Archive for Sunday, April 4, 2004

Kenseth claims Busch victory

Polesitter Busch takes second in O’Reilly 300

April 4, 2004

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— Matt Kenseth took the lead from Bobby Hamilton Jr. just before a caution flag with six laps left, and went on to win the NASCAR Busch series race Saturday at Texas Motor Speedway.

As Kenseth was passing under Hamilton in the third turn on the 195th lap, Tracy Hines spun out on the frontstretch, taking out Kasey Kahne.

By time the caution came out and the field was frozen, Kenseth had completed the pass in his Ford. NASCAR reviewed replays to confirm the pass that gave Kenseth his first lead in the O'Reilly 300.

After a red flag, Kenseth was strong on the restart with three laps left and went on to his 15th Busch victory. His average speed was 126.865 mph, and he finished ahead of polesitter Kyle Busch in a Chevrolet.

"I had a really pushing car all day, I'm surprised we won it," said Kenseth, who took a Cup race at Texas two years ago. "It's always cool to win in Texas."

Kenseth, in his third Busch race this season, is the defending Nextel Cup champion and current points leader with two wins. He starts 25th today in the Samsung/RadioShack 500 on the 11/2-mile track where no driver has ever completed a weekend sweep.

Busch, the 18-year-old brother of Cup driver Kurt Busch, led 147 laps in his third runner-up finish in 13 career starts. Robby Gordon was third. Two of Kyle Busch's runner-up finishes have been behind Kenseth.

"This team is awesome. It's just a matter of time before things come together and we win that first one," Busch said. "I tried to catch up with Kenseth, but you just can't make up that amount of gap in that short time."

Hamilton had an engine glitch on the restart after the red flag and slipped to fifth, behind the Dodge of Johnny Benson.

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