Dominating Finish in ISM Connect 300 in Loudon

Last week the Monster Energy Cup Series began the playoffs in Chicago. This week they travel to New Hampshire for the ISM Connect 300.

1200px-5_Hour_Energy_DSC_0305_(19706401289)By Yzukerman from Wayland, MA, USA – DSC_0305, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=60348835

When qualifying began on Friday afternoon, there were 10 cars still in line for NASCAR inspection including Jimmie Johnson and Chase Elliott with backup cars after crashes during practice.

Joey Logano’s team had to make four trips through the inspection process and did not make a qualifying run. He will start the race in last place.

After three rounds of qualifying Kyle Busch wins the pole and will bring the field down for the green flag.

The starting lineup for the ISM Connect 300:
Kyle Busch
Kyle Larson
Denny Hamlin
Ryan Blaney
Martin Truex Jr
Kevin Harvick
Kurt Busch
Erik Jones
Kasey Kahne
Matt Kenseth
Jamie McMurray
Jimmie Johnson
Brad Keselowski
Chase Elliott
Dale Earnhardt Jr
Clint Bowyer
Austin Dillon
Ryan Newman
Paul Menard
AJ Allmendinger
David Ragan
Chris Buescher – moved to the back of the field after a transmission change
Trevor Bayne
Ricky Stenhouse Jr
Daniel Suarez
Matt DiBenedetto
Danica Patrick
Landon Cassill – moved to the back of the field
Aric Almirola
Ty Dillon – moved to the back of the field in a backup car
Michael McDowell
Cole Whitt
Corey LaJoie
Gray Gaulding
Reed Sorenson
Brett Moffitt
Jeffrey Earnhardt
Cody Ware
Joey Logano

Stages one and two of the race are 75 laps each with stage three lasting 150 laps for a total of 300 laps around the one mile track.

On the hottest day in Loudon racing history, Kyle Busch brings the field down for the green flag start of the race and edges out Kyle Larson for the lead of the race as drivers get three wide behind him.

Lap four Kyle Busch has pulled out to a lead of nearly a second on Ryan Blaney.

Lap 10 Kyle Busch continues to lead the race with a second over Ryan Blaney.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr scrapes the wall but the track stays green. Coming down pit road, Stenhouse was charged with a commitment cone violation.

Lap 14 Kyle Busch now has a lead of nearly a second and a half over Ryan Blaney.

Lap 20 Kyle Busch continues to lead the race but Martin Truex Jr has taken over the second spot a second behind.

Lap 23 Kyle Busch in front followed by Martin Truex Jr, Ryan Blaney, and Denny Hamlin rounding out the top four. There are 36 cars on the lead lap.

Lap 27 Kyle Busch has a lead of half a second on Martin Truex Jr.

Lap 28 Martin Truex Jr has caught Kyle Busch and is challenging for the lead.

Lap 30 Martin Truex Jr battles Kyle Busch for the lead but so far Busch has been able to hold him off.

Lap 40 Martin Truex Jr is still battling Kyle Busch for the lead and on lap 41 finally passes Kyle Busch for the lead of the race.

Lap 43 there are 30 cars on the lead lap.

Lap 48 Martin Truex Jr has pulled out to a one second lead on Kyle Busch.

Lap 58 Martin Truex Jr holds his lead of nearly a second and a half on Kyle Busch.

The air temperature is 88 degrees with in car temperatures reaching 140 degrees.

Lap 61 there are 25 cars on the lead lap.

Lap 64 Martin Truex Jr’s lead is now two and a half seconds over Kyle Larson.

Lap 69 Martin Truex Jr has a lead of over two seconds on Kyle Larson. A number of drivers are reporting heat issues – with themselves and with the cars overheating. There are 22 cars on the lead lap.

Martin Truex Jr wins stage one for his 19th stage win this season and 59th playoff point.

878px-TSM350_-_2015_-_Martin_Truex_Jr._-_1_-_StierchBy Sarah Stierch – Own work, CC BY 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=41336482

The top 10 at the end of stage one:
Martin Truex Jr
Kyle Larson
Kyle Busch
Erik Jones
Ryan Blaney
Matt Kenseth
Brad Keselowski
Jimmie Johnson
Denny Hamlin
Kevin Harvick

Martin Truex Jr wins the race off of pit road with Kyle Busch in second.

Martin Truex Jr brings the field down for the green flag start of stage two and holds on to the lead.

Lap 87 Martin Truex Jr has a lead of just over half a second on Kyle Busch with Kyle Larson in third.

Lap 92 Martin Truex Jr maintains his lead of just over half a second on Kyle Busch.

Lap 103 Martin Truex Jr continues to lead the race with Kyle Busch in second less than a second behind.

Lap 110 the top five are Martin Truex Jr, Kyle Busch, Kyle Larson, Matt Kenseth, and Brad Keselowski.

Lap 119 Martin Truex Jr’s lead is down to less than a second over Kyle Busch. There are 23 cars on the lead lap.

Lap 124 Kyle Busch has closed to half a second behind Martin Truex Jr.

Lap 129 Kyle Busch challenges Martin Truex Jr the lead.

Ty Dillon was black flagged with a window net issue and had to come down pit road. The crew serviced the car while it was on pit road.

Lap 138 Martin Truex Jr’s lead is back up to over half a second on Kyle Busch.

Jimmie Johnson and Denny Hamlin are beating and banging for the seventh spot.

Lap 143 there are 21 cars on the lead lap. Martin Truex Jr has a one second lead on Kyle Busch.

