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Saturday, November 26, 2022

NASCAR: Kyle Busch trend continues due to disqualification

With Zane Smith’s disqualification from Friday night’s NASCAR Truck Series race, Kyle Busch continued a trend that goes back to the 2020 season.

Kyle Busch Motorsports’ Chandler Smith won Friday night’s Victoria’s Voice Foundation 200, the second race on the 2022 NASCAR Truck Series schedule.

He held off Front Row Motorsports’ Zane Smith, who won the season-opening NextEra Energy 250 at Daytona International Speedway two weeks ago, to take the checkered flag for the third time in his career — and in the last seven races.

Chandler Smith’s boss, Kyle Busch himself, finished in third place.

However, Zane Smith ended up being disqualified, as his #38 Ford failed post-race inspection since it was found to not conform to rule book specifications on lug nuts. As a result, he was dropped to last place (36th), and Busch was promoted to second.

This disqualification allowed Busch to continue a trend that dates back to the 2020 season.

He has not finished behind a truck he doesn’t own since finishing in 21st place at Atlanta Motor Speedway in June 2020.

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Since then, he is on an eight-race streak of beating all non-Kyle Busch Motorsports trucks in the field. He won at Homestead-Miami Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway in 2020, and he won at Atlanta Motor Speedway and Kansas Speedway in 2021.

He did record three runner-up finishes in 2021 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Richmond Raceway, and Pocono Raceway, but all came behind John Hunter Nemechek, who drives the #4 Toyota for the team.

Prior to that poor result at Atlanta Motor Speedway two seasons ago, he had only twice finished behind a non-Kyle Busch Motorsports truck in his last 11 races going back to 2018. This 11-race span also ironically started after a 21st place finish at Atlanta Motor Speedway, that one coming in February 2018.

Those two instances occurred when he finished in second place behind GMS Racing’s Johnny Sauter at Charlotte Motor Speedway in May 2018, leading to one of his more memorable frustration interviews, and when he finished in second behind GMS Racing’s Chase Elliott at the same track in May 2020. 2020.

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During that 11-race span, he finished in second place behind Kyle Busch Motorsports’ Noah Gragson in 2018, and he won at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Pocono Raceway.

He then went five for five in 2019, winning at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Martinsville Speedway, Texas Motor Speedway and Charlotte Motor Speedway. To start the 2020 season, he won at Las Vegas Motor Speedway before the unexpected hiatus caused by COVID-19-related restrictions.

Busch is scheduled to make his next Truck Series start at Circuit of the Americas in the XPEL 225 on Saturday, March 26. This race is set to be broadcast live on Fox Sports 1 beginning at 1:00 pm ET.

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