In his 100th Toyota Tundra start, Kyle Busch captured his second NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) victory of the season in Friday night’s NC Education Lottery 200.
• Busch won all three stages at Charlotte Motor Speedway after starting from the fourth starting position and led 90 laps (of 134).
• Nine of the top 10 vehicles were Toyota Tundras with Christopher Bell (third), Ryan Truex (fourth) and Timothy Peters (fifth) rounding out the top five.
KYLE BUSCH, No. 51 Cessna Toyota Tundra, Kyle Busch Motorsports
Finishing Position: 1st
Second win in a row, how does it feel to be back in victory lane?
“It means a lot. These guys, they pour their hearts and souls into our trucks and what we do with our Toyota Tundras. It’s awesome to get Cessna back to back wins here and back to victory lane again and of course just a true testament to Rowdy Manufacturing, everybody in the chassis shop doing a fantastic job and Kyle Busch Motorsports, all the guys going home. Everyone on this 51 team, they’ve done a great job. I can’t say enough about Rudy (Fugle, crew chief) and everybody on the 4 (Christopher Bell) as well as Marcus (Richmond, crew chief) on the 18 (Noah Gragson). We’re all really working as a cohesive group and guys are doing a great job. For us to be out front most of the laps tonight, it was fun. It was challenging there that middle section of the race. That was kind of chaotic. I didn’t know what was going on half the time. We made it through there and got to the front and was able to win this thing. Just real proud of the whole team effort.”
Walk us through the bold move you made on Lap 89.
“Yeah that was interesting. You know the whole second segment of the race was really interesting for us. We led the first segment of the race and got ourselves those segment points for the owner’s championship. And then there the second segment we were kind of back in traffic and we really got freight trained when the outside lane went on that restart. Got backwards and had to work our way back up to the front. Those guys were kind of road blocking it bottom and middle and I’m like well, there’s one lane left and that’s the top so I better go use it. It was a little dirty up there, but I gave it my everything and got a huge run off the top. When (Matt) Crafton came off the corner, he left the middle open. You know I thought I was gonna have to push the 21 (Johnny Sauter), but he left the middle open so I just squeezed it three-wide and got it right up through the middle there and barreled it off into turn 3 as far as I could. Great race. Lot of fun. Can’t say enough about all our guys at KBM and everyone on this Toyota Tundra team, they’ve done a fantastic job. It was really really fast. It’s great to be able to get Cessna back to victory lane two weeks in a row and of course having them on board with us this year gives us a lot of great opportunities to improve our stuff.”
With no practice under the lights for the Cup Series, how important was tonight’s race to see what the track might do?
“Yes, I don’t know exactly. Certainly it’s always something that you can pick up with it and I certainly did tonight. I felt like I did. You know it was a fun race going from the day to qualifying was really really slick with these Tundras and these trucks and we made the most of it tonight. We had to tighten up a little bit as the night progressed. I’m figuring we’ll probably have to do a little bit of that tomorrow case we freed up our car in the day time today. Overall the M&M’s Camry was really fast, showed good speed. A couple other cars are pretty fast too so we’ll see how it goes.”
Do you ever think about the 51 wins by Ron Hornaday in this series and consider how close you’re getting with 48 wins?
“Yes and no, certainly when I’m at my shop and hanging out with the KBM boys and looking at all the banners, you kind of reflect on it a little bit and we’ve come a long way just being around since 2010. It’s been a fantastic run and we win a lot, which is great – with all different crew chiefs at my building, which is better and working with all the people and all the hard work that they put in, you want to reward them. Fortunately I can do that in the Truck Series and the record is just a number I guess. Certainly I remember surpassing Mark Martin on the XFINITY side and it was a lot of fun and pretty interesting so looking forward to hopefully passing Ron on the truck side and being able to set that a little higher and hopefully one day when I’m all said and done with the Cup stuff, maybe I’ll run my retirement tour in the Truck Series and win the championship and get the trifecta so we’ll see how that goes.”
What would it mean to win the Coke 600 or the All-Star race?
“It would mean a ton, anytime you can win here in Charlotte it’s in front of your friends, your family and your fans and everybody in the close area of the race shop. I would certainly love to do that and we’ve talked about it for a lot of years, but just kind of been eluded and not able to score that win and I think we have a fast piece over there. My M&M’s Caramel Camry has got some good speed in it. We’re starting up front and that’s a good omen hopefully and we can keep ourselves up front for much of night and put ourselves in position when it matters most in those final 10 laps.”
KEVIN ‘BONO’ MANION, crew chief, No. 51 Cessna Toyota Tundra, Kyle Busch Motorsports
What does it mean to win in front of the home track at Charlotte?
“In front of the home crowd with a lot of guys and girls from the shop here is really special and always a win at your home track, your given home track. It seemed rather easy in the first segment and like Kyle (Busch) said, in the second segment got challenging being stuck on the bottom. Kyle did a good job in the high line and then the Red Sea parted there and he went between those two trucks with just a couple to go. That set us up for the last segment and with the laps winding down we were keeping track and then the caution came out just a little too late to take tires with a little cushion behind us, for the guys that did pit there was no chance to get back to the front.”
CHRISTOPHER BELL, No. 4 SiriusXM Toyota Tundra, Kyle Busch Motorsports
Finishing Position: 3rd
What happened to get you a couple of laps down early on?
“I think we had a flat right rear – or left rear when we fired off. It was really really loose the first couple laps and then finally went down off of (turn) four there. All these guys on this SiriusXM Tundra did a great job of getting me back out there. I had a second-place truck. Ran third with it. That’s what’s frustrating. Glad my boss won, that’s cool. We’ll be back and stronger than ever at Dover.”