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Nationwide: Busch Brothers dominate the Glen

If your name wasn't Busch, then you weren't going to be leading a lap during this Nationwide Series race at Watkins Glen, with Kurt coming out top at the chequered flag.
The 'Zippo 200 at the Glen' Nationwide Series race at Watkins Glen International started with a front row consisting of Busch brothers, and pretty much the rest of the race was a similar tale of the two brothers.

Kurt Busch had claimed pole position for the race on Saturday morning despite being a late midweek replacement in the car for his Penske team mate Brad Keselowski, who is still suffering from his testing accident at Road Atlanta the previous week. It's Kurt's third Nationwide pole in 12 starts, his first since 2007 - and all three have come at the Glen.

Kurt found himself joined at the front heading to the chequered flag by his younger brother Kyle, not exactly known as a road course specialist although he'd also claimed pole position in the Sprint Cup race at the Glen so he was definitely a force to contend with.

Kurt was able to convert pole to the initial race lead and maintained the position for the first eight laps. Kyle was looking the faster car however and on lap nine he got past the #22 through the inner loop, only to then cut onto the rumble strips through turn 1 which gave Kurt the opportunity to immediately retake the lead. Worse, an off-track excursion left him with a grille clogged with grass and on lap 18 he was forced into pit lane with an overheating engine and steam pouring out of the car.

The team cleaned up the #18 and put him back out with a full tank of fuel and an alternate strategy: to try and make it the rest of the 82 scheduled 2.45-mile laps on just one more pit stop. But it was pushing feasibility to think it was going to work and some caution laps were very much required - and absolutely, definitely no green-white-chequered flags extending the end of the race.

Kyle got lucky with the first part - a yellow flag on lap 25 when Eric McLure came to a halt on track through the esses, which came just after everyone else had cycled through for green flag pit stops. That meant that Kyle was now back out in front on his off-sync strategy, followed by Kurt, Ron Fellows, Carl Edwards and Elliott Sadler at the restart.

Kyle stayed in front, pulling away from Kurt and Carl, until lap 50 when he came in for what he hoped would be his final pit stop of the day. He'd done a good job, with the rest of the field starting to come in almost immediately afterwards with brother Kurt only lasting until lap 55 before surrendering back the lead to Kyle for his own stop. But the crew of the #18 - led by crew chief Jason Ratcliff - were under no illusions that those five laps were crucial, the difference between making it and potentially not.

They still needed cautions, and this time none materialised, even when Mike Wallace spun at the entrance to the final turn on lap 75. By lap 78 it was clear that even having leaned off as much as possible and allowed Kurt, Carl Edwards, Ron Fellows and the rest of the field to close right up to him, there was no chance of making it those final four laps and his fuel pressure started to fail.

"We were running hard together," Kurt said of his battle with his brother. "It wasn't to force him to run out of fuel. I wanted to race him as fair and square as you can, but we knew that they were short."




Related Pictures

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Kurt Busch, driver of the #22 Discount Tire/Ruby Tuesday Dodge, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Zippo 200 at Watkins Glen International on Aug. 13 in Watkins Glen, N.Y. [Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/Getty Images]
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s/Budweiser Chevrolet, races during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 22, 2015 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet, leads the field during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 22, 2015 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt, Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet SS finishes in sixth place and Paul Menard, driver of the #27 FVP/Menards Chevrolet SS finishes in fourth place Sunday, March 22, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS finishes in third place and Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS finishes in second place Sunday, March 22, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet, practices for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 21, 2015 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Jeff Gross/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet, climbs into his car prior to practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 21, 2015 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet SS qualifies for fifth position Friday, March 20, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Larson is 17th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS qualifies for 2nd position Friday, March 20, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Harvick leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. Joining him on the front row will be Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS who won the Pole position. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS celebrates with his team after winning the Pole position Friday, March 20, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Busch is 33rd in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. Joining him on the front row will be Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS won the Pole position Friday, March 20, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Busch is 33rd in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. Joining him on the front row will be Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kyle Larson drives the #42 Target Chevrolet through the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2015 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet, poses for a photo with Miss Coors Light Rachel Rupert after winning the pole during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2015 in Fontana, California.  (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John’s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS celebrates his victory Sunday, March 15, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Speedway in Phoenix, Arizona. This is Harvick`s fourth straight win at Phoenix. (Photo by Gregg Ellman/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John’s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS races to victory Sunday, March 15, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Speedway in Phoenix, Arizona. This is Harvick`s fourth straight win at Phoenix. (Photo by Gregg Ellman/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John’s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS stops in his pit before victory Sunday, March 15, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Speedway in Phoenix, Arizona. This is Harvick`s fourth straight win at Phoenix. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John’s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS crosses the finish line Sunday, March 15, 2015 winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Speedway in Phoenix, Arizona. This is Harvick`s fourth straight win at Phoenix. This is Harvick`s fourth straight win at Phoenix. (Photo by Gregg Ellman/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 NATIONWIDE Chevrolet, is involved in an on-track incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series CampingWorld.com 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on March 15, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo Credit: Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

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