Austin Dillon comments on his effort to catch Hornaday and James Buescher recaps his night in Kentucky .
Erik Jones, Christopher Bell and Daniel Suarez looking for win When the Kyle Busch Motorsports haulers rolls up to Kentucky Speedway on Thursday, it will arrive with trucks that will be driven by a trio of talented young drivers. Erik Jones , 19, Christopher Bell, 20, and Daniel Suarez , 23, will try to capture the second consecutive KBM win in the Bluegrass State in Thursday’s UNOH 225 (7:30 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 1, MRN, SiriusXM). Team owner Kyle Busch took the checkered flag in last season’s event, leading a race-high 91 laps on his way to Victory Lane. Jones enters the race coming off his first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series win of the season at Iowa. He has never competed in a NASCAR event at Kentucky , but finished sixth at an ARCA race there in 2013. "Should be fun, Kentucky is a cool place with a lot of character," Jones said. "It's getting rougher and I haven’t been there in a few years so it should be pretty good and rough now." Jones' crew chief Randy Fugle added, "We finally put it all together and collected our first win. Now, we need to go out and get five or six more." Fresh off his NCWTS debut at Iowa where he finished fifth, Bell will make his first start at an intermediate track. The dirt standout is transitioning to stock cars and has already won four races in KBM's Super Late Model. "Obviously the top-five run at Iowa was awesome, so anything less is going to be a letdown, but we need to go there with realistic expectations of me never running at a track that size," Bell said. "First I need to finish the race, but also continue to be competitive as I gain more experience in these Tundras." Suarez seems closer and closer to getting his first NASCAR national series win every time he straps into the No. 51 truck. He finished second in his last two NCWTS races, at Texas and Dover. " Kentucky Speedway is a fun, interesting track that is really fast," Suarez said. "I'm excited about it, especially since I'm also competing in the NASCAR XFINITY Series race there. Running both events will help me figure the track out quicker and will hopefully lead to two positive results." FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Ben Kennedy involved in spectacular wreck with five laps remaining RELATED: Complete NCWTS results " Updated standings SPARTA, Ky. -- In a race that ended five laps short of its scheduled distance, polesitter Matt Crafton was declared the winner of Thursday night’s UNOH 225 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series event after Ben Kennedy ’s Toyota damaged the catchfence at Kentucky Speedway beyond the track’s capacity to repair it expeditiously. With a shove from the Ford of Ryan Blaney , Crafton had taken the lead on Lap 145 moments before Kennedy was launched into the fence from contact with David Gilliland ’s Ford. The victory was the fourth of the season for the two-time defending series champion, who won for the first time at Kentucky and the ninth time in his career. The race was slowed for the seventh time on Lap 140, when contact from the No. 05 Chevrolet of John Wes Townley sent the No. 23 Silverado of Spencer Gallagher hard into the outside wall. NASCAR red-flagged the proceedings for 3 minutes, 28 seconds for track clean-up, leaving Jones in the lead for a restart on Lap 145. But Gallagher's wreck was nothing compared with the jolt Kennedy took on the restart lap after contact with Gilliland's Ford sent Kennedy's Toyota to the top of the SAFER barrier and into the catchfence. "I thought I was clear," Kennedy said on his radio. The driver of the No. 11 Tundra had moved up the track into Gilliland's Ford after being cleared by his spotter. "I heard 'Clear' on the radio, so I moved up to the wall and as soon as I went to the wall," Kennedy said after leaving the infield care center. "I guess Gilliland had a run on the outside and pretty much hit me in the right rear -- and I went up. "I guess I was on top of the wall. I remember being on top of the wall for quite some time. I didn't see much -- just a bunch of dust and debris flying. Then came down. The ride from the wall to the ground was pretty hard. But I’m OK. "Thank God for everything that NASCAR has done to keep this sport safe. 'Cause for me to get out of my car on my own power after a hit like that is pretty incredible." Blaney finished third, followed by Daniel Suarez and Timothy Peters . Two support poles in the catchfence had to be replaced, a process that would consume 90 minutes. Accordingly, NASCAR called the race with five laps left. It was the second straight race in one of NASCAR’s top three touring series in which a car has hit the fence protecting the grandstands. In last Sunday's Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup Series at Daytona International Speedway, Austin Dillon 's Chevrolet was launched into the fence during a last-lap wreck in the tri-oval. Erik Jones finished second, followed by Ryan Blaney , Daniel Suarez and Timothy Peters . FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
