- Kyle Busch earned his fourth win of the season in Saturday afternoon’s NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) race at Delaware’s Dover International Speedway.
- Busch started from the pole and led 191 (of 205) laps at the one-mile oval.
- Toyota drivers led all but three laps in Saturday’s 205-mile race. Hamlin also led 11 laps.
- It marks the fifth win of the season for Toyota and 42nd victory for a Camry driver since joining the series in 2007.
- Reed Sorenson (fourth), Jason Leffler (fifth) and Brian Scott (ninth) also earned top-10 finishes for Toyota.
- Camry drivers Denny Hamlin (12th), Brendan Gaughan (13th), Steve Wallace (14th), Michael Annett (15th), Kasey Kahne (27th) and Trevor Bayne (29th) were also in the field.
- Busch is currently second in the unofficial NNS point standings — 11 points behind leader Brad Keselowski. Joey Logano (eighth), Leffler (ninth), Scott (10th), Gaughan (11th), Bayne (14th), Annett (15th) and Sorenson (20th) are also in the top-20 after 11 of 35 races.
KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 Combos Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 1st
How does it feel to be in victory lane at Dover?
“It feels good. We’ve been passed here a lot at Dover. We’ve had great race cars. Can’t thank these guys enough — this Joe Gibbs Racing team was awesome. Today was a good day for us. Real good race car. I’m real proud of these guys. The way we were good all day. We came off pit road real strong and everything — held our own.”
Did the late race restart disrupt your momentum, and what do you during those situations?
”Not much. You just try to think through things that are going to happen on the restart. I was planning on Denny (Hamlin) being on my inside for the restart. Figuring, well I need to go to the outside to make sure I get a big run through (turns) one and two on the outside and try to clear him down the back. That didn’t happen. I had the 32 (Reed Sorenson) and I got him done getting to turn one. You just think through all the different scenarios that can happen and try to plan out the best you can. It never always goes to plan, but you can try.”
What was going through your mind during the late race restart?
“We hadn’t had stumbling problems all day, so I figured we can have just a good, clean restart — don’t spin the tires, get through the gears okay and you’ll be fine. That’s what we did. That’s what won us the race. We just had a very fast race car. This Combos Toyota was awesome. We had a great car and all we did was just make sure we adjusted on it right and kept it out front and kept it in clean air.”
How dominant of a race car did you have today?
“I had a great race car rolling off the truck. Jason (Ratcliff, crew chief) and all of the guys back at the shop at Joe Gibbs Racing did a great job in preparing a cool piece. We come out here and just fine-tuned on it a little bit yesterday, and had a great qualifying effort this morning with a new track record, and we had a fast race car today. Denny (Hamlin) got the jump on me on the initial start and got up there a little bit and led a few laps. I was a little too loose to get going. I chased him back down and got by him and set sail from there. Our guys on pit road were unbeatable. They had great race stops and we just made some fine adjustments on pit road one time there during the race, and it seemed to work out for us. The car just took off like a flash on them restarts, so it was really cool to ride a car like that.”
What are your chances to sweep the Nationwide and Sprint Cup races this weekend?
“Well, so far so good. Should’ve won last night (in the NCWTS race Friday), but unfortunately had some issues there. I had a great race truck, so those guys did a nice job and then today Jason (Ratcliff, crew chief) and these guys gave me a fast piece where we were able to run that well and win the race. So, we’re hoping tomorrow’s M&M’s Camry is just as strong and that we can work towards going for that sweep. I feel pretty good about it. I know there’s a lot of guys in the garage area that are saying we’re really good, but you’re only as good as you race. You’ve still got to run the race. So they don’t pay right now.”
What would you like to do in the Nationwide Series this year?
“I’d like to run the full year. But, it’s up to J.D. Gibbs and those guys. I’m just here to drive race cars. I do what I love to do. I’m not the guys that handles the business week-in and week-out. I got enough of that going on at Kyle Busch Motorsports.”
Does it change your approach now that you are not running a full-time Nationwide Series schedule this year?
“It changes your approach a little bit, but not a whole lot. We’ve just got to make sure that we go out there and try to win races. That’s what we’re here to do anyway. Last year, even though we were going for the championship, we were still racing for wins. I felt like this year just having the tone kind of change this year a little bit doesn’t change a whole lot for us. We still want to win as many as we can — we’re going after the owner’s championship. So, if we could secure that it would be better for us too. It’s frustrating to want to go for it and not be allowed but it’s better for what we’re doing on Sundays. I feel like that’s the big prize. We’ve got to make sure that we run well there and we can win a championship on the Sprint Cup level and maybe once we get that done then we’ll run for both championships again. But at least getting the first one would be the best.”
