Flat Tire Relegates Busch to 24th-Place Finish

Kyle Busch started from the pole and led 81 laps of the UNOH 200 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, but was relegated to a 24th-place finish after suffering a flat right rear tire while running third with 24 laps remaining. After lengthy time on pit road to get fresh right side tires and repair fender damage on the Dollar General Tundra, Busch returned to the track six laps down and ended the day with his first finish outside of the five in the Truck Series this season.

 

Busch earned his fourth pole of the 2014 season in Wednesday's knockout qualifying session, touring the .533-mile oval in15.392 seconds at 124.662 mph. After rain postponed the start of the race from Wednesday night to Thursday morning, Busch experienced a tight-handling Tundra for most of the 200-lap event. After leading the first 11 laps, the Las Vegas native got caught in lap traffic and Brad Keselowski was able to make a three-wide pass for the lead.

 

The Dollar General Tundra remained in the second spot when the field was slowed for a competition caution on lap 50. Crew chief Eric Phillips summoned his driver to pit road, where the over-the-wall crew administered a four-tire and fuel stop with an air pressure adjustment. Thanks to a quick stop, Busch was out front for the lap-57 restart.

 

Busch and Keselowski exchanged the lead twice over the next four laps before the No. 51 Tundra emerged from the side-by-side battle with the lead. As the race approached the halfway mark, the Dollar General Tundra navigated lap traffic quicker than the second-place truck and opened up its largest lead of the race.

 

The field was slowed for the third time on lap 112 for oil on the track. Busch brought his Toyota down pit road for four fresh tires, with another air pressure adjustment, and a full tank of fuel and once again returned to the track out front.

 

The race went back green on lap 118 and after holding off a strong challenge from Keselowski for several laps, Busch fell back to second on lap 125. The Dollar General Tundra remained in the runner-up spot when the field was slowed for the fourth and final time for a multi-truck accident on lap 147. On the ensuing restart, Darrell Wallace Jr. was able to work his way around his team owner for the second position. With a long green-flag run ensuing, the No. 51 team remained in the third spot until experiencing a right rear flat on lap 176.

 

Keselowski went on to pick up his first career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victory in his 62nd start. Wallace Jr. finished 0.776 seconds behind him in the runner-up position. Ron Hornaday Jr., Matt Crafton and Johnny Sauter rounded out the top-five finishers.

 

 

The 13th race of the 2014 season featured four cautions for a total of 27 laps. There were five lead changes among two drivers. The No. 51 fell to fourth in the Owner's point standings and are currently 20 points behind the series leading No. 98 team. 

 

Erik Jones returns to the wheel of the No. 51 ToyotaCare Tundra when the Truck Series resumes action at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ont. on Sunday, Aug. 31. Live coverage of the 67-lap road-course event north of the border will air live on Fox Sports 1 beginning with the Truck Series Setup Show at 1 p.m. ET.

 

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