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Kyle Busch is flatout amazing....and finally gets his first win at hometown Las Vegas Motor Speedway


Kyle Busch gets his first Sprint Cup win of the season (Photo: Getty Images for NASCAR)


   By Mike Mulhern

   The most talented driver in NASCAR? Jeff Gordon says there's no question, it's Kyle Busch.
   And Busch made believers of this hometown crowd of 130,000 (just shy of a sellout), with a charge from the rear of the field to win Sunday's Shelby 427.
   It was Busch's first win here, and he had to come from the rear of the field, after breaking an engine in practice Friday. Richard Childress' two-some Clint Bowyer and Jeff Burton followed Busch across the line.
   Busch's two key challengers, Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson, had bad pit stops late and took themselves out of contention. Johnson then spun and crashed with six laps to go when he hit some speedy-dry.
  Carl Edwards, last year's winner here, was running fourth when his engine blew with two laps to go. That was car owner Jack Roush's third blown engine of the warm, sunny afternoon at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Bobby Labonte, the newest member of the Roush-Yates operation, finished fifth.
   Goodyear's new tires worked fine. Driver had complained about hard tires last season here, but this time drivers were able to go three-wide at will. Saturday's Nationwide tire problems were blamed on a dirty track, with numerous cuts.
   Talk about ironies: Gordon and teammate Johnson, battling each other for position, were trying to make routine green flag pit stops late in the four-hour race. Gordon, trailing Johnson, couldn't slow enough to make it on to pit road; he slid the tires trying to get slowed down, and he blew the left-front. Johnson, on the other hand, made it to pit road but then overshot his pits by a few feet and had to be pushed back into his pit box.
   However, when Gordon's tire blew, that brought out the yellow – so Gordon, though now with a damaged fender, got to make his pit stop under caution, while Johnson was trapped a lap down.
   Johnson did make his lap back up and got back to 10th. And Gordon managed to get back as high as fifth, before settling for sixth. Johnson wound up 24th.
   The record 12th caution (followed by a record 13th, and then a record 14th) came out with 20 laps to go, while Busch was leading Bobby Labonte.  The leaders pitted, leaving Bowyer, who gambled for track position by not pitting, in the lead, just ahead of teammate Burton, who stopped briefly for fuel only, for the restart on lap 263 of the 287.
   But Busch would not be denied, and he regained the lead with 16 laps to go, radioing his crew "Good night, Gracie."

  Kyle Busch celebrates his first Las Vegas tour win, and his first Cup win since Watkins Glen last summer (Photo: Getty Images for NASCAR)



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