Busch Impresses at Lowe’s Motor Speedway
- May 25, 2003
CONCORD, N.C. (May 24, 2003) – Kyle Busch almost made it three of four.
In his first career NASCAR Busch Series start, the 18-year-old finished second in Saturday’s CARQUEST 300 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway, leading 33 of 200 laps in the No. 87 ditech.com Chevrolet, and posted the best-ever finish for a first-timer in the circuit’s history.
NASCAR Winston Cup Series leader Matt Kenseth won the event after finally catching Busch, who was battling handling problems, on Lap 171.
“I was running out there and doing whatever I could to keep that position,” Busch said. “I thought leading the race was pretty neat, but with 30 laps left anything can happen.”
After starting the race from the fifth position, Busch spent most of his time in the top five and never fell out of the top 10 during green-flag conditions.
The Las Vegas native battled Winston Cup regular Michael Waltrip at the outset, going back and forth with the two-time Daytona 500 winner before Waltrip took the lead early in the race.
Battling a tight-handling race car, Busch still managed to run quick lap times as the No. 87 ditech.com team worked in the pits to improve the car, making slight air pressure adjustments throughout the first half of the race.
While running in fourth just past Lap 135, Busch came to pit road for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment. A blazing-fast pit stop by the ditech.com team put the Las Vegas native in the first position on Lap 138, where he stayed for 33 of the next 34 laps.
Kenseth took the lead for the final time at Lap 172 as Busch dropped to second while fighting handling problems. The No. 87 Chevy held the runner-up spot for the next 28 circuits, taking the checkered flag just behind the leader.
Including Saturday’s performance, Busch has started four events with Hendrick Motorsports and sponsor ditech.com, winning two of three ARCA Series races to go with his second-place Busch Series debut.
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