DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Kyle Busch timed his run for the lead perfectly, coming off Turn 4 at Daytona International Speedway to squeeze by and pass Timothy Peters in the final seconds of Friday’s NASCAR Camping World Trucks Series season-opening NextEra Energy Resources 250.
In his first career win in a Truck at Daytona, Busch beat Peters to the checkered flag by .016 of a second in the closest finish in a Trucks race at DIS and the eighth-closest finish in overall Trucks Series history.
“It sounds awesome but I’d love to be a Daytona 500 winner,” Busch said when asked how he felt to finally break through with a Trucks win at DIS.
The younger Busch brother will get that opportunity in the Great American Race on Sunday, going for his first win in the Sprint Cup season opener, although he’ll be starting from 37th position in the 43-car field.
“This now makes it where I’ve won four (races) here, one in ARCA, Nationwide, Cup and now Trucks,” Busch said of being the first driver in NASCAR history to earn wins in all four series at Daytona. “I’ve been trying to get that fourth one and finally got it.”
Peters tried to block, forcing Busch up the track to almost the outside retaining wall, but Busch never lifted and at the last second somehow found just enough extra horsepower to get past Peters. Busch called it was probably the biggest history in Kyle Busch Motorsports history.
“We’ve started the trifecta,” said Busch, who goes for a win in Saturday’s Nationwide Series opener as well as Sunday’s Daytona 500.
It was Busch’s 36th win in the Trucks series, and crew chief Eric Phillips’ 28th in the NCWTS, tying him with Rick Wren for most wins by a crew chief in trucks annals.
Johnny Sauter finished third, followed by Ryan Truex and Ron Hornaday Jr.
Sixth through 10th were Ryan Blaney, Jeb Burton, Joe Nemechek, Jimmy Weller III and German Quiroga.
As close and exciting as the finish was, it also was a race marked by a spectacular 15-truck crash in Turn 2 with 25 laps remaining in the 100-lap event (see video above).
It appeared from TV replays that Sean Corr got into the rear of Parker Kligerman, who was pushed into Mason Mingus, triggering the huge wreck.
The push from Kligerman turned Mingus hard to the right and plowed head-on into the outside SAFER barrier, spun and then hit the wall again with the back of his truck.
None of the drivers involved were injured, but nearly half the field was sidelined due to damage as a result.
The 15 drivers involved included Mingus, Kligerman, Corr, Ryan Sieg, Darrell Wallace Jr., John King, Brian Ickler, John Wes Townley, Brennan Newberry, Tyler Young, Chris Fontaine, Tyler Reddick, Ben Kennedy, Joey Coulter and Chris Cockrum.
For as much wreckage as there was scattered across the race track, the race was never red-flagged, with the overall yellow caution period lasting just six laps until all wrecked trucks and debris were removed by safety crews.
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