Delayed a day because of rain, the Lucas Oil 225 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill., finally took the green flag on Saturday night, and once it did, Kyle Busch put on a performance that saw him go from back to front twice before leading a race high 66 laps en route to the win. Matt Crafton finished second, Austin Dillon was third, Tyler Reddick fourth, and Jeb Burton fifth.
“It was a great race for us tonight, and this Tundra was awesome,” Busch said.
With Friday’s qualifying session also rained out, Johnny Sauter started on the pole after posting the fastest lap time in practice. Meanwhile, Busch started in the back after having Erik Jones practice his truck.
As Sauter ran up front, Busch made his way through the field. He was in the top-10 by lap 11. By lap 25, he was in the top-five. By the time Busch moved into the top-five, Dillon had taken the lead from Sauter.
Busch was up to third and running two miles per hour faster than the competition when the yellow flag waved for a competition caution on lap 30. But during the caution, Busch was sent to the back of the field, again, for speeding on pit road.
“Early on, I was patient with it,” Busch said. “I knew we had a good truck. I just paced myself early.”
Reddick, meanwhile, restarted in the top spot after getting off pit road first by taking only two tires. Ryan Blaney took the lead on the restart, though, and then Crafton moved into the lead on lap 41.
Busch’s teammate soon moved into the front position, and by that time Busch was back up to second. Busch then took his first lead of the race on lap 53. That first time up front was short-lived, though, as Wallace regained the lead on lap 59, as Busch reported an overheating problem.
Busch retook the lead from his teammate on a restart that followed a caution on lap 61. As Busch ran up front, Crafton and Dillon each spent time in the second spot. Dillon wound up with the lead after a restart that followed a cycle of green-flag stops that was interrupted by a caution in the final 50 laps. Busch and Dillon were among those who had already pitted by the time the yellow flag waved, but Busch spent extra time on pit road when his crew had a problem getting his truck full of fuel.
Busch took the lead for the final time on lap 134, and Crafton followed him through to second.
“We finished second to the damn 51 again,” Crafton said. “All in all, it was a good race.”
With the runner-up finish, Crafton took the championship points lead from Sauter, who finished 14th. Sauter headed into Chicagoland with a seven-point lead over Crafton. After Chicagoland, Crafton was five points up on Sauter.
Finishing sixth through 10th were Wallace, Ben Kennedy, Joey Coulter, Joe Nemechek and Bryan Silas.