Pit Note: Busch Wins HISTORY 300
Pit Note #11
Saturday, May 25
KYLE BUSCH WINS HISTORY 300 - Charlotte Motor Speedway is Kyle Busch's favorite track, and Saturday he showed everyone why. Busch dominated the HISTORY 300 NASCAR Nationwide Series Race for his seventh career Nationwide win at the speedway, more than any other driver in track history.
Busch also won the North Carolina Education Lottery 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race last weekend, his fifth truck series win in eight starts at Charlotte.
"This is my favorite track, and it's led to a lot of Nationwide and Truck (Series) wins, but we have yet to win a Cup race here," Busch said. "I feel like this weekend is a good weekend for us, and we'll dig in on that tomorrow with 600 miles."
If Busch were to win Sunday's Coca-Cola 600, it would be the first time for any driver to complete the May Camping World Truck Series-Nationwide-Sprint Cup trifecta at Charlotte.
Busch led 186 of 200 laps to earn the win Saturday and pass Mark Martin on the speedway's all-time Nationwide Series win chart. It was also Busch's sixth win in nine Nationwide Series races this season.
"To be tied with the greats in this sport like Mark Martin, it makes it pretty special to be able to beat these guys," Busch said.
Kasey Kahne was the only driver in a position to challenge Busch in the closing laps, but he couldn't manage to get close enough to make a move, finishing second.
"(Busch is) tough to beat in this series," Kahne said. "We got to the point where I think we were as good as the 54 (Busch), especially on long runs. And I just wasn't able to get by him."
Joey Logano finished the day third, while rookie Kyle Larson came home in fourth. Kevin Harvick rounded out the top five.
"It was ok; it wasn't the best," Logano said. "I think we had a third-place car. It was so hard to pass, to get up there and give these guys a shot at it."
HISTORY 300 NATIONWIDE SERIES QUOTES
KYLE BUSCH (Winner, No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota) - "It was really a great race for us. We have had a lot of fast race cars this year. It's a testament to our team, (crew chief) Adam Stevens, and the work the guys put in to do such a great job for me. And being able to give me good race cars to lead a lot of laps and go to Victory Lane. I think it's just a true testament to how good our organization is. We have got to have good race cars from practice, into qualifying and into the race. Having those adjustments all set and ready to go is what makes us look so good. We are able to start the race where the cars are handling so well. We weren't too loose today. That seemed to make our day a little bit smoother. All in all, there at the end I did have to race hard when Kasey (Kahne) got up there. He was catching me a little there, a little bit on the outside. I think he was just beating me on the straightaway, so I moved up to protect my line and do the same thing he was doing, and that seemed to help me. It allowed me to drive away from him. I hadn't been up there all day, so I was kind of worried about being up there. It felt good and was certainly fast. I look forward to tomorrow. I think we've got a pretty good shot at it, but the guy finishing behind me (Kahne) is a little faster than we are. I'm sure we'll be racing him toward the end."
ADAM STEVENS (Crew Chief, No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota) - "This is the same team we had together last year, just a lot of highly qualified, talented and hard-working guys. Like Kyle said, when you have that much confidence in your people, in the job they do, you don't have to look over their shoulder. And it allows me and my engineer and my shock guy to really focus on the details. We kind of get engrossed in that rather than the big-picture stuff. I don't ever question the work the guys do. I think letting the other guys focus on the details is what gives us fast race cars."
J.D. GIBBS (Car Owner, No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota) - "Having Adam (Stevens) and Kyle (Busch) makes things fairly easy. It's different when you run these races week in and week out. I'm just impressed in how they relate and how they work together."
KASEY KAHNE (Second-place finisher, No. 5 Great Clips Chevrolet) - "(Busch is) tough to beat in this series. I thought we had a really good run. We started 11th and slowly moved up. We made good pit calls. We got to the point where I think we were as good as the 54 (Busch), especially on long runs. I felt good about where we were. At the end we had a couple of those restarts, and I would get a little tighter each time we would cycle the tires. If we didn't have those, maybe we would have had a better shot. Still, it was a good run for our Great Clips team. The guys did a good job. I don't know if there is anything we could use for tomorrow. The cars are so much different, the way they go down the straightaway, especially when they go through the corners. It was definitely a good race for us. I didn't get to his (Busch) outside, and from that point on I was on the tight side. He kept getting momentum on the top. If he didn't move up I thought we were close."
JOEY LOGANO (Third-place finisher, No. 22 Discount Tire Ford) - "I think we had a third-place car. It was so hard to pass, to get up there and give these guys a shot at it. We could definitely apply something for tomorrow, but I'm not sure what. The race will be starting later, so it will be a way different race from today. But today I felt like it was a third-place car. We started the race and moved up and had a flat tire and got way back. From there we were just trying to find our way forward. It was tough to pass today. I'm a little confused really too. Last year, we ran up in the high lane up in (turns) 3 and 4, up against the wall. I tried a few times but just couldn't get it going up there. I really don't know why - different tire, something's different that didn't allow us to go up there. The Cup cars haven't been up there either. It's just real odd to me. I thought my guys did a good job on fighting forward after our flat tire. Slowly but surely we got there. We made the most out of our day. We had a third-place car and finished third. We've got to do something about that Kyle Busch guy. He's pretty good."
KYLE LARSON (Fourth-place finisher, No. 32 Vizio/Hulu Chevrolet) - "We started really far back and started moving forward. We were too loose in the short runs there. Trent Owens, my crew chief, worked on it, and it got better. By the third run, I felt like we were really good. We were able to restart on the top and were able to get one or two cars on restarts. We took two tires under that one caution. Maybe we should have taken four tires. I was a little too tight after that but was able to get another restart and got back to fourth. I was hoping for a restart once I got to fourth, because I was really good on the top. I was thinking maybe I could get around Kasey (Kahne) and Kyle (Busch). That's two top-10 finishes in a row for us."