Kyle Busch completed another NASCAR weekend sweep for Joe Gibbs Racing with a win in today’s Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The win was Busch’s first Sprint Cup Series victory at the famed Speedway and also gave Toyota its first victory there. Toyota has now won a Sprint Cup Series race at every track on the current NASCAR circuit.
Meanwhile teammates Denny Hamlin, Matt Kenseth, and Carl Edwards also had strong runs racing in the top ten for the majority of the afternoon before finishing fifth, seventh and 13th respectively.
Busch has now won three consecutive races and four out of the last five. He is now just 23 points out of 30th-place in the standings which he needs in order to secure his spot in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship.
Even more incredible is that for the second consecutive weekend Joe Gibbs Racing swept everything in both the XFINITY and Sprint Cup Series. JGR started Saturday off by qualifying all three of their XFINITY Series cars 1, 2, 3 and Kyle Busch then won the race from the pole. Carl Edwards earned the Sprint Cup Series pole for the second consecutive week and then Busch capped it all off with another win this afternoon.
Kyle Busch started the No. 18 Skittles Toyota from the ninth position and showed speed early as he quickly moved into the top five on the opening green flag run. He was running third on lap 40 following the first round of pit stops. A variety of pit strategies shuffled the field and the No. 18 was running 10th at the halfway mark. He would lead on lap 86 during a round of green flag stops. He would give up the lead on the next caution to come to pit road but it didn’t hurt his track position all that much as Busch utilized a great restart to jump into fourth which is where he ran at lap 100. He would run fifth at lap 114. A caution with 40 laps to go brought the majority of lead lap cars down pit road and Busch was the first off allowing him to restart fifth behind only those that made the call to stay out. Crew chief Adam Stevens would make the call to remain on the track following a caution with 20 laps to go leaving the Skittles Camry to restart third with 14 to go. Busch would gain one spot on the restart and then grabbed the lead away from Kevin Harvick on lap 153. He would have to withstand a flurry of late cautions and ensuing restarts that led to two green-white-checkered attempts, but he once again rose to the occasion and claimed his first Brickyard 400 victory.
Denny Hamlin started the No. 11 FedEx Express Toyota from the 17th position and was able to drive his way into the top 15 to run 11th on the opening green flag run of the race. He would run 14th on lap 40 following the first round of pit stops. A variety of pit strategies shuffled the field over the next portion of the race and Hamlin was running 19th at the halfway point. A caution would bring him down pit road and he would put the No.11 FedEx Camry back inside the top 10 at lap 100. Another caution on lap 107 put Hamlin seventh for a restart on lap 111. A caution with 40 laps remaining brought most of the leaders down pit road and he restarted 11th. Hamlin was running seventh with 25 laps to go. Crew chief Dave Rogers made the call to remain out on the track following a caution with 20 laps to go and Hamlin lined up sixth for the restart with 14 laps remaining. He would move into fifth and managed to hold that spot through a flurry of late cautions.
Matt Kenseth started the No. 20 Dollar General Toyota in the 23rd position and was able to drive his way into the top 15 over the course of the opening green flag run. He would run ninth following the first round of green flag pit stops. A variety of pit strategies shuffled the field and Kenseth was running 12th at the halfway point. Kenseth would use a great restart to run third at lap 100. A caution on lap 107 would allow Kenseth to restart third on lap 111. A caution with 40 laps to go brought most of the lead lap cars down pit road and the Dollar General Camry lined up 13th for the restart. Kenseth would run ninth with 25 laps to go. He would pit for four tires and fuel following a caution with 20 laps remaining and lined up 14th for the restart with 14 laps remaining. He would gain four spots before another caution came out just a lap later. A series of late cautions would allow Kenseth to advance back into the top ten and he would finish in seventh.
Carl Edwards started the No. 19 STANLEY Toyota on the pole and settled into second on the opening lap but then re-established himself at the front of the field on lap 12. He would lead the next 20 laps. A variety of pit strategies played out over the next portion of the race and Edwards was running fourth at the halfway point. Edwards would use a great restart to run second at lap 100. Another caution on lap 107 would allow Edwards to restart second on lap 111. A caution with 40 laps to go brought the majority of leaders back down pit road and the No. 19 STANLEY Camry lined up eighth for the restart. He would run third with 25 laps remaining. Crew chief Darian Grubb would make the call to remain out on the track when a caution came out with 20 laps to go and Edwards restarted second with 14 laps remaining. Edwards would get loose while racing the 22 for second place on the restart and the two made contact causing the 19 to fall back in the field. A caution followed a lap later and the STANLEY Camry would hit pit road for fresh tires. A series of late restarts would allow Edwards to race his way back into the top 15 and earn a 13th-place finish.
Kyle Busch captured the win and was followed by Joey Logano, Kevin Harvick, Martin Truex, Jr. and Hamlin rounded out the top five. There were nine cautions on the afternoon for a total of 36 laps and 16 lead changes among six different drivers.
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will head to Pocono Raceway next Sunday, August 2. NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) will provide live coverage starting at 1 PM ET (race scheduled to start at 1:30 PM ET).