Richmond, VA (SportsNetwork.com) – Kurt Busch led 291 of 400 laps to win
Sunday’s Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond International Raceway, a race delayed
one day because of rain.
It’s the most laps Busch has led in a single Sprint Cup Series race. He beat
second-place finisher Kevin Harvick, his teammate at Stewart-Haas Racing, to
the finish line by 0.75 seconds for his 26th career win in NASCAR’s top series
but his first since March 2014 at Martinsville (35 races ago). It was also the
second time Busch has won a Sprint Cup event at Richmond. He took the
checkered flag at this 0.75-mile oval in September 2005.
Busch became the seventh different driver to win a race this season and
therefore virtually guarantee himself a spot in the Chase for the Sprint Cup
Harvick, the defending series champion, has finished either first or second in
10 of the last 12 races.
Jimmie Johnson placed third, while Jamie McMurray and Joey Logano, the pole
sitter, rounded out the top-five. Logano, who won the spring race at Richmond
one year ago, led the first 94 laps before Busch took command.
Busch, the driver of the No. 41 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet and 2004 Cup
champion, missed the first three races this season when NASCAR placed him on
suspension for domestic violence allegations. NASCAR reinstated him before the
March 15 event at Phoenix following a decision by the Delaware Attorney
General to not file criminal charges against him. Busch also complied with all
requirements set forth by NASCAR in its reinstatement program.
Though he missed three races, NASCAR had granted Busch a waiver to make him
eligible for the Chase.