LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

BRISTOL, Tenn. — Kyle Busch, continuing to rule the Nationwide Series on his dropdown visits from Sprint Cup, dominated the closing laps to win Saturday's Drive To Stop Diabetes 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway.

The race was a Joe Gibbs Racing affair, with Busch and teammate Matt Kenseth commanding the afternoon.

Busch, who led 120 laps, outran Kyle Larson to the finish by 1.44 seconds to score his second Nationwide win in four races. Completing the top five were Kevin Harvick, Ryan Blaney and Kenseth.

Busch, who won his third consecutive Nationwide race at Bristol, said his car was too loose early in the race but responded to team changes.

"The track really changed from practice," Busch said. "It was entirely different — not even close. We really had to change the car today. They got me freed up where I could roll and make some speed up.

"Kenseth was really fast — lightning-fast much of the day. I was having a hard time catching him, but I was able to bide my time in traffic."

Kenseth led huge chunks of laps, including a 71-lap stretch from lap 139 to 209. He finished the day with 178 (of 300) laps led. The only other race leader was Larson, who was out front for two laps.

"We had a good car really the whole race," Kenseth said. "We kind of got picked in lapped traffic (when Busch passed for the lead on lap 210). I was being as aggressive as I could without wrecking. After that we had four or five restarts, and I was on the bottom for every one.

"I would lose two or three spots and could never get it back. I had the car to win today, and I couldn't get it done."

Bristol Motor Speedway, a high-banked half-mile that eats race cars, has been one of Busch's favorite tracks. His Saturday win was his 16th in NASCAR premier-series races at BMS (five in Sprint Cup, seven in Nationwide, four in Camping World Truck).

*****

Drive To Stop Diabetes 300 results

1. (2) Kyle Busch, Toyota, 300 laps, 136.7 rating, 0 points.

2. (1) Kyle Larson, Chevrolet, 300, 116.7, 0.

3. (6) Kevin Harvick, Chevrolet, 300, 118.8, 0.

4. (5) Ryan Blaney, Ford, 300, 109.9, 0.

5. (3) Matt Kenseth, Toyota, 300, 141.3, 0.

6. (9) Ty Dillon, Chevrolet, 300, 98.2, 38.

7. (20) Brendan Gaughan, Chevrolet, 300, 97.4, 37.

8. (14) Trevor Bayne, Ford, 300, 89.9, 36.

9. (15) Chase Elliott, Chevrolet, 300, 101.9, 35.

10. (7) Regan Smith, Chevrolet, 300, 101.5, 34.

11. (12) Cale Conley, Chevrolet, 300, 87.1, 0.

12. (26) Landon Cassill, Chevrolet, 300, 81.1, 32.

13. (8) James Buescher, Toyota, 299, 85.5, 31.

14. (4) Brian Scott, Chevrolet, 299, 90.8, 30.

15. (11) Dylan Kwasniewski, Chevrolet, 298, 66.6, 29.

16. (13) Chris Buescher, Ford, 298, 72.7, 28.

17. (18) Elliott Sadler, Toyota, 297, 80.5, 27.

18. (30) Jeremy Clements, Chevrolet, 297, 70.2, 26.

19. (34) Joe Nemechek, Toyota, 297, 67.9, 0.

20. (19) Ryan Sieg, Chevrolet, 296, 62.8, 0.

21. (25) Timmy Hill, Chevrolet, 296, 63.7, 0.

22. (22) Will Kimmel, Toyota, 294, 57, 22.

23. (37) Jamie Dick, Chevrolet, 294, 52.9, 21.

24. (29) Dakoda Armstrong, Ford, 294, 52.7, 20.

25. (28) Mike Wallace, Dodge, 294, 60.7, 19.

26. (10) Mike Bliss, Toyota, 293, 68.9, 18.

27. (35) Eric McClure, Toyota, 290, 38.8, 17.

28. (36) Derrike Cope, Chevrolet, 290, 40.8, 16.

29. (38) Joey Gase, Chevrolet, 285, 36.9, 15.

30. (23) Josh Wise, Chevrolet, 270, 47.1, 0.

31. (21) Ryan Reed, Ford, accident, 258, 66.1, 13.

32. (17) Jeffrey Earnhardt, Chevrolet, 249, 35.3, 12.

33. (39) Ruben Garcia Jr., Toyota, accident, 214, 33.1, 11.

34. (33) Kevin Lepage, Dodge, engine, 152, 40.8, 10.

35. (27) Kelly Admiraal, Toyota, engine, 148, 49.9, 9.

36. (31) Tanner Berryhill, Dodge, engine, 144, 36.4, 8.

37. (40) Matt Carter, Toyota, brakes, 18, 32.5, 0.

38. (32) Carl Long, Dodge, electrical, 11, 32.5, 6.

39. (16) Matt DiBenedetto, Chevrolet, electrical, 6, 30.3, 5.

40. (24) Blake Koch, Toyota, vibration, 5, 28.1, 4.

———

Race Statistics

Average Speed of Race Winner: 87.165 mph.

Time of Race: 1 hour, 50 minutes, 4 seconds.

Margin of Victory: 1.441 seconds.

Caution Flags: 7 for 47 laps.

Lead Changes: 7 among 3 drivers.

Lap Leaders: K.Larson 1-2; K.Busch 3-29; M.Kenseth 30-96; K.Busch 97; M.Kenseth 98-137; K.Busch 138; M.Kenseth 139-209; K.Busch 210-300.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Led, Laps Led): M.Kenseth, 3 times for 178 laps; K.Busch, 4 times for 120 laps; K.Larson, 1 time for 2 laps.

Nationwide Series points: 1. R.Smith, 151; 2. T.Bayne, 150; 3. T.Dillon, 143; 4. C.Elliott, 138; 5. E.Sadler, 135; 6. B.Gaughan, 131; 7. B.Scott, 127; 8. J.Buescher, 117; 9. D.Kwasniewski, 116; 10. L.Cassill, 105.

LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE
Read or Share this story: http://on.wbir.com/1iP67mW