Kentucky: Dillon's proving ground

NASCAR Cup drivers will not be at Kentucky Speedway, which is a benefit for Austin Dillon and Sam Hornish Jr. as the two Nationwide points leaders go head-to-head

Saturday’s NASCAR Nationwide Series Kentucky 300 (7:30 p.m. ET, ESPNEWS) at Kentucky Speedway is just what Austin Dillon needs.

Dillon is 17 points behind leader Sam Hornish Jr. in the standings and is in need of a win to rein Hornish in or overtake him and the lead. Kentucky is the best place for that to happen having scored his only two career victories in the series at the 1.5-mile speedway when he swept both races in 2012, both of which he won from the pole.

“This battle has been really tight this year and it’s really anyone’s championship to win,” Dillon said. “I’ve really enjoyed battling with Sam Hornish Jr. all year, along with the other competitors. I’ve had some success at Kentucky Speedway in the past, so I hope I can capitalize this weekend and gain some points.”

With no NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers entered in the race, there hasn’t been a better time all season for Dillon to strike.

In addition to his two wins last season, he has one other start – this June – where he finished sixth. In Loop Data categories, he’s leads all other NASCAR Nationwide drivers at Kentucky in average finish (2.7), average running position (2.9), percentage of laps led (48.2%) and driver rating (133.4). In the June 2012 race, he scored a perfect rating of 150.0.

Regardless of whether Dillon finds his way to Victory Lane or not this weekend, it would surprise no one to see him have a strong showing … and perhaps whittle away at Hornish’s lead.

Staff Report - NASCAR Wire Service

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Drivers Austin Dillon , Sam Hornish Jr.
Article type Preview
Tags dillon, hornish, kentucky, nascar nationwide, nns, sparta