See where every driver will pit at 7:30 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1 RELATED: Full starting lineup When the Camping World Truck Series Keystone Light Pole Qualifying was cancled due to rain at Kentucky Speedway, the first 26 drivers in the field for Thursday's UNOH 225 (7:30 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1) were set by owner's points. Two-time Truck Series champion Matt Crafton claims the pole for Thursday night's race and also claimed the first pit stall off pit road with an open pit box in front of him. Tyler Reddick , driver of the No. 19 Ford, lines up second and chose the 14th pit stall with two empty pit boxes in front of him. Ray Black Jr ., who is lining up 15th, chose the first stall onto pit road with an open box behind his stall. FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
SPARTA, Ky. -- Coming to Kentucky Speedway is a homecoming of sorts for Louisville, Kentucky native Ben Rhodes . It's so much of one that there will be a big contingent of supporters -- the size of say, one's high school -- for the young driver in the stands. "I know we will have a lot of people in the stands coming out," Rhodes said during a media availability ahead of Saturday's NASCAR XFINITY Series VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). "I actually have my old high school coming, friends, family." In total, Rhodes estimated he will have roughly a 6,000-fan strong support section. Rhodes graduated from Holy Cross High School in May, although he missed that ceremony to make his XFINITY Series debut at Iowa Speedway . That finish, a seventh-place result, is his best this season. And while he hasn't yet run a NASCAR event at Kentucky , he did race in the ARCA Racing Series event last year and he hopes to pull from that previous experience at the 1.5-mile oval. The year as a whole has been quite the learning experience for Rhodes, who is piloting the JR Motorsports No. 88 Chevrolet this weekend. The 18-year-old has been soaking up information like a sponge from everyone around him. He has spent time on spotters' stands watching races and also picked the brain of JRM co-owner and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series star Dale Earnhardt Jr . Rhodes described meeting Dale Jr. as "very surreal at first because I've watched this guy on TV. I think everybody has if you are a fan of racing. "When I got to first meet him, it was overwhelming, but then I got to sit down and talk to him. I remember the first race I was at with Dale. We were just talking and we had about an hour talk, just kind of welcoming me into the family, the team. That was really cool for me because I have never associated or been around anyone in the Sprint Cup ranks before. So that was really neat. He has been very open with his knowledge, sharing everything and making sure I am picking everything up correctly." And driving the JRM No. 88 "All-Star" car as Earnhardt has described it in the past, can be a daunting task when the drivers include NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stars Earnhardt, Kevin Harvick and Kasey Kahne . "I feel the pressure when I am in it because of the other performances they've had," Rhodes said. The Kentucky race will mark his eighth start of the 2015 XFINITY Series season. Rhodes is also slated to be in the field next weekend at Dover International Speedway and in the season-finale event at Homestead-Miami Speedway . With each time out, Rhodes is looking to make strides. "The goal for the whole season has just been consistent top 10 finishes. We haven't got those consistently. We have some top-10 finishes, but not consistent. A top-10 finish would be great, but man, I'd love to get a win for the hometown crowd. That'd be great. I told Mr. Mark Simendinger ( Kentucky Speedway 's general manager) we might want to get the fire extinguishers ready. The crowd might go crazy." Competing in a NASCAR event here is a dream come true for Rhodes and a victory would potentially render the driver speechless. "I rode past this place when I was seven, eight years old going to go-kart races and didn't quite understand what it was about at the time but I dreamed about racing here. I did it last year in the ARCA race, but to do it in NASCAR, with a huge crowd, would be awesome. I don't know if there's words to describe it."
