Winner’s Weekend: Kyle Busch – Loudon

Kyle Busch and crew chief Adam Stevens recap the strategy that brought them to Victory Lane in the ISM Connect 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

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ANNOUNCER 1: Kyle Busch always has something in his back pocket. A top qualifier all year long. Seven times he's been the fastest qualifier, and he just might have put up a lap like he did at Chicago where everybody goes like, well, that's it for us. We're not going to start first on Sunday.

- The mindset for this weekend was as it is every other weekend, just come out here, do our jobs, execute, and make sure that we hit on all eight cylinders. And I felt like we did that this weekend, and we were able to show that in our practice speeds and our qualifying speeds.

ANNOUNCER 1: Kyle Busch, once again, is going to start first on Sunday.

- Getting the pole, especially here at Loudon, is just huge. There's such an advantage to the first pit stall, having that clean exit all day, and really giving your guys a chance to get the car out first without having to work too hard.

ANNOUNCER 2: This is race number two of three in round one.

ANNOUNCER 3: They've got to race not only aggressively, but smart. Otherwise this first round is going to be very short for them.

ANNOUNCER 4: Kyle Busch gets a great, great start. He will lead the field, including Kyle Larson, into turn one.

- I think there were a couple unknowns, just the track temperature and the heat of the day was certainly way hotter here than it typically is in September. With the hotter temperatures, we seemed to run better in the July races here for the 18 car.

ANNOUNCER 5: Kyle Busch has already starting the lapping cars parade. He's made short work of Cody Ware and Jeffrey Earnhardt.

- First stage of the race was uh, was really, really on edge for us. You know, our car wasn't, wasn't great. We got out there a ways and kind of led early, but then those guys kind of ran us down, and showed their long run speed and their longevity that they had.

ANNOUNCER 6: Kyle Busch gets a little out of the groove. That's going to open up the door. Here comes the 78 on the bottom.

ANNOUNCER 7: Truex, the new leader.

ANNOUNCER 8: And you can give stage one to Martin Truex, Jr.

ANNOUNCER 7: Kyle Larson will finish second in stage one. Kyle Busch third.

KYLE BUSCH: I need a lot of help here, man.

ADAM STEVENS: 10-4. You just need grip, or you need to be tighter?

KYLE BUSCH: I need grip, and I definitely need to be tighter. Just need to last longer.

- Start of the race just a little bit off on balance. I probably overdid the race changes just a touch for the track conditions.

ADAM STEVENS: And you know, we were able to come in the pit stop after the first stage, get those tires off, make some air pressure adjustments, some chassis adjustments, and went back after it after that.

ANNOUNCER 8: Martin Truex, Jr. as the green flag waves gets out of there in a hurry. But now drawing up to his inside, it's Kyle Busch.

- Being able to hang with the 78 in that second stage gave us a lot of confidence, and being able to show that we have the speed that he has. And there were a couple of moments there where I try to make a pass, but I was so late in the game that our car was getting a little bit tight there on that long run, so I was just kind of biding my time, and just trying not to hurt the tires too much.

ANNOUNCER 9: It's Truex. Two laps to go in stage number two.

ANNOUNCER 10: Turn two, we got a car sideways.

TONY HIRSCHMAN: Got one spinning on the bottom. He's mid-track. Ease up. Ease up. Ease up. Ease up! Keep coming on the wall. Come on the wall. OK. Come on through. There's enough room there, right?

KYLE BUSCH: Whoo! By an inch. We were heading for a second place finish in that second stage, and you know, it was going to focus on what adjustments we needed to get going on after that, but coming off turn two, there's just a cloud of smoke. I mean there's just smoke everywhere. You couldn't see anything.

ANNOUNCER 11: That will give the stage two win to Kyle Busch, who sees the green checkered and the yellow flag right now.

TONY HIRSCHMAN: See if Martin has any damage.

ADAM STEVENS: Yeah, he definitely got his left rear corner panel. Man, that was bizarre, huh?

TONY HIRSCHMAN: Yeah, it was weird.

ANNOUNCER 12: Kyle Busch gets a great restart.

ADAM STEVENS: Don't let that damn 77 sneak up on us here.

ANNOUNCER 11: Busch stretches it out to about two car lengths.

KYLE BUSCH: I feel like we're behind in an adjustment. Whatever we did on the last one didn't really do anything.

ADAM STEVENS: 10-4. The track seemed like it was changing bigger in magnitude than the changes we were making.

KYLE BUSCH: I think we need to free it back up. I think we overstepped what was going on with the tires.

ADAM STEVENS: I'm sure we'll get a couple more cautions.

ANNOUNCER 12: Despite all the tire wear, Kyle Busch, he is running some of his fastest laps today. And he is absolutely flying.

TONY HIRSCHMAN: The five's stopped up top at four. Still stopped. Yellow, yellow, yellow. Five, four, three, two, one, right here.

ADAM STEVENS: Go. That's two tires out there.

ANNOUNCER 12: Well look at this. The two tire stop Martin Truex, Jr. wins the race off pit road. Kyle Busch was second.

KYLE BUSCH: I had some concern with the 78 with two, just whether or not I was going to be able to get the lead. You would think four tires would prevail over two tires, but for as good as they are, sometimes it doesn't always work that way.

ANNOUNCER 12: Green flag waves. Martin Truex, Jr. Gets a push from Kyle Larson, but he's even with Kyle Busch. Headed to one.

KYLE BUSCH: Through one and two I just hit my marks. I was lucky that I was in front of him when the next caution flew, which was right away.

TONY HIRSCHMAN: Outside wall here in two. Yellow.

ANNOUNCER 12: Fans are on their feet. We're ready to rock and roll.

TONY HIRSCHMAN: Stay in line. Truex on you tight.

ANNOUNCER 12: Truex tried his best to hang on to Kyle Busch.

TONY HIRSCHMAN: Three at Truex. Spinning behind you off of two.

KYLE BUSCH: Sometimes it does mess with your rhythm. Just with all the cautions that keep coming, and can kind of take you off your game a little bit. For me, though, I just kind of kept focused on what we had been doing all day that was helping me be successful.

ANNOUNCER 12: Kyle Larson is right on the bumper of Kyle Busch.

TONY HIRSCHMAN: Inside he's there. No momentum. Clear.

ANNOUNCER 12: Larson doing everything he can to try to catch Kyle Busch.

KYLE BUSCH: And I thought Larson there behind me was-- was-- was keeping up with me pretty well, but fortunately, I could just inch on him a little bit each lap. And that was just kind of giving me that vote of confidence of being able to drive away.

TONY HIRSCHMAN: Checkered flag. Good job, bro!

ANNOUNCER 12: Kyle Busch has made a spot in play off round number two.

KYLE BUSCH: Yeah! Way to go, team!

ADAM STEVENS: Way to hang with it, driver. Up here, guys. Give it to me!

ADAM STEVENS: You know, going to victory lane in this sport is really difficult to do. To gain six more bonus points on the field and be able to take those with us really improves our chances to get the Homestead.

KYLE BUSCH: If we would have been in front of the 78, maybe we would have been in that crash. Who knows? But overall, it was good for us to be able to give our M&M's caramel team a shot in the arm with going to victory lane here in a chase race.

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