“It was all about the restarts,” said Hamlin. “That’s why you saw the wrecks that you did in turns one and two. Passing was just not that easy. It’s part of it. It’s part of this race track, the challenge that comes into it. Got a bad restart on that last restart and went back to 10th or so, so I was happy to rebound to sixth. Wish we would have had a shot to get up front at some point. Just couldn’t overcome the traffic.”
His Toyota teammates Busch, Matt DiBenedetto, Jones and Truex ran within the top 10 at different points of the race, however, all suffered damage after various incidents on pit road and the track took them out of race contention.Earlier in the weekend Busch found himself in familiar territory – in victory lane at the Brickyard. After starting from the pole position in Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series event (NXS) at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Busch led 46 laps (of 100) en route to his fourth win in seven races at the 2.5-mile oval. He’s the only repeat winner at the track in the Xfinity Series.
“Anybody that was behind you, you had to rely on them,” said Busch. “You can’t win these races by yourself anymore, you have to rely on those that are around you. Jeb (Burton) obviously did a really good job with the restart coming up through the gears. He actually timed the push really well and it helped us. It propelled us to where we were able to score the victory.”
The win was also Busch’s fourth of the season in only seven starts and marks his 96th NXS career triumph. This was also Toyota’s series-leading 10th victory of the year.
After winning the event’s first stage, Brandon Jones finished sixth for his 12th top-10 result of the season. NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series competitor Austin Hill finished ninth in his NXS debut.
Logan Seavey swept a pair of POWRi events in Illinois over the weekend, winning at Jacksonville Speedway on Friday and then earning top honors at Spoon River Speedway on Saturday. Toyota drivers swept all three podium positions on the both nights.
In USAC action, Chad Boat placed fourth as the top-finishing Toyota driver at the Driven2SaveLives BC39 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
The NASCAR Cup Series kicks off the 10-race Playoffs at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sunday, September 15 at 7 p.m. EDT on NBCSN. The NASCAR Xfinity Series and Gander Outdoors Truck Series also compete in Las Vegas with the Truck Series on Friday, September 13 at 9 p.m. EDT on FS1 and Xfinity Series on Saturday, September 14 at 7:30 p.m. EDT on NBCSN.
The NHRA also begins their Countdown to the Championship this weekend in Reading, Pennsylvania with the finals broadcast on Sunday, September 15 at 2 p.m. EDT on FS1.
The ARCA Racing Series is set to compete at Indiana’s Salem Speedway on Saturday, September 14 at 7 p.m. EDT on MAVTV.The POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget League competes in two races with the first feature at Belle-Clair Speedway in Belleville, Illinois, on Friday, September 13. They also compete at Illinois’ Macon Speedway on Saturday, September 14.