping that we were going to get a win today, I'm just trying to get a win for them but we came up a little bit short. Congratulations to Kyle (Busch). It's great to get a one-two finish for Joe Gibbs Racing and just can't thank this whole team enough. A good job on pit road today, very solid. We just had a solid car all day. We had a third place car on short runs and we had a winning car on long runs just never got it."
Are you happy with your second-place finish today? "It's somewhat of a redemption, but we feel like we deserve to be in victory lane and hopefully we'll get that done next week."
What were you thinking with Kyle Busch in front of you on the final restart? "If I could've got to him (Kyle Busch) I definitely would have. I just couldn't get to him right there. He made one slip up in (turns) three and four and it allowed us to get to him but we just were sliding everywhere. Whenever you cycle these tires they're extremely hard to hang onto so I was just busy trying to defend myself from Jimmie (Johnson)."
Were you thinking about how you were going to race your teammate? "I would've raced him hard. I definitely would. I treat him as if he wasn't a teammate actually. I wouldn't try to hit him hard enough to send him up to the wall, but I'd definitely try to get him out of the groove. They've had their fair share of wins and it was time for us, but not today."
No. 47 Little Debbie Toyota Camry, JTG-Daugherty Racing
Finishing Position: 10th
Are you happy with your top-10 finish? "We ran great all day. Frank Kerr my crew chief has saved my career. He's just getting me back on track and giving me good cars and good equipment. We've got a great little group around us this year with the merging with Michael Waltrip Racing. I've got to thank all of those guys too. They've given us everything they've got and I feel like that is important that both players are equal. I'm just so thankful to everyone to give me the chance to really get in the Cup Series. We're doing it and we're right in the middle of it. We lost the number two and number four cylinders today so we were running on six at the end, but somehow we brought it home."
Where did you come from today? "We've just been working away at it. We've been sneaking up there getting more confident. We've had good runs every single race this year. We've just had problems. Problems during the race -- might have blown up at Atlanta and then we had some other issues with our deal at Vegas and here we are. We're finally hitting our form and showing everybody what we got. I just can't wait to start hitting these tracks the second time. This is my very first COT race at a short track -- first time at Bristol in a COT and I'm just really excited with the result today and hopefully it leads to better things."
How exciting is it for you to perform well at your first short track in the Cup Series? "It's just great. I'm really keen to trying to break that mentality thing of a road racing guy. I know I'm good on road courses, but I want to be good at every single track we go to and today was a big step to really validate why I'm here on a full-time Cup ride. Just really excited for my guys. I'm just so proud of them for giving me a great car today and for just working so hard. We're going to celebrate tonight because it feels like a win to us considering the adversity that we had today. But we've got next week to worry about on Monday and we've got to really focus on that and hopefully our season will get stronger and stronger and show everybody why we're here and that we mean business."
How did it feel to be up there racing with the top drivers all afternoon? "It just feels great to be up there racing with those guys, passing Jeff Gordon. I mean, he's just a hero of mine. I've just watched him forever and just admired him so much. And, yeah, we're in the middle of it. I'm getting a few bumps here and there and I'm bumping a few guys. It's just a lot of fun. I'm learning the craft and hopefully these kinds of runs will help me cement my reputation in the series with my fellow drivers to know that I can do it when I'm on form."
DAVID REUTIMANN, No. 00 Aaron's Dream Machine Toyota Camry, Michael
Finishing Position: 12th
ROBBY GORDON, No. 7 Toyota
Camry, Robby Gordon Motorsports
Finishing Position: 21st
MICHAEL WALTRIP, No. 55 NAPA AUTO PARTS
Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Finishing Position: 32nd
LOGANO, No. 20 Home Depot Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 38th
What happened with your car to take you out of the race? "We blew up. It looked like about five laps before that we dropped a cylinder. It started making noise so I was hoping it would finish but it let go. It's a bummer. We were in position to have a decent finish -- what we needed to do to stay in the top-35. It's just a bummer."
Are you frustrated that you will fall out of the top-35? "I can't even describe it. It's very frustrating after running the whole race and then getting that close to the end. What am I supposed to do? You can't really do much about that. We'll just go back and see what happened and fix it for next week."
***JOE NEMECHEK, No. 87 Toyota
Camry, NEMCO Motorsports
Finishing Position: 41st
TODD BODINE, No. 64
Fred's Hometown Discount Store Toyota Camry, Gunselman Motorsports
Finishing Position: 42nd
DAVE BLANEY, No. 66 Hyde Park Storage Suites
Toyota Camry, Prism Racing
Finishing Position: 43rd
-credit: toyota motorsports