Kyle Busch (who else?) wins Truck race from pole at Dover

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This is getting redundant:

Kyle Busch started from the pole, Kyle Busch dominated throughout the race and, who else, Kyle Busch went on to win Friday’s Lucas Oil 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Dover International Speedway.

Busch led 150 of the 200 laps on the one-mile, all-concrete track, averaging just under 150 mph per lap.

It was Busch’s fourth win in as many starts for him in the NCWTS’ first five races of 2014. It was also his 39th career win in a truck (in 119 starts) and his 133rd overall win across all three of NASCAR’s national series.

Busch had some good news for his rivals when he climbed out of his truck in victory lane: It will be a while before he is back on the Truck circuit.

“Hey, my little buddy, it’s Eric Jones’ (who also races for Kyle Busch Motorsports) birthday today, so happy 18th birthday to Eric Jones,” Busch said with a smile. “(Jones will drive Busch’s truck) for five of the next six, I think, so everybody can get rid of Kyle Busch.”

Ryan Blaney made a late rally to finish second, followed by Johnny Sauter, Brandon Jones and Joey Coulter.

Sixth through 10th were John Hunter Nemechek, Ben Kennedy, Tyler Reddick, German Quiroga Jr. and Timothy Peters.

With 44 laps to go, points leader Matt Crafton was running second to Kyle Busch before wrecking hard coming out of Turn 2.

“Something in the right front went down, didn’t give me any warning,” Crafton said. “All of a sudden, boom, it was done. It’s a shame.”

This marks the first time Crafton has not finished a NCWTS in 47 starts.

With the wreck, Crafton dropped out of the points lead. Timothy Peters is now atop the standings, but Crafton is close by, tied with Johnny Sauter for second, just one point behind Peters. Quiroga is in fourth, six points back, while four-time NCWTS champ Ron Hornaday is in fifth place in the rankings, 15 points back.

Here’s the final results of Friday’s Lucas Oil 200 at Dover International Speedway:

  1. Kyle Busch
  2. Ryan Blaney
  3. Johnny Sauter
  4. Brandon Jones
  5. Joey Coulter
  6. John Hunter Nemechek
  7. Ben Kennedy
  8. Tyler Reddick
  9. German Quiroga Jr.
  10. Timothy Peters
  11. Ron Hornaday Jr.
  12. John Wes Townley
  13. Scott Riggs
  14. Cole Custer
  15. T.J. Bell
  16. Darrell Wallace Jr.
  17. Tyler Young
  18. Jeb Burton
  19. Justin Jennings
  20. Jennifer Jo Cobb
  21. Gray Gaulding
  22. Ben Rhodes
  23. Matt Crafton
  24. Ryan Sieg
  25. Bryan Silas
  26. Mason Mingus
  27. Brennan Newberry
  28. Norm Benning
  29. Jake Crum
  30. Jimmy Weller III
  31. Raymond Terczak Jr.
  32. Charles Lewandoski
  33. Todd Peck
  34. Ryan Ellis
  35. Blake Koch

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Helio Castroneves ‘hustling’ for IndyCar, IMSA rides; talking with four to five teams

Helio Castroneves IMSA IndyCar
IMSA
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As his season gathers steam, Helio Castroneves said his prospects for finding new rides for 2021 in IMSA and IndyCar also are gaining momentum.

The three-time Indianapolis 500 winner said Monday he is optimistic about landing in either or perhaps a combination of both series when Team Penske and Acura end their DPi partnership after this season.

“A lot of people I spoke with, four to five teams, are interested,” Castroneves said. “Whether it’s doing Indy 500 only, whether it’s pushing to do full time or do the sports cars as well. It’s been a very nice conversation.

LOOKING AHEADTeam Penske drivers seeking new rides for 2021

“I have a lot of respect for all the teams that have been talking, and I feel the same feedback. We just have to wait for their (sponsor) connections, and I’m also looking for some connections on my side as well, so hopefully we’ll be able to put this together and get something very soon.”

Given two decades of success with Penske in IndyCar and IMSA, Castroneves’ resume hardly needs burnishing. But the Brazilian has combined with co-driver Ricky Taylor in the No. 7 Acura DPi to win the past two overall victories at Road America and Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta.

But Castroneves, who doesn’t have a manager, said he has been working the phones hard rather than wait for the strong results to bring in the calls.

“At this point, I feel like I’m the one who needs to be talking to them because people need to know I want to continue racing and understand my desire,” Castroneves, 45, said. “There is opportunity, no question, in both (IndyCar and IMSA), which I’m really happy about it. However, because of the COVID-19, a lot of things sometimes have to be a little delayed. But I’m excited. Whatever the opportunity and whatever destiny guides me, whether IndyCar or sports cars, trust me I’ll be as happy as it could be and doing my 100 percent like I always did.

“It’s like politics, you need to be out there, good news or bad news. People have to make notice of your presence. I’m hustling. I want to continue to keep it going. Hopefully, we’ll have good news very soon.”

The news has been all good lately on track for Castroneves and Taylor, who hope to continue their run Sunday at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

The No. 6 duo has surged to sixth in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship standings, 10 points out of the lead with four races remaining. After thinking there was “no hope” to be competitive after opening the season with three consecutive poor finishes, Taylor now sees an opportunity for a happy ending.

“With the program going away, Helio has won all the big races and given so much back to the team and left such a mark, he’s really part of Penske history,” Taylor said. “For me, it’s been an opportunity of a lifetime to be a part of it. I’d like to leave my little mark as well. Helio has won everything except for a championship.

“Obviously, we’ve won races already together, but we can win a championship now. I think if both of us can do that together and both win our first championship for ‘The Captain,’ that would be an absolute dream come true, and we can tie a bow on it and be happy.”