Young Austin Dillon brought home the win Friday Night at Kentucky Speedway after dominating the race and leading 192 out of 200 laps. After winning the Camping World Truck Series Championship last year, Dillon moved up to the Nationwide Series for this year and this is his first win. Dillon has been consistent all season long but now his hard work has paid off with a win.
The race was pretty calm overall. The first caution of the night came out on lap 25 when the No.24 of Jamie Mosley spun coming off turn four. A record-breaking green-flag run now started. On lap 82, the first cycle of green-flag pit stops began. Austin Dillon cycled through as the leader. On lap 107, Dillon lead followed by Kevin Harvick, Kurt Busch, Sam Hornish Jr and Michael Annett.
On lap 135, Hamlin had been struggling all night and now he got loose from an engine problem and almost spun out but he saved it and took the car behind the wall to end his night. Hamlin ended up finishing 33rd. On lap 138 the second round of green-flag pit stops began. In the middle of the cycle of pit stops, Mike Wallace made contact with Kurt Busch and Wallace was sent up the track and he pounded the wall. The caution came out for the first time since the caution on lap 25.
Coming to the restart, Dillon was the leader. After the green-flag dropped for the restart, Kurt Busch went three wide into turn one. Busch was on the bottom with Annett in the middle and Dillon on the outside, Dillon pulled away as the leader and Busch battled Allgaier for second. With 20 laps to go, Brian Scott brought his Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) Toyota behind the wall with an engine problem. That was the end to Scott’s night and that was the second engine issues for JGR that night. With five to go, Busch was telling his crew that he had lost a cylinder but he would continue on in the race.
Dillon dominated this race, when he crossed the line to take the checker; he had a nine second lead over second place Busch. Dillon also led 192 laps. Dillon’s first Nationwide win sure came in dominating fashion. Dillon was stoked in victory lane; he said that the domination was “awesome.” This was the first time a black No.3 car has pulled into victory lane since the late Dale Earnhardt had done so over ten years ago. Dillon said that it is “awesome for all these fans” to get the No.3 back in victory lane. Dillon’s grandfather and team owner Richard Childress said that it’s very cool to win but “especially your grandson, that’s really cool.”
Kurt Busch ended up in second even though he had car issues late in the race. Michael Annett got his first top five finish of the season, he finished fourth. Kenny Wallace made a great return to the track and he finished 11th followed by Danica who had a great run on such a tough track. Ryan Blaney was racing on the biggest track he’s ever raced on and he ended up finishing 15th. Dillon also took over the points lead from Elliot Sadler. Dillon is setting himself up perfectly for a shot at the championship later this season.
Next week the Nationwide Series heads to Daytona for one of the best races of the season. Sparks will fly under the Fourth of July fireworks next Friday night in Daytona.
UPDATE- Austin Dillon fails post-race inspection, penalty to be handed out Tuesday. We’ll post an article on the penalty once it becomes available.
Results via Nascar.com
|1||1||3||Austin Dillon *||Chevrolet||Bass Pro Shops||48/2||200||Running|
|2||8||54||Kurt Busch||Toyota||Monster Energy||0||200||Running|
|3||2||33||Kevin Harvick||Chevrolet||Hunt Brothers Pizza||0||200||Running|
|4||9||43||Michael Annett||Ford||Pilot Flying J||41/1||200||Running|
|6||4||12||Sam Hornish Jr.||Dodge||Wurth||38/0||200||Running|
|7||3||22||Brad Keselowski||Dodge||Discount Tire||0||200||Running|
|8||5||6||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||Ford||Sam’s Club / Cargill||37/1||200||Running|
|9||12||2||Elliott Sadler||Chevrolet||OneMain Financial||35/0||200||Running|
|10||13||30||James Buescher||Chevrolet||Fresh from Florida Gulf Seafood||0||200||Running|
|11||26||199||Kenny Wallace||Toyota||American Ethanol / Family Farmers||33/0||198||Running|
|13||25||198||Reed Sorenson||Ford||Shelby Engine Co.||31/0||198||Running|
|14||10||88||Cole Whitt *||Chevrolet||Degree Men||30/0||198||Running|
|16||20||38||Brad Sweet *||Chevrolet||Great Clips||28/0||198||Running|
|17||17||44||Mike Bliss||Toyota||Mark Smith Racing||27/0||197||Running|
|18||24||87||Joe Nemechek||Toyota||AM / FM Energy Wood & Pellet Stoves||26/0||197||Running|
|19||42||70||Johanna Long *||Chevrolet||Keen Parts, Inc.||25/0||196||Running|
|21||21||51||Jeremy Clements||Chevrolet||Clements Automotive||23/0||196||Running|
|22||19||81||Jason Bowles *||Toyota||American Majority||22/0||195||Running|
|23||33||19||Tayler Malsam||Toyota||G-Oil / Ryobi||21/0||195||Running|
|24||16||23||Jamie Dick||Chevrolet||Viva Auto Group||20/0||195||Running|
|26||40||14||Eric McClure||Toyota||Hefty / Reynolds Wrap||18/0||193||Running|
|27||37||50||T.J. Bell||Chevrolet||Beaver Bail Bonds||17/0||192||Running|
|28||23||117||Tanner Berryhill||Toyota||New Gulf Resources / Excel Therapy Specialists||16/0||192||Running|
|30||15||11||Brian Scott||Toyota||Dollar General||14/0||176||In Pit|
|31||34||01||Mike Wallace||Chevrolet||G&K Services||13/0||143||In Pit|
|32||30||41||Timmy Hill||Ford||Poynt.com||0||141||In Pit|
|33||6||18||Denny Hamlin||Toyota||Dollar General||0||132||Out of Race|
|34||27||4||Danny Efland||Chevrolet||Tradebank||10/0||103||In Pit|
|35||36||89||Morgan Shepherd||Chevrolet||A+ Building Services||9/0||48||In Pit|
|36||39||52||Kevin Lepage||Chevrolet||Metro Ministries||8/0||32||In Pit|
|37||29||174||Scott Riggs||Chevrolet||Koma Unwind Chillaxation Drink||0||11||In Pit|
|38||32||108||Tim Andrews||Ford||Randy Hill Racing||6/0||10||In Pit|
|39||31||46||Chase Miller||Chevrolet||TheMotorsportsGroup.com||5/0||6||In Pit|
|40||38||42||Josh Wise||Chevrolet||Curtis Key Plumbing||0||5||In Pit|
|41||43||15||Blake Koch||Chevrolet||Rick Ware Racing||3/0||5||Out of Race|
|42||28||10||Jeff Green||Toyota||TriStar Motorsports||2/0||4||In Pit|
|43||22||47||Scott Speed||Chevrolet||Curtis Key Plumbing||0||2||Out of Race|