DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Matt Kenseth used a big push from James Buescher during the final restart to claim his first NASCAR Nationwide Series victory of 2013 Friday evening at Daytona Int’l Speedway.
Kenseth ran near the front for much of the evening during the Subway Firecracker 250, but the race was dominated by the Penske Racing duo of Sam Hornish Jr. and Joey Logano. It took several late-race caution flags to even up the playing field and allow Kenseth to take his shot at victory.
The battle at the front really began when the caution flag waved with 11 laps left when Mike Wallace’s car stalled between turns three and four. Kenseth restarted in the race lead with Buescher right behind him, but the rest of the field was all over them as the laps clicked off.
As the field was coming out of turn four on lap 95 the first and only crash of the night was sparked when Travis Pastrana made contact with Cole Whitt. The resulting mayhem took out the cars of Pastrana, Jamie Dick, Robert Richardson Jr., Jeffrey Earnhardt and Jason White.
After a nearly 10 minute red flag period for clean-up, the field lined back up for the first of a possible three attempts at a green-white-checkered restart. Kenseth was still the leader, with Austin Dillon to his outside and his drafting partner Buescher directly behind him in third.
When the green flag waved Kenseth and Buescher looked like they were shot out of a rocket as they quickly pulled away from the massive pack behind them. With nearly a half second separating Kenseth and Buescher from the rest of the field, it became clear as they drove under the white flag that the race for the victory would be between them.