NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Nationwide Series Breakdown: 2009 Kroger 200 at IRP

After Saturday night’s race, even I am willing to put aside the fact that yet again the Nationwide Series ended a race with a 1-2 dose of Carl Edwards and Kyle Busch (though this time, Edwards came out on top). Why? Without a doubt, the Kroger 200 was the most exciting race of the 2009 …

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Nationwide Series Breakdown: 2009 Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers 250 at Gateway

On a rare weekend where the Nationwide Series was the only show in town, Cup regulars were nonetheless the story all night long… though a different face did most of the dominating. With announcements swirling that he would be doing more Nationwide driving in his own No. 33 car next season, Kevin Harvick led over …

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Nationwide Series Breakdown: 2009 Dollar General 300 at Chicagoland

It’s amazing what a driver can do when Goodyear brings rock-hard tires to the track. In a scenario reminiscent of that seen at the Cup race in Charlotte last October, where Jeff Burton managed to hold off a hard-charging Jimmie Johnson despite having nearly 40-lap older tires, Joey Logano and Jason Leffler stayed out under …

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Nationwide Series Breakdown: 2009 Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona

Friday night’s race at Daytona was shaping up to be a tremendous finish, until a messy wreck on lap 96 stopped the battle at the front of the field and scattered debris and rescue equipment all over the 2.5-mile oval. In their infinite wisdom, NASCAR chose not to red flag the race – instead settling …

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Nationwide Series Breakdown: 2009 Camping World RV Sales 200 at Loudon

Sometimes, going faster and winning all comes down to going a bit slower. Whether or not that was Kyle Busch’s strategy doesn’t matter… because it worked. In a performance far departed from his stretch of eight consecutive Nationwide races leading the most laps, Busch started ninth on Saturday… and stayed there for a while. But …

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Nationwide Series Breakdown: 2009 NorthernTool.com 250 at Milwaukee

Déjà vu. Last year, Carl Edwards shook off a disastrous run at Kentucky and a weak start to his defense of the 2007 Nationwide title with a breakthrough win at the Milwaukee Mile. That’s exactly what happened on Saturday night, again. Edwards, who stalked the race leaders for much of the event, finally got past …

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Nationwide Series Breakdown: 2009 Meijer 300 at Kentucky

Finally, someone has Kyle Busch’s number. And it’s his teammate. Running his first Nationwide Series race since an incident that saw him knock Busch from the lead at Dover with two laps to go, Joey Logano beat his teammate without the chrome horn on Saturday… and took the checkers for his trouble. On a late …

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Nationwide Series Breakdown: 2009 Federated Auto Parts 300 at Nashville

For the sixth week in a row, Kyle Busch was the dominant car in a Nationwide Series race. That’s it, no tricks to this story. His pit crew perfect, his laps fast, his nose clean, Busch led 173 of the 225 laps run Saturday night to score his long overdue fourth win of the Nationwide Series season. While Busch’s race was clean, his unorthodox celebration was far from it (read on to hear this writer’s take).

Nationwide Series Breakdown: 2009 Heluva Good! 200 at Dover

For 198 laps, it was business as usual for Kyle Busch and Joe Gibbs Racing, as the No. 18 and No. 20 Toyotas put an absolute smackdown on the NNS field – combining to lead 195 laps and holding the top-two spots when the race’s final green flag restarted the event with two laps to …

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Nationwide Series Breakdown: 2009 CARQUEST 300 at Charlotte

A Nationwide Series regular went to Victory Lane for the first time in 2009. It only took a lucky caution…and a lot of help from Mother Nature…to finally make it happen.

The only car left on the lead lap waiting to pit before green flag pit stops cycled through, Mike Bliss got a lucky break that instantly absolved all the bad luck his Phoenix Racing team has endured this season on Lap 153, when Kevin Hamlin’s contact with the turn 4 wall brought out a yellow that trapped literally the entire field (sans lucky dog Brendan Gaughan) at least one lap behind his No. 1 car. Restarting in traffic behind the 11 cars that started in front of him on the tail end of the lead lap, Bliss methodically worked through traffic and kept out of trouble until rain started falling on the track at Lap 170. Though NASCAR and track crews worked feverishly to prepare the track, the jet dryers reported having lost the track, and Bliss ended up in Victory Lane.

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