RELATED: Practice 2 results SPARTA, Ky. -- Rain ended Friday's on-track activity early for the NASCAR XFINITY Series at Kentucky Speedway . Final practice was set to run from 6 p.m. to 7:25 p.m. ET, but a red flag for wet weather came out around 30 minutes in with NASCAR calling it shortly thereafter. At the time of the stoppage, Drew Herring (175.959 mph) was at the top of the speed chart. Herring is practicing and qualifying the No. 54 Toyota for Erik Jones and Joe Gibbs Racing at Kentucky . Jones will be in the No. 54 for the VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 (Saturday, 8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) Ryan Blaney (175.661 mph) and Daniel Suarez (175.593 mph) were in the top three in the final practice session. Brian Scott topped the opening practice with a speed of 178.159 mph, followed by his RCR teammates of Ty Dillon (177.439 mph) and Brandon Jones (177.194 mph). Chris Buescher enters this weekend's race with a 25-point lead on Dillon and a 28-point lead on defending series champion Chase Elliott in the driver championship standings. Brendan Gaughan is the defending race winner. The VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 is the final standalone of the 2015 XFINITY Series schedule. XFINITY Coors Light Pole Qualifying is scheduled for Saturday afternoon at 4:45 p.m. ET (NBCSN/Live Extra) with the VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 scheduled for 8 p.m. ET. Brad Keselowski won the July XFINITY Series race at Kentucky in the No. 22 Team Penske Ford. That car will be driven this weekend by Ryan Blaney , who won this race in 2013 for his first career XFINITY Series win. It has been a rainy NASCAR season for the 1.5-mile oval track as much of the NASCAR tripleheader schedule in July was washed out by rain. All three national series races were run at their scheduled times, but most practice and qualifying sessions were rained out. RELATED: Practice 1 results Brian Scott topped the leaderboard during the final minutes of opening NASCAR XFINITY Series practice at Kentucky Speedway . In the series' final stand-alone event of the year, Scott had a fastest lap of 178.159 mph in his No. 2 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet. Scott's RCR teammate, Ty Dillon , was right behind him, wheeling his No. 3 Chevrolet around the 1.5-mile track with a fastest lap of 177.439 mph. Next was Brandon Jones , who finished with the third-fastest lap (177.194 mph) after topping the leaderboard for much of the first session. Ryan Blaney (176.840 mph) and Daniel Suarez (176.811 mph) were fourth and fifth, respectively. Defending race winner Brendan Gaughan was ninth-fastest, pulling a fastest lap of 175.279 mph.
RELATED: Full qualifying results Daniel Suarez topped the leaderboard during Saturday's NASCAR XFINITY Series qualifying at Kentucky Speedway and earned his third Coors Light pole of the season. Suarez covered the 1.5-mile track with a fast lap of 179.856 mph. Joining Suarez on the front row for the Saturday night race will be the No. 2 Chevrolet of Brian Scott who posted a fast lap of 178.855 mph. Scott has been strong all weekend as he was the fastest amongst his competition during both of Friday's practice sessions. Rounding out the top three on the qualifying leaderboard was Regan Smith , who wheeled his No. 7 Chevrolet around the track with a third-fastest lap of 178.719 mph. The No. 3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet of Ty Dillon (178.353 mpn) and the No. 22 Team Penske Ford of Ryan Blaney (177.895) were fourth and fifth, respectively. The defending race winner, Brendan Gaughan , was sixth-fastest at 177.760 mph in his No. 62 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet. On-track action picks back up at Kentucky for the NASCAR XFINITY Series' VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 (200 laps, 300 miles) at 8 p.m. on NBCSN/Live Extra.
RELATED: Full race results SPARTA, Ky. -- Some mid-race contact in the NASCAR XFINITY Series VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 led to some post-race fireworks at Kentucky Speedway for Brian Scott and Darrell Wallace Jr . On pit road, moments after the race ended, Scott went over to Wallace's parked car on pit road to have an exchange of words that appeared to get physical with the Richard Childress Racing driver pushing and shoving a still-seated Wallace before being separated by a NASCAR official. After being separated, Scott went back for some more heated words with Wallace before walking away and back to his car. "We got a restart and the 6, he drove down into me." Scott said on pit road. "I never felt like he even gave me a chance to get in the corner. He loosened my right rear wheel and it ruined our day. Really unfortunate. Such a fast car. "We're racing for wins, so we don't have to worry about points and stuff and that puts us in position to race those guys aggressively if that's how they're going to race." Scott's anger stemmed from an incident on a Lap 128 restart where the two made contact and dropped him from out of the top 10 and eventually forced him to pit under a green flag, going a lap down on Lap 143. Scott led 45 laps and ended up with a 13th-place finish but remains in search of his first XFINITY Series win. RCR, as a whole, had a solid day with three cars in the top six. "I think we showed as a company we're really dominant," Scott said. "I felt good about our Shore Lodge Chevrolet. Extremely good out front. We struggled with it in dirty air. "We just kind of kept having restarts and red flags, and the race wasn't really going smoothly, and that didn’t really play into our favor." Wallace didn't really address the incident much, prefering to focus on his Roush Fenway Racing No. 6 Ford's run that resulted in a ninth-place finish for his 11th top-10 finish of the season. "I don't even know if we got together on pit road," Wallace told NBCSN. "We come home ninth, another top 10, so that's good. Just not what we were expecting all day. Our Bleacher Report Mustang wasn't what we had in practice. It was a kind of, a totally different animal. That's what produces here at Kentucky . Great racing all around. "Just a bummer we didn't run better. We were expecting better than what we did. I tried to do some pit strategy but it hurt us in the long run, but we'll go to Dover, where really good and have some fun." Asked for side of the incident, Wallace simply said, "that was -- that was early in the race." After the race, Wallace and Scott both shared their sides on Twitter. Some say the interview was bad..apologies! Hard to gather the brains when ya get blindsided by him, his wife..and bus driver.. Anybody else? — Darrell Wallace Jr (@BubbaWallace) September 27, 2015 Well @BubbaWallace when your so classless that you call my wife the C word you should be ready for something to happen... — Brian Scott (@bscottracing) September 27, 2015 Both drivers will be back in action at Dover International Speedway for the Hisense 200 (Oct. 3, NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).