With only one lap remaining in the stage, there is a big crash on the back stretch involving several of the Chase drivers.

Kevin Harvick, Kurt Busch, Jeffrey Earnhardt, Martin Truex Jr, Austin Dillon, Danica Patrick, Denny Hamlin and Dale Earnhardt Jr are all involved.

Kyle Busch escapes the melee and goes on to win stage two under the caution flag.

Kyle_Busch-2(1)By Pam J. – originally posted to Flickr as Kyle Busch, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=4176304

NASCAR displays the red flag so that they can get the track cleared and cleaned up.

Once NASCAR has cleaned the track, the cars are again moving under yellow flag conditions.

Kyle Busch wins the race off of pit road.

Kyle Bush brings the field down for the green flag start of stage three with Kyle Busch taking the lead of the race and Erik Jones in second.

Lap 163 Kyle Busch has a half second lead over Erik Jones with Matt Kenseth in third.

After being involved in the big crash and restarting the race in 18th place, Martin Truex Jr has moved up to 14th place on lap 167. Matt Kenseth has passed Erik Jones to take second place.

Denny Hamlin is reporting a vibration.

Lap 169 Denny Hamlin brings his car down pit road to address the vibration.

Lap 178 Kyle Busch has a lead of nearly two seconds on Matt Kenseth.

NBC reports reveal that Denny Hamlin did indeed have some loose lug nuts.

Lap 184 Martin Truex Jr has moved up to eleventh place.

Austin Dillon is having issues with his radio.

Lap 188 Matt Kenseth has closed the gap to Kyle Busch to less than a second.

Lap 191 Kyle Busch’s lead is back up to over a second on Matt Kenseth.

Lap 201 Kyle Busch continues to lead the race with Matt Kenseth in second.

Lap 215 Kyle Busch has a lead of just under a second on Matt Kenseth with 17 cars on the lead lap.

With 91 laps remaining in the race Kyle Busch continues to lead the race followed by Matt Kenseth, Erik Jones, Kyle Larson, and Brad Keselowski.

Dale Earnhardt has some car and tire issues and has to bring his car down pit road for fresh tires and repairs.

With 83 laps remaining in the race Kyle Busch has a one second lead on Matt Kenseth.

The caution comes out with 81 laps to go for debris on the track. Austin Dillon is the “lucky dog”. Teams can come down pit road for service and make it to the end of the race.

Kyle Busch wins the race off of pit road with Kyle Larson is second.

Kyle Busch brings the field down for the green flag restart with 75 laps remaining in the race. Kyle Larson challenges Kyle Busch for the lead but cannot complete the pass.

Sixty six laps to go and Kyle Busch has pulled out to a lead of over two seconds on Matt Kenseth.

With 63 laps to go Kyle Busch has increased his lead to nearly three seconds on Matt Kenseth with Kyle Larson in third.

There are 54 laps remaining in the race and Kyle Busch has a lead of nearly two and a half seconds on Matt Kenseth.

Fifty to go, with 17 cars on the lead lap, Kyle Busch has a lead of over three seconds on Matt Kenseth.

Forty five to go and Kyle Busch has increased his lead to nearly four seconds over Matt Kenseth.

Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr have dominated today’s race with Kyle Larson leading only one lap.

Forty to go and Kyle Busch’s lead over three and a half seconds.

Kasey Kahne stops on the race track and brings out the caution flag with 38 laps remaining in the race. He gets his car down pit road with a reported tire issue.

Taking only two tires, Martin Truex Jr wins the race off of pit road with Kyle Busch in second.

Kasey Kahne was held on pit road for purposely bringing out the caution flag.

Kyle Busch and Clint Bowyer bring the field down for the green flag restart with 28 laps to go. Kyle Busch gets out in front of the field for the lead with Martin Truex Jr in second; but the caution comes out when Trevor Bayne gets into the wall.

Kyle Busch brings the field down for the green flag restart with 23 laps to go. Kyle Larson challenges Kyle Busch for the lead but Kyle Busch holds him of. Martin Truex Jr is in third.

Twenty to go and Kyle Busch has pulled out to a half second lead on Kyle Larson.

Seventeen to go, Kyle Busch has increased his lead to over a second on Kyle Larson.

Ten to go, Kyle Busch as a secon and a half lead on Kyle Larson.

Only four laps to go and Kyle Busch has pulled out to a lead of over two seconds on Kyle Larson.

Kyle Busch takes the white flag.

Kyle Busch wins the ISM Connect 300!

718px-TSM_-_Kyle_Busch_-_2015_-_Stierch_-_08By Sarah Stierch – Own work, CC BY 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=41336076

Busch joins Martin Truex Jr as the first two drivers in the round of 12.

The unofficial results for the ISM Connect 300:
Kyle Busch
Kyle Larson
Matt Kenseth
Brad Keselowski
Martin Truex Jr
Erik Jones
Clint Bowyer
Daniel Suarez
Ryan Blaney
Joey Logano
Chase Elliott
Denny Hamlin
Ryan Newman
Jimmie Johnson
Ricky Stenhouse Jr
Jamie McMurray
AJ Allmendinger
Danica Patrick
Austin Dillon
Paul Menard
Chris Beuscher
Ty Dillon
Michael McDowell
Trevor Bayne
Landon Cassill
Aric Almirola
Corey LaJoie
Reed Sorenson
David Ragan
Cole Whitt
Matt DiBenedetto
Brett Moffitt
Gray Gaulding
Dale Earnhardt Jr
Kasey Kahne
Kevin Harvick
Kurt Busch
Jeffrey EArnhardt
Cody Ware


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