Stewart-Haas Racing's Kurt Busch was able to celebrate his second win of the year after race officials called an early end to the Quicken Loans 400 at Michigan International Speedway on Sunday afternoon.

"It's an unbelievable feeling to know what we went through, paced ourselves and found the lead towards the latter part of the race and then the rain came in," said Busch after word came down that the race would not resume after the latest rain delay called a halt to proceedings after 138 of the scheduled 200 laps.

"You have to get down and dirty. You have to really roll-up your sleeves, get your elbows dirty, and put the work into it," he continued. "Thanks to Monster Energy, Chevrolet, Haas Automation and everybody at Stewart-Haas. This is a fantastic series to race in and it's a pleasure to be able to drive into Victory Lane.

"It's a team combination all the way around," added Busch, who had been forced to compete this weekend in his backup car after an accident in practice on Friday wrote off the primary. "To be able to pull the backup car out and to have it as prepared as it was and then to have the extra work that went into it, all the crew members that Tony Gibson leads rolled up their sleeves, jumped right on in it, and we made it a race-winning backup car. That shows you the depth of Stewart-Haas Racing.

"It's amazing when you have team chemistry at the level we do," he insisted. "It gives every crew member that much more confidence to know that we're doing things right, and today the way the race unfolded for us, to come up from 24th and work our way through and have those restarts, everything unfolded perfectly for us."

CLICK: Full race results for the Quicken Loans 400 at Michigan.

The weather had been on everyone's mind from the very start, but surprisingly the green flag came out on time to get proceedings underway. The front row pair wrestled over for the lead until finally Joe Gibbs Racing's Carl Edwards got the better of pole winner Kasey Kahne and started to pull away, but just as the drivers were settling in for the long haul the first spots of rain started to fall over the circuit.

After just ten minutes of racing the red flags were out to recall the field to pit lane. While heavy, the shower proved mercifully brief and the Air Titans briskly completed their track drying work so that just an hour later the cars were ushered back out again; whereupon with exquisitely painful timing the next shower rolled in and shut proceedings down for a second time before the green flag could even be shown.

At least this shower wasn't as heavy as the last, and the two-mile track was soon back up and running. Better still, the next shower held off long enough for the race to reach the scheduled competition caution on lap 40 and inaugurate the first round of pit stops, which saw Kevin Harvick pick up the lead for the first time ahead of Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Kyle Busch while Edwards and Kahne fell back to fourth and fifth respectively.

Unfortunately while the cars were on pit road, the rain chose that moment to pick up again. The race was sent back to red flag conditions for the second time in what was already proving to be a frustrating afternoon for all concerned.

Once the Air Titans had once again done their duty, the cars were hustled back out onto the track for another attempt to get the party started. Despite reports that the rain was picking up again the green flag was shown and straight away many cars came close to crashing out and drivers had to apply every ounce of their talent to save their cars from disaster.

Inevitably the luck had to finally run out for someone, and in the end it was Kyle Busch who hammered the turn 4 wall on lap 52 in the Joe Gibbs Racing #18 to bring out the cautions once more. Busch was uninjured but in no mood to speak with the media after this latest blow to his 2015 championship hopes, already looking precarious following an 11-race lay-off as a result of injuries sustained in a racing accident at Daytona in February.

Harvick led at the restart on lap 59 with JGR's Matt Kenseth swiftly moving into the shotgun position. An incident between David Gilliland and Mike Bliss on lap 65 sent the Front Row Motorsport #34 to the garage as the second retirement of the day, but fortunately the incident didn't trigger another in a lengthening line of cautions and the racing continued.

Other cars reported glitches - Earnhardt worried about a vibration, while Kenseth and both Penskes of Brad Keselowski Joey Logano all picking up debris on their front grilles that sent water temperatures spiralling - but none were forced to make an unscheduled stop to sort out the problems, as the race finally settled into a decent green flag stint for the first time.

Harvick was in for a pit stop under green on lap 83 with Kenseth and then Joey Logano inheriting the lead in turn as the stops cycled through. Harvick was back out in front in time for the midway point of the 200-lap race, followed by Kenseth, Edwards, Earnhardt and Kurt Busch. He was still unchallenged at the front when he came in for his second green flag stop on lap 121 but it proved to be his undoing, as he was forced to come back to pit lane next time by as his new front right tyre promptly went flat with a faulty valve stem. To rub salt into the wound, the race then went under caution for debris in turns 3 and 4, all of which conspired to put Harvick a lap down despite having dominated the race up to this point with a race-high 63 laps at the front.

With more weather incoming, Ganassi's Kyle Larson gambled on staying out under the caution to lead at the restart on lap 129 with Kurt Busch moving into second ahead of Earnhardt. The rain didn't arrive soon enough for the gambit to pay off and Larson was forced to make a green flag stop moments later.

"We could see weather coming there off of 4 and just praying that it would get here in time for me to stay out and be in the lead when the rain did hit," said Larson after the race. "Hey, I applaud my guys for trying. We are pretty deep in points so we have to take risks like that to make the Chase. I'm happy with the call, just wish the rain would have come three laps sooner."

That handed Busch the lead on lap 133, and on lap 136 rain was reported to be falling over the circuit once more. The red flags were duly brought out for their fourth airing, and with the race now past the midway point - meaning that the race was officially 'in the books' without the need to recall everyone back on Monday to finish things off - the question was whether it would ever resume.

The lack of floodlights at Michigan meant that the clock was counting down to sunset, and so in the end the decision wasn't long in coming: the race was indeed called, and Busch duly handed his 27th victory in 519 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races and his third career win at Michigan.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. was classified in second place and none too sure that he could have done any better even if the race had got back underway. "The #41 was pretty fast on new tyres, so we needed a long run and I would have liked to have had the outside on the restart and never really had that. It was kind of the preferred line on restarts. I never really had that advantage."

Meanwhile Martin Truex Jr. picked up his 14th top ten finish in the first 15 races of the season - the first time that has happened since Richard Petty in 1969. "Really proud to have my name mentioned next to Richard Petty," said Truex. "The King is pretty special and I am so thankful for my team and what they've done this year. Hopefully we'll keep this thing rolling."

In the Sprint Cup Series championship, Harvick continues to lead by 15 points from Truex followed by Joey Logano, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson and Brad Keselowski. All of the top six also have at least one race win in 2015 making them a virtual lock for the Chase. Other winners on course to make the play-offs are Denny Hamlin, Matt Kenseth, Carl Edwards, and this week' race winner Kurt Busch who now has two wins this season under his belt.

"It comes down to this Chase deal, it's like we want to win every week," admitted Busch. "People ask you, are you going to go lax, are you going to take it easy, and you can't. Everything we do - whether it's an adjustment or whether it's the right way or the wrong way or predicting weather, what the car is going to do, all that's going to help us in the Chase when it comes time. We're still working hard on it, and like I said, we're nowhere near where we need to be, but we're working hard, but we're working together as a team.

"There's so many tangibles that come up from a win, and bonus points for the Chase, we're not really thinking of that, but any time you win a second race, it really gives you that stamp on you're in the Chase, now let's work through these summer months to continue to make the team better."

The Sprint Cup Series now takes a rare week off. The next race is the Toyota/Save Mart 350 set for June 28, which is the first road course race of the year at Sonoma Raceway. However the Xfinity Series and the Camping World Truck Series will both be back in action next weekend, at Chicagoland Speedway and Iowa Speedway respectively.

See full race results from Michigan and updated Sprint Cup Championship standings.

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