BUSCH: Milwaukee race report

WEST ALLIS, Wis. - Home state favorite Ted Musgrave overpowered a previously dominant Jack Sprague with 30 laps remaining in Saturday's GNC Live Well 200 race to become the seventh consecutive different NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series winner at The...

WEST ALLIS, Wis. - Home state favorite Ted Musgrave overpowered a previously dominant Jack Sprague with 30 laps remaining in Saturday's GNC Live Well 200 race to become the seventh consecutive different NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series winner at The Milwaukee Mile.

Musgrave, who pulled away to beat Sprague by 2.304 seconds won for the fourth time in 11 races and moved to fourth place in series standings.

He won $42,310, his Mopar Performance Dodge Ram truck averaging 92.951 mph for the 200 lap, 200-mile distance.

"If you're going to win one and it's not Daytona or Indy, this is a good one to win," said an elated Musgrave, an Illinois native who raced out of the Milwaukee suburb of Franklin before moving south to join the NASCAR Winston Cup Series in the 1990s.

"I've always wanted to win here, but this is my first trip to victory lane here. Man, this is just awesome."

Finishing behind Sprague, who led 167 laps in his NetZero Platinum Chevrolet after starting from the pole position, was Raybestos Rookie contender Travis Kvapil in the CAT Rental Store Chevy. Terry Cook finished fourth in the K Automotive Ford F-150 with Kurt Busch, the race's defending winner, fifth in Roush Racing's Eldon Ford.

Joe Ruttman, who started alongside Sprague on the front row, was sixth in the DANA Corporation Dodge. That finish, coupled with a 24th-place run by Scott Riggs, vaulted Ruttman into the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series championship lead by a 1,732 to 1,726 point margin. Riggs, who spent 26 laps behind pit wall while his crew repaired a broken wheel hub assembly on the Team ASE Racing Dodge's right front, entered the event with a lead of 53.

Billy Bigley, Ken Schrader, Matt Crafton and Ricky Hendrick rounded out the top 10 finishers, all of whom completed 200 laps. Twenty-three teams, from a starting field of 35, were running at the finish of the two hour nine minute six second race.

Three drivers - Sprague, Musgrave and Chris Horn - swapped the lead three times. There were seven caution periods consuming 28 laps, none of them for a major incident, although a lap 90 spin triggered by Turn 2 contact between Ruttman and Coy Gibbs cost the latter driver a top-10 finish.

Sprague, out of the lead only during the race's third caution when all but Iowan Horn, sporting new sponsor NASCAR Kids Multi Vitamins on his Silverado, elected to pit for fuel and tires, led by margins of three seconds or more until after the next-to-final yellow triggered by Tom Carey's stalled truck at the head of pit road.

Musgrave, who'd chased Sprague all afternoon to no avail, was right on the leader's tailgate when competition resumed. He nearly got by Sprague on lap 170 then executed the winning pass off Turn 2 one circuit later.

"I had to do it there," said Musgrave. "(Sprague) was so strong, so any little slip he made, I had to capitalize on it."

A dejected Sprague blamed a handling problem, after a change of right side tires, for the race that got away.

"It's pretty cut and dried, the (truck) was awesome," the two-time series champion and 1997 Milwaukee Mile winner said. "On that last set of tires, I was bad loose and don't know why. He got me there but I went right back by him. (Then) I just got real bad loose."

The last green flag segment also was beneficial for Kvapil, who entered the pits sixth on lap 165 and came out in third-place. He fought off the closing charge of Cook, who'd run in third-place behind Sprague and Musgrave virtually the entire event.

The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season reaches its halfway point on Saturday with the running of the O'Reilly Auto Parts 250 at the new Kansas Speedway.

The results:

Bud Pole Award - Jack Sprague, Chevrolet,

GNC Live Well 200 (200 laps) - 1. (3)Ted Musgrave, Dodge, 200, 92.951 mph, $42,310; 2. (1)Jack Sprague, Chevrolet, 200, $29,675; 3. (7)Travis Kvapil, Chevrolet, 200, $23,915; 4. (5)Terry Cook, Ford, 200, $15,825; 5. (4)Kurt Busch, Ford, 200, $13,550; 6. (2)Joe Ruttman, Dodge, 200, $11,900; 7. (15)Billy Bigley, Chevrolet, 200, $10,800; 8. (18)Ken Schrader, Chevrolet, 200, $9,350; 9. (12)Matt Crafton, Chevrolet, 200, $10,125; 10. (6)Ricky Hendrick, Chevrolet, 200, $10,925; 11. (16)Dennis Setzer, Chevrolet, 199, $9,775; 12. (14)Jon Wood, Ford, 199, $9,340; 13. (10)Coy Gibbs, Chevrolet, 199, $8,740; 14. (19)Jim Inglebright, Chevrolet, 198, $7,640; 15. (24)Brad Mueller, Ford, 198, $8,090; 16. (29)Chris Horn, Chevrolet, 198, $7,440; 17. (8)Lance Norick, Chevrolet, 197, out of gas, $8,390; 18. (23)Willy T. Ribbs, Dodge, 197, $8,290; 19. (26)Larry Gunselman, Ford, 196, $8,240; 20. (30)Jonathon Price, Chevrolet, 196, $8,615; 21. (25)Tom Carey, Chevrolet, 195, $7,140; 22. (11)Carlos Contreras, Dodge, 192, $8,090; 23. (31)Tom Powers, Dodge, 181, vibration, $7,040; 24. (9)Scott Riggs, Dodge, 174, $7,990; 25. (13)Rick Crawford, Ford, 172, engine, $8,365; 26. (20)Jimmy Hensley, Chevrolet, 161, rear end, $7,940; 27. (17)Bobby Dotter, Chevrolet, 136, engine, $7,915; 28. (27)Brian Rose, Chevrolet, 131, $6,890; 29. (28)Eric Jones, Chevrolet, 124, engine, $6,865; 30. (21)Randy Tolsma, Chevrolet, 104, engine, $6,840; 31. (32)Phil Bonifield, Chevrolet, 32, engine, $6,815; 32. (35)Gene Christensen, Chevrolet, 10, transmission, $6,790; 33. (33)Bobby Hamilton Jr, Dodge, 10, transmission, $6,765; 34. (34)Mike Harmon, Dodge, 5, engine, $6,740; 35. (22)Lance Hooper, Chevrolet, 3, ignition, $6,740

NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series: 1. Joe Ruttman 1,732; 2. Scott Riggs 1,726; 3. Jack Sprague 1,673; 4. Ted Musgrave 1,600; 5. Ricky Hendrick 1,586; 6. Travis Kvapil 1,585; 7. Terry Cook 1,548; 8. Rick Crawford 1,443; 9. Dennis Setzer 1,374; 10. Matt Crafton 1,363

-Owen Kearns

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Ken Schrader , Kurt Busch , Ted Musgrave , Ricky Hendrick , Jack Sprague , Dennis Setzer , Bobby Dotter , Coy Gibbs , Larry Gunselman , Lance Norick , Carlos Contreras , Terry Cook , Rick Crawford , Scott Riggs , Matt Crafton , Lance Hooper , Joe Ruttman , Billy Bigley , Mike Harmon , Randy Tolsma , Jimmy Hensley , Tom Powers , Chris Horn , Eric Jones , Phil Bonifield , Jim Inglebright , Travis Kvapil