Saturday, March 12, 2011

Kasey Takes Kyle Busch Motorsports Truck to Win at Darlington

Geoff Burke/ Getty Images for NASCAR

By Jared Turner
Special to the Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service

DARLINGTON, S.C.—Kasey Kahne did it again.

Making his first and possibly only Camping World Truck Series start of the year, Kahne cruised to a relatively comfortable win in Saturday’s Too Tough To Tame 200 at Darlington Raceway.

The victory made Kahne the first driver in the truck series to win three of his first four starts.

Second alongside Elliott Sadler on a restart with 53 laps to go, Kahne immediately dispatched of Sadler—who had taken two tires under the previous caution—and never trailed again.

Kahne held on through three more restarts, including a final one with three laps to go, to take the checkered flag ahead of four-time series champion Ron Hornaday Jr. and 2010 Darlington winner Todd Bodine. Matt Crafton and James Buescher completed the top five.

Kahne’s stiffest challenge over the final laps came from Bodine, who once moved alongside before getting loose and falling into the clutches of Hornaday.

“I gave it a shot and got sucked around and got loose and all that and finished third,” Bodine said.

Kahne, a full-time driver in the Sprint Cup Series since, scored truck wins at Darlington and Homestead-Miami Speedway in 2004 and finished second last year at Pocono Raceway.

Saturday marked Kahne’s second appearance in the Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota normally driven by team owner Kyle Busch, who was vacationing in Cancun.

“This is one of my favorite racetracks,” said Kahne, who qualified second and led four times for 95 of the 147 laps. “I’m really glad I came. I really enjoy driving this thing.”

Matt Crafton remained the series leader, stretching his advantage to six points on rookie Cole Whitt, who moved into second after three races. Whitt finished an impressive eighth after starting from the pole and leading twice for 30 laps before dropping back with a pit-road mistake and engine issue.

Whitt, 19, was making his fourth career truck series start, his first at Darlington.

“The track just kind of suited my driving style, and from the get-go we just kind of fell into the rhythm,” Whitt said.

The race was slowed by 10 cautions, including one for a three-truck wreck involving Johanna Long, Ricky Carmichael and Nelson Piquet Jr. that brought out the red flag for 7 minutes, 37 seconds.

Notes: Kahne’s margin of victory was 1.116 seconds. … Kahne, who started second, became the fourth winner to start inside the top five. Bodine started eighth last year, and Bobby Hamilton started 14th when he won in 2003. … Kahne’s three wins tie Rich Bickle, Andy Houston and Dave Rezendes for 27th on the all-time win list.

Article provided with permission of NASCAR

Pos # | Car # | Driver ('i' denotes ineligibility for championship)| Sponsor/ Vehicle Make

1.18 Kasey Kahne(i) Toyota Toyota
2. 33 Ron Hornaday Jr. Tide / Kroger Chevrolet
3. 30 Todd Bodine Toyota
4. 88 Matt Crafton Tarkett / Menards Chevrolet
5. 31 James Buescher Wolfpack Rentals Chevrolet
6. 17 Timothy Peters GearWrench Toyota
7. 2 Elliott Sadler(i) Armour Vienna Sausages / Bi-Lo Chevrolet
8. 60 Cole Whitt Red Bull Chevrolet
9. 13 Johnny Sauter SafeAuto / Curb Records Chevrolet
10. 81 David Starr ZACHRY Toyota
11. 92 Clay Rogers BTS Tire & Wheel Distributor / Fleet HQ Chevrolet
12. 93 Shane Sieg S&W Chevrolet
13. 77 Justin Lofton Lofton Cattle Toyota
14. 29 Parker Kligerman Penske Truck Leasing Dodge
15. 3 Austin Dillon Bass Pro Shops/Remington/Tracker Boats Chevrolet
16. 39 Ryan Sieg S&W Chevrolet
17. 5 Travis Kvapil International Truck / Monaco RV's Toyota
18. 9 Max Papis GEICO Toyota
19. 46 Craig Goess Greenville Toyota of N.C. Toyota
20. 1 Jeffrey Earnhardt Fuel Doctor Chevrolet
21. 15 Dusty Davis Vision Airlines / Emerald Coast Toyota
22. 50 T J Bell LibertyTireRecycling/PinnacleRubberMulch Chevrolet
23. 07 Jamie Dick Chevrolet
24. 66 Justin Marks GoPro Chevrolet
25. 62 Brendan Gaughan South Point Hotel and Casino Toyota
26. 57 Norm Benning Norm Benning Racing Chevrolet
27. 7 Miguel Paludo Stemco Duroline Toyota
28. 22 Joey Coulter RCR / Darrell Gwynn Foundation Chevrolet
29. 25 Tayler Malsam One Eighty Toyota
30. 4 Ricky Carmichael Monster Energy Chevrolet
31. 20 Johanna Long Panhandle Grading & Paving Toyota
32. 8 Nelson Piquet Jr. Qualcomm / Nelson Piquet Chevrolet
33. 23 Jason White Chevrolet
34. 10 Chase Mattioli Ford
35. 51 Justin Johnson Vision Airlines / Wounded Warrior Toyota
36. 32 Brad Sweet Great Clips Chevrolet

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