Kyle Busch managed to hold off the impressive rookie Parker Kligerman in a green-white-chequered finish to win the UNOH 225 Camping World Truck Series race at Kentucky Speedway on Thursday night.
Busch needed to overcome a penalty for missing the mandatory drivers' meeting and driver introductions, which meant that he started from the back of the grid when the race got underway under the floodlights.
The first major incident of the race came on lap 76 when four-time champion Ron Hornaday Jr. had the #33 get loose as he ran on the inside of the #60 of Cole Whitt, the two cars ending up in the wall. Jack Smith's #63 was unfortunate to be first on the scene of the accident and he knocked Hornaday back down the track which promptly collected Josh Richards and John King.
Kyle Busch was already in a position to lead at the restart, but polesitter Johnny Sauter got the better of him on lap 103 to lead, until his rear axle broke during a pit stop on lap 124. Austin Dillon then took up the torch to carry the fight to Busch, only for the hood of the #3 Truck to come loose and fly up, obscuring his vision and forcing a costly return to pit lane. Another potential threat to Busch, Joey Coulter faltered on a restart five laps before the end.
Former F1 driver Nelson Piquet Jr. overshot his pit stall on Lap 120 which cost him vital time and sent him tumbling down the order. Piquet was then involved in a multiple-car wreck on lap 146 when he made contact with Miguel Paludo, which then also caught up Steve Arpin, Tim Peters and Ryan Sieg and sent the race into a green-white-chequered finish.
Busch got the best restart, with Jason White spinning his tyres when the cars got back up to speed. "It's hard to not be the leader in those positions and not spin your tires. I know how they feel," said Kyle afterwards.
"I figured if I could just get another good restart where I didn't spin my tires, I'd be all right," he said. "Those guys spun their tires every time, and it kind of worked for us."
It's Busch's first win at Kentucky in three Truck starts, his fifth Trucks win of 2011 and his 29th win in 93 series starts. They contribute to 98 NASCAR wins at Cup, Nationwide and Truck level combined which is the third highest tally of all time.
It's also Busch's first win of the weekend, at which he has his eyes set on a triple crown attempt. He is also competing in Friday's Feed the Children 300 Nationwide Series event and Saturday's Quaker State 400 Sprint Cup race.
Full Truck race results