Joey Gase and Jimmy Means Racing suffered heartbreak after Saturday night's VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 at Kentucky Speedway as the team's hauler caught fire on the way home, sustaining serious damage. A crew member was injured while trying to help firefighters, according to the team's post on Facebook about the incident. The team also posted a video on Facebook surveying the damage to the hauler. Along with the video is this summary of the incident and damage: "Unfortunately our trip back home didn't go as well as the race did for us last weekend. The teams transporter caught on fire about 80 miles from the shop & is completely ruined. Everything on our pit box (computers, seats, etc) are all destroyed as well. We haven't been able to get the cars down yet (one we are hoping to use this weekend in Dover) but we are hoping for just smoke damage." Gase later tweeted out pictures of the damage. Pics of the the car from @KySpeedway , we are going to try to get it cleaned up for this weekend in @MonsterMile pic.twitter.com/PxZKIvGPSz — Joey Gase Racing (@JoeyGaseRacing) September 29, 2015 Here are some pics of our the hauler, back up motor, and the pit box pic.twitter.com/LYxH1jXZhS — Joey Gase Racing (@JoeyGaseRacing) September 29, 2015 Well I don't think the car is very white anymore BUT she will be ready to go this weekend at @MonsterMile ! pic.twitter.com/7iVDm0Rlps — Joey Gase Racing (@JoeyGaseRacing) September 29, 2015 We have a Phoenix rising from the ashes for the race this weekend at @MonsterMile ! @Donors1 #LifeCell pic.twitter.com/aPwJ3205ic — Joey Gase Racing (@JoeyGaseRacing) September 30, 2015 Gase finished 21st at Kentucky and is 21st in the NASCAR XFINITY Series standings.
RELATED: Race results " Updated standings SPARTA, Ky. – Ryan Blaney would not be denied Saturday night at Kentucky Speedway . In fact, Blaney may owe a pushing Regan Smith dinner after a green-white-checkered restart proved to be the saving grace for the driver of the No. 22 Discount Tire Ford Mustang, who won his second NASCAR XFINITY Series win of the season in Saturday night's VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 . Blaney appeared to be heading towards Victory Lane, but an attack from Ty Dillon on a restart with eight laps to go sent him from first to third. Then, a caution waved with four laps remaining and reset the field into overtime. "We were just even with the 3 (Dillon), and the 7 (Smith) gave us a good push [on the final restart]," said Blaney who captured his fourth career XFINITY Series win. "Luckily we were able to get a good [push] and just get a little bit of position on the 3 to kind of use up the race track and get in front of him. I knew once we were clear we had a really good shot at it. "A great Discount Tire Ford Mustang. We were great all night. It was just a matter getting up the front. Clean air was so important." As for the next-to-last restart, which saw Blaney's winning chances temporarily fall, momentum worked against him. " Kentucky is such a great race track because you can see three or four wide racing in the first corner and as the leader you have to protect and I didn't know where the 7 (Smith) was going, he kind of faked me out going to the top and that was able to open up the middle and it just lost all of our momentum," Blaney said. For Dillon, he was frustrated with his runner-up performance. "First of all, I am disappointed for second, and that's a good thing," Dillon said. "I'm proud to be sitting here saying that. Earlier this year, we didn't have that opportunity to say that very often. Man, it hurts when you've got a big lead with four to go - I don't even know what the caution was for - but, that's a stinger." Just before halfway Brennan Poole spun in Turn 1 collecting Harrison Rhodes and spewing liquid from Poole's car putting the field under the red flag for cleanup. The race was halted for 18 minutes and 27 seconds, with the field returning to idle conditions and the race resuming with 95 laps remaining. Brandon Jones grabbed the lead on a busy restart and held it through the next caution. With rain in the area, Jones stayed out, while others pitted. MORE: Poole spins and get slammed When racing resumed, Jones controlled the field for 16 laps until Blaney made the pass to retake the lead on Lap 128 and through green flag pit stops, set the tone for the finish of the final standalone race of the season. Chris Buescher , who finished seventh, now leads Dillon by 19 points in the standings with six races remaining. Chase Elliott , who finished fourth, is third, 25 points out.