On Sunday evening, Kyle Busch fends off tough competition for a victory at WWT Raceway in the NASCAR Cup Series Enjoy Illinois 300.
After a short week of preparation, the NASCAR Cup Series returned to the Midwest for its second annual event at Worldwide Technology Raceway. It is a 1.25-mile speedway that features relatively flat corners. One side of the track has a tighter turn radius than the other which makes it a difficult track to set up for. Drivers expect a grueling race as they barrel down the long straights and hit the brakes hard lap after lap. Brake issues are common here, especially if the race has multiple green flag runs.
Kyle Busch Starts the Enjoy Illinois 300 on the Pole
Kyle Busch held the pole on Sunday’s race, to bring the field to the green flag. The race did not stay green as Tyler Reddick spun around on the second lap. The race then entered a weather delay with lightning in the area. Once the race resumed, Kyle Busch took off once more, and dominated the opening stage, leading 44 of the 45 laps to win the first stage.
A Quick Caution Opens the Second Stage
Ross Chastain washed up the track into Michael McDowell. This contact forced McDowell to spin around in the first turn. Kyle Busch had to fight off Ryan Blaney on the following restart and could not do so. Blaney moved into sole possession of the lead.
On lap 91, Carson Hocevar blew out his right front brake and slammed into the wall. The leaders came in the pit for service with Ryan Blaney winning the battle off pit road. Blaney led the final 37 laps to win the second stage.
William Byron Takes the Lead for the Third Stage
Tyler Reddick and William Byron controlled the restart heading into the final stage. William Byron had a solid restart on the bottom and was able to clear Reddick for the lead. After thirty laps of green flag racing, Tyler Reddick blew his right front tire and slammed into the wall in the second turn.
Kyle Larson moved into the lead on the restart, but it was Kyle Busch driving up from third to take the lead. There were four more cautions in the final forty laps. Noah Gragson and Bubba Wallace blew their brakes out. Gray Gaulding stalled out, and Austin Dillon wrecked alongside Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
Kyle Busch Fends Off Tough Competition for a Victory at WWT Raceway
All of these cautions forced Kyle Busch to fight off some tough competition on each restart. Tires were quickly fading with drivers trying to hang in there with Busch. On the final restart with two laps remaining, Kyle Busch promptly jumped out front to clear his competitors. No one else was able to make a bid for the lead and Kyle Busch cruised on with ease to win at Worldwide Technology Raceway.
Surely it was not going to come easy for Kyle Busch. Busch reached the lead with sixty laps remaining in the race where it seemed as if all hope was lost for the rest of the field. The race went on a decent long run where it looked like it could have had a slow ending. Once the first caution came out with Noah Gragson, the race became difficult for Kyle Busch and his team. The cautions came pouring in with countless restarts. However, Kyle Busch is a veteran and has performed to a high degree in these situations. He flawlessly executed each restart and was able to take home the win. It is his third win of the season and his team sits in great position heading into the summer.