JASON RATCLIFF, crew chief, No. 18 Combos Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
How was the race?
“It was fun. I told Kyle (Busch) earlier that he makes it fun just to sit back in that seat up there and enjoy the weather. Like he said, we had a great car all weekend. Similar to what we ran here last fall. The track kind of got away from us last fall and I knew today that would probably be the key — just stay on top of it with our adjustments. We did and it was a dominant car and we were able to stay up front. Had great pit stops and the guys just do an awesome job here. This is just one of those tracks for us that just seems to work with our package and our setup so hopefully we can win a lot more here.”
REED SORENSON, No. 32 Dollar General Toyota Camry, Braun Racing
Finishing Position: 3rd
Did you think you were going to have a fourth-place finish today before the red flag?
“We were running fifth the last 80 laps, so yeah, I thought we’d get pretty close to this. We just had a long day. We were really, really loose the whole day. The Dollar General team fought hard and we made adjustments to make it better. We just started off way too loose. We’ll learn from it and next time we come here we should be better.”
JASON LEFFLER, No. 10 ABF Freight Toyota Camry, Braun Racing
Finishing Position: 5th
How was your race today?
“It was long. We had a tenth-place car and the guys just did a good job and it worked out for us at the end. It’s nice to have something go our way. It’s been a rough year. To come home with another top-five, I’m pretty pumped. The ABF No. 10 Camry has been good to us. We’ve got one more race in Charlotte and then we’re back to the 38. I’m really happy and I’m happy the way the last few weeks have gone.”
Are you any closer to a decision on your crew chief?
“We’re still discussing it and seeing what the options are out there. Luckily for me, my team is strong enough — the group of guys — to keep it going and get it going to the track every week. Trip (Bruce, crew chief) comes in and does practice, calls the race and right now we’re just not in a real hurry to rush into anything.”
Did you think you would end up with a fifth-place finish with everything that happened at the end of the race?
“Actually, I knew my car was pretty good but with 10 to go, no I didn’t think I was going to end up fifth. I thought I was going to end up 10th. It would’ve been hard to get around (Paul) Menard for 10th there. Everything worked out for us and it’s nice to have something come our way for once. Usually we’re on the other end of that. Guys at Braun Racing did a great job. The ABF Camry was really good and we just lost some track position on that last pit stop just because guys took two tires. I had great pit stops all day and I’m glad to come home fifth.”
BRIAN SCOTT, No. 11 Braun Racing Toyota Camry, Braun Racing
Finishing Position: 9th
DENNY HAMLIN, No. 20 Food Lion Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 12th
What happened at the end of the race?
“We had a second or third-place car it seemed like most of the day and it just didn’t quite have anything for Kyle (Busch). We took a couple swings at it and really didn’t get what we wanted out of it. It just didn’t have the speed that those guys did but we tried to make something happen on the restart and got the 21 (Clint Bowyer) and the 38 (Kasey Kahne) there. A lot of times when that happens you kind of expect retaliation.”
BRENDAN GAUGHAN, No. 62 South Point Casino & Hotel Toyota Camry, Rusty Wallace Racing
Finishing Position: 13th
STEVE WALLACE, No. 66 5-hour Energy Toyota Camry, Rusty Wallace Racing
Finishing Position: 14th
MICHAEL ANNETT, No. 15 Germain.com Toyota Camry, Germain Racing
Finishing Position: 15th
KASEY KAHNE, No. 38 Great Clips Toyota Camry, Braun Racing
Finishing Position: 27th
What happened to take you out of the race?
“The 21 (Clint Bowyer) got into me so he obviously got hit by the 20 (Denny Hamlin). Just a rough ending to a pretty decent day. We had to fight back — I sped leaving pit road. I was a little confused on the speed. Carl (Edwards) was beating me down pit road so I stepped it up a little bit leaving and I obviously stepped it up too much. So, I kind of screwed myself there. But, other than that it was a pretty good day for us.”
Have you enjoyed working with Braun Racing in the Nationwide Series?
“They have a good group of guys. Stewart Cooper (crew chief) does a real nice job on the Great Clips car and they have some good sponsors and things and they work hard. It’s a good team. The guys work hard — they try hard. It’s tough to beat a few of these guys and we run with them each week. It’s nice and I look forward to Charlotte in a couple of weeks.”
TREVOR BAYNE, No. 99 Diamond-Waltrip Toyota Camry, Diamond-Waltrip Racing
Finishing Position: 29th