Kyle Busch led all but one lap and claimed his first Xfinity Series win at his home track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Saturday, leading Joe Gibbs Racing to a one-two-three finish.
Teammates Daniel Suarez and Erik Jones finished second and third, respectively—but well behind the reigning Sprint Cup Series champion.
Busch led 199 of 200 laps, marking the most dominant victory at a 1.5-mile track in Xfinity Series history, according to the Fox Sports 1 telecast.
Busch extended his Xfinity Series record to 78 wins and has now gone to Victory Lane in eight of the 16 races he's competed in since suffering a broken leg in the 2014 season opener. He also won last week at Atlanta.
Here is a look at the rest of the results for Saturday's 40-car field:
|25||Ray Black Jr.|
|33||Darrell Wallace Jr.|
Over the final 10 laps, Suarez started to creep his way back as Busch approached lapped traffic and fuel mileage became a concern.
Suarez chipped more than a second off Busch's lead, but he still finished 0.817 seconds behind. Suarez captured the points lead as a consolation prize, though. Here is a look at the rest of the top 10 in the standings:
|1||Daniel Suarez||106 (Leader)|
|2||Elliott Sadler||104 (-3)|
|3||Ty Dillon||99 (-7)|
|4||Brandon Jones||99 (-7)|
|5||Justin Allgaier||95 (-11)|
|6||Brendan Gaughan||91 (-15)|
|7||Erik Jones||86 (-20)|
|8||Ryan Reed||79 (-27)|
|9||Ryan Sieg||73 (-33)|
|10||Jeb Burton||72 (-34)|
According to the telecast, Busch was reportedly saving gas after jumping to a two-second lead over Suarez following the final restart with 58 laps to go, and Suarez chipped off some time, per PRN Radio (h/t Chris Knight of Catchfence):
But that played into Busch's strategy, as his crew chief told Busch to build a sizable lead before saving fuel, according to the telecast. Then, once he reached the threshold, knowing he'd reach the checkers, Busch put his foot to the throttle again.
Xfinity Racing shared a video of the 78-time winner celebrating in Victory Lane, not far from where he grew up:
Other than a nasty wreck that brought out the red flag with 65 to go, Saturday's race was clean.
The violent incident occurred when Darrell Wallace Jr. fishtailed and loosely T-boned a stalled Cody Ware coming out of Turn 2. Debris spilled across the backstretch and led to the delay.
Here is a brief look at the replay, courtesy of NASCAR Xfinity:
Before the collision, Ware got loose heading into Turn 1, spun up the race track, hit the wall and glided out onto the backstretch as the caution waved. But the incident occurred at the worst blind spot on the track, making Ware a sitting duck and Wallace an unfortunate victim.
"By the time I saw the No. 25 [Ware], I was already pitched sideways," Wallace said in an in-race interview with Fox Sports 1. "That's a hell of a hit, but I thank the Lord that we all walked away OK."
Wallace added that his spotter tried to warn him about the melee he was about to be part of, but there was no time to react coming off Turn 2 at such high speeds.
On top of that, the NASCAR tower didn't initially see Ware's one-car wreck in Turn 1 and was late in throwing the caution, per Bob Pockrass of ESPN.com.
Justin Marks, who was also caught up in the accident, gave his assessment of what happened to the Fox Sports 1 telecast:
When a car wrecks and doesn't stay up there, starts sliding down, we all have to make a decision pretty quick whether we're going to go high or go low. And when the spinning car comes down the race track, you have to make that decision pretty quickly and it looks like it was kind of a matter of luck for about five or six of us whether we were going to make it through or not.
All drivers were cleared from the infield care center, though Ware looked shaken up in a picture Jeff Gluck of USA Today shared:
Cody Ware. He's ok, folks. pic.twitter.com/ISEc9890Wh— Jeff Gluck (@jeff_gluck) March 5, 2016
The first caution waved just as the drivers were getting up to speed. Ryan Preece nicked the wall coming out of Turn 4 on his first lap and collided with Corey LaJoie when swerving back onto the race track, sending LaJoie across the infield.
Here is a look at LaJoie making a nice save as the yellow waved, via NASCAR Xfinity:
Busch again proved his dominance as arguably the best driver in Xfinity Series history. Not many drivers on the Sprint Cup circuit compete in the midlevel series, but Busch does so to gain more reps and knowledge of the tracks.
He has just one Sprint Cup win at Las Vegas and will roll off 23rd on Sunday, seeking to pull off a weekend sweep.