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Press Snoop: Busch boys shine under PIR lights.


KURT BUSCH grabbed the lead from pole sitter JEFF GORDON and ran with it for the first 67 laps of the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Subway Fresh 500 race at Phoenix International Raceway on Saturday night's inaugural spring race under the lights.

He turned the races fastest lap of 130.175mph on the second lap. Busch, the 2004 Cup champion, led six times for a record-high of 219 laps. He ended his dry spell of winless races dating back to last September. This marked Busch's twelfth Cup victory. It was also the twelfth victory for Ford at PIR, the most of any manufacturer in its 18-race history. Busch is the third Roush racer this season to win a race; he won $264,000.

Kurt Busch's younger brother, KYLE BUSCH was the top finishing rookie, eighth place in the race, and is now 25th in the points. Kyle Busch also picked up the USG Improving the Finish Award for gaining 19 positions in the race. Young Busch is the rookie points leader.

MICHAEL WALTRIP drove a hard race, led twice for 23 laps and was charging after Kurt Busch for the win. He took the high line, which others say he often does, and he makes it work...most of the time. On the last lap, DEI driver, Waltrip, hit the wall three times, but said it didn't seem to make any difference. His explanation for the hits was 'I ran out of talent'.

Third place finisher, JEFF BURTON saw Waltrip bouncing off the wall, and said Waltrip hits the wall a lot. Burton chased Waltrip, but said he could see he wasn't catching him. Burton said he didn't notice the wind at all until he exited the car.

Waltrip's DEI team-mate, DALE EARNHARDT Jr finished fourth, perhaps mercifully ending the speculation, at least for now, about what is going on at DEI for the two drivers. Earnhardt and Waltrip both are visibly tired of answering questions on the subject.

BRIAN VICKERS finished fifth. BOBBY LABONTE started fourth and finished sixth, pulling him into the desired top 35 points drivers, which will guarantee him a starting spot for next weekend's Talladega race.

All cars cleared NASCAR technical inspection.

The average race speed was 102.707mph. There were 16 lead changes among nine drivers. Nine cautions took up 43 of the 312-lap race.

PIR doesn't give out attendance figures, but someone in NASCAR comes up with a crowd count. Tonight's crowd, braving the iffy weather, numbered 105,000. The grandstands were sold out of their 76,000 seats, and the hillsides and RV parking areas seemed full.

It started raining soon after the race, quickly picking up force. Monsoons are legendary in Arizona.



Related Pictures

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03/11/05 Las Vegas. Kurt Busch a Las Vegas native starts 5th in front of his hometown crowd. Photo Credit: autostock
NASCAR Nextel Cup Series #5 Kellogg`s Chevrolet driver Kyle Busch at Daytona International Speedway, Daytona Beach, FL-2/20/05 ©Dorsey Patrick
Dale Earnhardt Jr, driver of the #88 Nationwide Stars And Stripes Chevrolet SS, takes the chequered flag, Sunday July 5, 2015, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Following in second place is Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Patriotic Chevrolet SS. (Photo by Andrew Coppley/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Dale Earnhardt Jr, driver of the #88 Nationwide Stars And Stripes Chevrolet SS, takes the chequered flag, Sunday July 5, 2015, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Dale Earnhardt Jr, driver of the #88 Nationwide Stars And Stripes Chevrolet SS, takes the chequered flag, Sunday July 5, 2015, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Dale Earnhardt Jr, driver of the #88 Nationwide Stars And Stripes Chevrolet SS, celebrates his win Sunday July 5, 2015, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Stars and Stripes Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Stars and Stripes Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Stars and Stripes Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida (Photo Credit: Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Stars and Stripes Chevrolet, affixes the winner’s decal to his car in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Sarah Crabill/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Stars and Stripes Chevrolet, takes the chequered flag to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Stars and Stripes Chevrolet, and Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, lead the field prior to the start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 5, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Daniel Suarez, driver of the #18 ARRIS Toyota, leads the field to the green flag to start the NASCAR XFINITY Series Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 4, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Bobby Gerhart, driver of the #85 Lucas Oil Chevrolet, is involved in an on-track incident during the NASCAR XFINITY Series Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 4, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Brennan Poole, driver of the #42 DC Solar Chevrolet, Aric Almirola, driver of the #98 Fresh from Florida Ford, Blake Koch, driver of the #8 Celsius Healthy Energy Cola Toyota, Chris Buescher, driver of the #60 Bit-O-Honey Ford, Dakoda Armstrong, driver of the #43 WinField Ford, and Regan Smith, driver of the #7 Fire Alarm Services Chevrolet, are involved in an on-track incident during the NASCAR XFINITY Series Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 4, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Sarah Crabill/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #33 Rheem Chevrolet, takes the chequered flag to win the NASCAR XFINITY Series Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 4, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #33 Rheem Chevrolet, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 4, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Sarah Crabill/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #33 Rheem Chevrolet, celebrates after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 4, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/NASCAR via Getty Images)

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