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Kyle Busch clocks the field at Martinsville Speedway
- Updated: April 3, 2016
By Jerry Jordan — For the first time his career, Kyle Busch picked up a win at Martinsville Speedway and took home his first grandfather clock – the coveted trophy given to all NASCAR race winners at the iconic paperclip-shaped short track in Martinsville, Va.
“We just haven’t never necessarily had all the pieces go together like they should have and I didn’t know that the pieces we’re going to go together today either the way all them cautions were kind of playing out, the way tire strategy was playing out, when to pit, when not to pit, how to do all of that,” Busch said, after winning the Alpha Energy 250 Camping World Truck Series race. “Wes (Ward, crew chief) and I we both leaned on each other and we both had no idea, so we just dumbed into this I think, but it all worked out, so this Toyota Tundra was awesome. All the guys at KBM (Kyle Busch Motorsports), KBM chassis, NOS, TRD (Toyota Racing Development), Joe Gibbs Racing Engines – appreciate them – Camping World of course, the fans – it’s neat to win here at Martinsville. I love when they do it up here on the front stretch for everyone to be up close and personal.”
Throughout the race, Bush has great restarts and was able to hold-off challenges from pretty much everyone. He gives credit to the guys in the shop, who set-up the trucks and give him good equipment, adding that it’s a team effort.
“We had some pretty good turn through the center of the corner, but we had really good launch up off the corner and we fought that a little bit actually earlier in the race,” Busch said. “That’s why those were better than us early on, but the couple adjustments that Wes (Ward, crew chief) made on pit road were really good for us. This Tundra was awesome, so again I just can’t say enough about everyone KBM (Kyle Busch Motorsports).
“It’s not just racing and it’s not just running around there and being with all the competitors. It’s a matter of every single element, so it just kind of came to us. I’ve obviously got some really good guys at the shop too. They give us some good transmissions ratios that work well and the things that we can do there in order to make sure that we do have those good restarts, so I got really good launches today and even in getting there on the last one seemed to be pretty good.”
His rookie driver, William Byron, finished the race in third behind John Hunter Nemecheck, who is still looking for full-time sponsorship despite winning the second race of the season at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
“I was able to hang tough on the outside, get around William there at the end,” Nemechek said. “That was the big key for us to finish second — if not we were probably going to lose a couple spots.
“Those restarts were hectic at the end. I just kept spinning the tires on the restarts. We’ve got to go back and look at some things. I could never get to Kyle.”
For Busch, he happy to win but as team-owner of KBM, he’s also proud of the efforts by his drivers.
“This is a fourth effort. It’s hard for us to get this thing to come out here,” Busch said. “It’s obviously a great opportunity for me and for the team to continue to showcase we’ve got great stuff and that it’s a matter of time before William and Christopher (Bell) will be in victory lane too, so good run for the Liberty University Tundra. The JBL truck I saw had trouble. ARRIS truck I think had trouble and looking forward to seeing the JEGS truck back on the track next week.”
Bell has had tough breaks all season long having not finished a race, yet. At Daytona, he flipped, at least, times in a late-race crash and was taken to an area hospital for evaluation. He was released later that night with a clean bill of health. Then, at Atlanta, he slammed head-on into the outside wall.
As for what Busch plans to do with the grandfather clock, he said that isn’t up to him.
“I’m sure my wife (Samantha Busch) will figure it out, but I’ve got a couple owner’s ones, but never one of my own, so this is just a day that we’ve been looking for a long, long time,” he said.