Busch bounces back from penalty to dominate Miami Trucks

There was no stopping Kyle Busch in Saturday night’s 25th Annual Baptist Health 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, no matter what was thrown at him.

Busch bounces back from penalty to dominate Miami Trucks

Busch had to start from the rear and take a drive-through penalty on the opening lap due to an L1 penalty in pre-race technical. He explained: "The deal with the infraction was just a fluke deal, it was a bar that was legal here last year but not legal this year, and it hadn't been back to the fab shop."

Despite brushing the wall on his first run, Busch returned to imperious form in stage two, storming from ninth to first in a handful of laps.

Busch fired off swiftly at the start of the final stage, heading Ross Chastain and Austin Hill, as Christian Eckes almost wrecked off Turn 2 and slipped to the bottom of the top 10.

Chase Elliott was on the move, grabbing fifth place just before a caution for Brennan Poole spinning at Turn 2.

Busch led Hill at the restart, with Chastain slipping to third. Elliott hit the wall while running seventh and fell outside the top 10. Stewart Friesen moved up to fourth, but then fell back behind Ben Rhodes and Grant Enfinger.

Green flag pitstops among the leaders, and a yellow flag with 30 laps to go when Korbin Forrister hit the wall, put a different complexion on the race. The cleanup was delayed when Sheldon Creed pounded the barrels at the pit entry, so the red flag flew.

Elliott stayed out to save a set of tires, and restarted in the lead. “I’ve driven into the wall about four times,” said Elliott under the red flag. “Hopefully we get another caution to give us a chance win later.”

After a 15-minute delay, Elliott and Eckes led the field to the line with 24 laps to go. Elliott went backwards as Busch toyed with Eckes for a lap before going on his merry way to victory. Rhodes, Hill and Chastain all passed Eckes, prompting a three-way battle for best driver who wasn’t Busch. Rhodes slipped back after suffering a big slide off Turn 4, as Hill pulled away from Chastain.

The caution flew again when Jordan Anderson hit the wall, setting up a sprint to the finish. All the leaders pitted, with Elliott getting the chance to put his final set of fresh tires as the others had to settle for already-scrubbed rubber.

The green flew with seven laps to go, with Busch pulling clear as Hill and Chastain swapped second again. Tyler Ankrum was also on new tires, and surged up to second, with Chastain being forced to settle for third, ahead of a late surging Elliott, Johnny Sauter, Todd Gilliland, the fading Hill and Eckes.

Stage 2

Busch won the second stage following a remarkable march to the front, swerving through the pack and getting the job done in style.

Eckes led at the start, having pitted before the end of stage 1, but the man to watch was Busch, who restarted ninth but pulled an amazing slingshot move off Turn 2 to sweep around those ahead, and was past Eckes to take the lead nine laps later.

Hill and Chastain renewed their battle, this time for second, as lightning lit up the Florida sky and weather threatened.

Chastain finished second, 5s behind Busch, with Hill, Eckes and Gilliland rounding out the top five.

Stage 1

Chastain won the first stage, metronomically working his way forward from 15th on the grid.

Hill led Enfinger and Creed early on, with Chastain moving up to third from his eighth row starting spot by the competition caution on Lap 15.

At the restart, Chastain surged past Enfinger to run second, as a multi-truck wreck off Turn 4 involved Zane Smith, who clipped Chase Elliott into a huge spin and Brett Moffitt got collected in the process.

Despite Hill’s best attempts to block, Chastain and Hill ran side by side as they began the final lap, with Chastain winning out from a fast-finishing Rhodes and Hill.

Busch served his pass-through penalty at the end of the opening lap, but avoided going a lap down. He was back in during the competition caution, however, for attention to his right-rear quarter panel having hit the wall, and ended the opening stage back in 33rd position.

Cla # Driver Manufacturer Laps Time Laps Led
1 51 United States Kyle Busch Toyota 134   82
2 26 United States Tyler Ankrum Chevrolet 134 2.847  
3 44 United States Ross Chastain Chevrolet 134 3.357 2
4 24 United States Chase Elliott Chevrolet 134 3.596 3
5 13 United States Johnny Sauter Ford 134 3.663  
6 38 United States Todd Gilliland Ford 134 3.943  
7 16 United States Austin Hill Toyota 134 5.175 29
8 18 United States Christian Eckes Toyota 134 5.311 17
9 88 United States Matt Crafton Ford 134 6.736 1
10 45 United States Ty Majeski Chevrolet 134 7.031  
11 4 Canada Raphael Lessard Toyota 134 7.240  
12 15 United States Tanner Gray Ford 134 7.558  
13 11 United States Spencer Davis Toyota 134 7.793  
14 52 United States Stewart Friesen Toyota 134 7.838  
15 19 United States Derek Kraus Toyota 134 8.059  
16 22 United States Austin Wayne Self Chevrolet 134 8.276  
17 98 United States Grant Enfinger Ford 134 9.945  
18 99 United States Ben Rhodes Ford 134 10.424  
19 30 United States Brennan Poole Toyota 134 14.688  
20 2 United States Sheldon Creed Chevrolet 134 15.781  
21 04 Cory Roper Ford 134 16.025  
22 20 United States Spencer Boyd Chevrolet 134 16.038  
23 02 Tate Fogleman Chevrolet 134 16.155  
24 00 United States Angela Ruch Toyota 134 28.306  
25 56 Tyler Hill Chevrolet 133 1 lap  
26 33 United States Gray Gaulding Toyota 133 1 lap  
27 10 United States Jennifer Jo Cobb Chevrolet 132 2 laps  
28 9 Codie Rohrbaugh Chevrolet 132 2 laps  
29 49 United States Ray Ciccarelli Chevrolet 131 3 laps  
30 68 Clay Greenfield Toyota 122 12 laps  
31 3 United States Jordan Anderson Chevrolet 120 14 laps  
32 55 Dawson Cram Chevrolet 111 23 laps  
33 7 United States Korbin Forrister Toyota 95 39 laps  
34 6 United States Norm Benning Chevrolet 89 45 laps  
35 40 TJ Bell Chevrolet 70 64 laps  
36 23 United States Brett Moffitt Chevrolet 20 114 laps  
37 21 Zane Smith Chevrolet 19 115 laps  
38 34 Bryant Barnhill Toyota 1 133 laps  
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