Bristol Trifecta for Busch


Joe Gibbs Racing's Kyle Busch completed a unique weekend sweep Saturday at Bristol Motor Speedway, winning the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race for his third victory there in four days. (Photo: Getty Images)


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Joe Gibbs Racing's Kyle Busch completed a unique weekend sweep Saturday at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, winning the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race for his third victory there in four days.

Busch won Wednesday's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race, followed with another Xfinity Series victory on Friday and capped the weekend by winning Saturday night's Monster Energy Series race.

It was the second time he completed the Bristol three-peat, turning the same trick in 2010.

Rookie Erik Jones finished second with Denny Hamlin, Matt Kenseth and Kurt Busch completing the top five.

"Man, Erik Jones put up a whale of a fight," said Busch, who scored his 40th career Cup Series win and second this season. "That was all I had. I was running with my tongue hanging out. My arms were jello and my throat hurts, but that’s awesome."

Jones started from the pole and had his best career finish.

"We raced hard all night and led a lot of laps," he said. "We did almost everything we needed to do. I wish we had a little bit more. It’s a bummer."

Ryan Newman, Trevor Bayne, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Larson and Ryan Blaney filled spots 6-10.

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series takes next weekend off before returning to action on Sunday, Sept.3, for the Bojangles' Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway.

How Busch Won: He was simply not going to be denied Saturday night. He got by Jones with 56 laps to go and despite having to navigate his way through traffic while Jones was in hot pursuit, Busch never was really in jeopardy of giving up the top spot once he had it and cruised to a relatively easy checkered flag.

Who Had a Good Day: Jones not only had his best career finish in second, he led a race-high 260 laps (READ MORE) ... Hamlin has finished fourth or better in seven of the last 10 races this season ... Kenseth rebounded from a speeding penalty to get his fifth top-10 finish in the last six races of 2017 ... Bayne has finished in the top 10 in the last two races and scored only his fourth top-10 finish of the year.

Who Had a Bad Day: Austin Dillon and Jeffrey Earnhardt were involved in an early crash and both were knocked out of the race ... Aric Almirola also had trouble and was credited with a 37th-place finish ... Brad Keselowski was not competitive and finished 29th .. Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s final Bristol night race was very uncompetitive and he finished 23rd.

What Else Happened: The application of the PJ1 substance provided an opportunity for drivers to use an inside groove as well as the high side of the racetrack. The closing laps saw both Busch and Jones try both options to get the best line around the track. Overall, the racing was tight and competitive with the ends of both opening stages providing exciting finishes.

Quotable: "I am who I am." - Kyle Busch in Victory Lane after getting showered with boos from a number of fans in the grandstands.

Notable: Busch scored his 20th Bristol win across NASCAR's three national series ... Kurt Busch made his 600th Cup Series start (READ MORE) ... Martin Truex Jr. finished 21st and failed to clinch the regular-season championship (READ MORE).

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