SPARTA, Ky. – Austin Dillon absolutely dominated Friday evening’s Feed the Children 300 at Kentucky Speedway to notch his first NASCAR Nationwide Series victory.
Dillon started from the pole and was the class of the field, leading 192 of the 200 laps and beating Kurt Busch to the finish line by 9.828 seconds at the 1.5-mile asphalt oval.
“I’m really proud to get these guys in victory lane. This is awesome,” said Dillon, who now also leads the NASCAR Nationwide Series point standings. “This is what we wanted. That was domination. It was awesome, the car was great.”
Just one year after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series title, Dillon has proven he is now a legitimate contender to win the NASCAR Nationwide Series championship during his rookie season.
Richard Childress, Dillon’s grandfather and team owner, was clearly beaming with pride after watching his grandson drive the No. 3 Chevrolet into victory lane.
“I’m so proud to see it,” said Childress. “It was really a good run for everybody, I couldn’t be prouder.”
However, in Dillon’s No. 3 Chevrolet failed post-race inspection, the rear-end of his car coming in too low. The team will likely be penalized early next week.
Busch ended up second despite the engine in his No. 54 Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota souring in the final laps.
“It just felt like somebody pulled the hand brake and it (the engine) was a different noise inside the car,” said Busch, referring the engine issues late in the race. “The Monster Energy Camry was dialed in at the end, but yet we were still in the wrong zip code. Austin Dillon was fast tonight. Congratulations to him and Richard Childress, they were money.
“You’ve got to get that car perfect and we weren’t perfect tonight,” Busch added.
Kevin Harvick brought his No. 33 Chevrolet home in third. Michael Annett finished fourth to notch the first top-five finish of his NASCAR Nationwide Series career. Justin Allgaier completed the top five. Sam Hornish, Jr., Brad Keselowski and Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. finished sixth through eighth and were the final cars on the lead lap.
Elliott Sadler and James Buescher completed the top 10.
Dillon leads the NASCAR Nationwide Series standings by two points over teammate Elliott Sadler.