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Kyle Busch grabs 1st win of season at Sonoma

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Kyle Busch passed Jimmie Johnson with five laps to go and held off Kurt Busch and Clint Bowyer for a much-needed victory, his first since breaking his right leg and left foot in a bad crash at Daytona International Speedway. Kyle restarted seventh when the race went back to green with eight laps to go because of Casey Mears broken axle.

Busch got past Bowyer three turns after the restart when Bowyer made contact with Matt Kenseth. Johnson, who did not pit during the final caution, was no match for drivers on new tires. Kevin Harvick was fourth followed by Joey Logano and Johnson, Johnson dominated a good chunk of the race but dropped down to sixth after the final restart.

NASCAR granted Busch a waiver upon his return that made him Chase eligible should he qualify. However Busch will still need to finish top 30 in points inorder to lock up a spot in the Chase for the Sprint Championship.Busch sits 136 points behind 30th-place Cole Whitt with 10 races remaining before the Chase field is set.

“Now I don’t have to bust my butt and overdrive the car every week in order to get wins,” Busch said. “Now I can just concentrate on running top-three, top-five, top-eight — just getting those finishes and points.

READ:  Kyle Busch punches his ticket to round two, after winning from the back

“If we can do that, the points have got to come and fall on the line.”

Tony Stewart had a very good opportunity for his first top-five finish of the season but a poor pit stop during the final caution dropped him deep into the field

With 30 laps to go, Carl Edwards hit a curb and appeared to lose control of his car, making contact with David Ragan and sending both into the concrete wall. Allmendinger had to spend significant time in the garage after he experienced problems with his fuel cell just past the halfway point of the race

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