News & Media

Buescher posts decisive victory at Kentucky

June 29, 2012, NASCAR Wire Service,

SPARTA, Ky. -- Streaking away from Ty Dillon and Brad Keselowski after a restart with 36 laps left, James Buescher recorded his second Camping World Truck Series victory in Thursday night's UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway.

Keselowski passed Dillon with two laps left to run second, 3.805 seconds behind Buescher. Dillon came home third, followed by pole-sitter Matt Crafton and Timothy Peters, who grabbed the series lead from Justin Lofton.

UNOH 225

2.Brad Keselowski Ram
3.Ty DillonChevrolet
4.Matt Crafton Toyota
5.Timothy Peters Toyota

Johnny Sauter recovered from a pit road penalty to finish sixth, followed by Joey Coulter, Jason Leffler, Ron Hornaday and 19-year-old Kyle Larson, who was making his series debut.

Buescher drove the same No. 31 Chevrolet he drove to his first Truck victory at Kansas in April.

"I think this race especially -- both the Truck wins we have were won in the shop," Buescher said. "This is the third time I've raced this truck, the second time I've gone to Victory Lane with it. . . . The truck was phenomenal.

"We unloaded a little bit off and made some changes right away in practice this morning, and the truck came to life pretty good. We worked on it throughout practice, and I knew halfway through the first practice that we had a truck capable of running up front, possibly a truck capable of winning.

"Then, in the second practice, we found some more speed. I'm so excited to be able to get [sponsor] Exide Batteries to Victory Lane, to lead that many laps and dominate like that."

A three-car wreck on Lap 69, involving two-time series champ Todd Bodine, Lofton and last week's Nationwide Series winner Nelson Piquet Jr. put Lofton's points lead in peril.

With a strong run to the inside in Turn 1, Bodine dived beneath Lofton, broke loose and knocked Lofton's truck into the Chevrolet of Piquet, who slammed into the outside wall. Bodine blamed Lofton for not giving him enough room.

"I thought Justin was blowing up," Bodine said. "I caught him so fast -- I didn't know what was going on, if he got loose off of [Turn] 4 or what. I caught him so fast, thought he was blowing up, so I went under him, and, obviously, he wasn't blowing up. . . .

"He's got plenty of room outside -- he's got to learn to give some space here. When you get that close and that tight on somebody, you're just taking all their air, and there's absolutely nothing you can do about it."

Both Bodine and Piquet retired from the race at that point, but Lofton was able to continue. Taking a wave-around under the sixth caution -- called on lap 102 because of Tim George Jr.'s spin into the Turn 2 wall -- Lofton regained a lap lost during repairs to his truck and salvaged a 14th-place finish to limit his damage in the standings.

Dillon took the lead briefly with a two-tire pit stop under that caution, but Buescher regained the top spot moments after a restart on Lap 108. All told, Buescher led 119 of 150 laps.


• James Buescher earned his second Truck Series victory in his 80th start.
• James Buescher's last victory came three races ago, at Kansas in April.
• With the victory, James Buescher became the first repeat winner in eight races of 2012, but the 12th different winner in 14 Truck races at Kentucky.
• James Buescher became the youngest driver to win a Truck Series race at Kentucky -- 22 years, three months, two days.
• James Buescher led three times for 119 laps, including the final 43.
• Turner Motorsports earned its third Truck Series victory, all this season.
• Brad Keselowski (second) tied his career-best finish for the third time.
• Ty Dillon (third) has finished in the top 10 in the past 10 races; he started in the rear after an engine change.
• Matt Crafton (fourth) earned his third top-five finish of 2012; he's now sixth in points.
• Timothy Peters (fifth) picked up his fifth top-five in eight races; he regained the points lead by four over Justin Lofton and Dillon.
• Kyle Larson (10th) earned a top-10 finish in his Truck Series debut after starting in the rear for an engine change.
• Justin Lofton (14th) had his first finish outside the top 10 this season and he lost the points lead to Timothy Peters.
• Parker Kligerman (19th) had his worst finish of the season after finishing in the top 11 in each of the first seven races.
• The top four in points are separated by nine points.

Peters leaves Kentucky with a four-point lead over both Lofton and Dillon, with Buescher in fourth place, nine points back.