Kyle Busch Motorsports owner/driver Kyle Busch qualified fourth in his return to the Camping World Truck Series, running a fast lap of 180.240 mph (29.960 seconds) in the No. 51 ToyotaCare Toyota Tundra during qualifying for the NC Education Lottery 200 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Friday afternoon. KBM’s Darrell Wallace Jr., in the No. 54 Liberty Tire Recycling Toyota, qualified 13th in his first start at Charlotte with a lap of 179.283 mph (30.120 seconds), while Joey Coulter, in the No.18 Darrell Gwynn Foundation Toyota qualified 17th with a speed of 178.707 mph (30.217 seconds).
Coulter made his way into the top 15 early in the race, but had a tire go down on Lap 70. The No. 18 crew made a four-tire change, but one lap later, a broken fender brace cut down the right front tire and sent Coulter into the frontstretch wall. Coulter spent numerous laps in the garage, returning to the field 44 laps down after repairs; he finished 32nd.
Wallace Jr. had a strong race but no results to show for it. After running in the top 10 throughout the race, Wallace Jr. spun out in the second turn after contact and hit the inside wall on Lap 121 of the 134-lap event. With too much damage to repair before the race’s conclusion, Wallace Jr. went to the garage and was credited with a 27th-place finish.
All was not lost for the KBM team, however, as the boss made his return to victory lane, his fifth Truck Series win at Charlotte and the 31st Truck Series win of his career. Busch, who had engine issues twice during practice for the race, had issues on pit road under caution when the gas can got stuck and his crew member was unable to remove it before Busch left the pit stall; under NASCAR rules, Busch had to return to pit road for a penalty and then restart from the tail-end of the field.
Busch restarted the race in 19th on Lap 87, and within six laps was back in the top 10. Busch took the lead for good on Lap 121, holding on for the victory over Brendan Gaughan, Max Gresham, Matt Crafton and Ty Dillon. Busch led a race-high 80 laps.
“Rudy (Fugle, crew chief) and these guys gave me a great ToyotaCare Tundra and it was really awesome,” said Busch on the KBM website. “I have to say thanks to JGR (Joe Gibbs Racing) engines and Mark Cronquist (engine builder) and those guys. They gave these guys a heart attack – they have been working too hard these last couple weeks. ToyotaCare – can’t say enough about them. We appreciate their support and you get complimentary service on any new Toyota you buy. Flexco, Monster Energy, TRD (Toyota Racing Development) of course – we couldn’t do it without all those guys. The fans – we appreciate them coming on out and supporting us here tonight and watching on TV. Of course Camping World for the series, it’s fun to race here and we don’t ever make anything too easy.”
The Camping World Truck Series gets back on track on Friday, May 31st at Dover International Speedway, with the same three drivers behind the wheels. Keep up with the action at www.kylebuschmotorsports.com.
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