Kyle Busch Wins Mountain Dew 250 fueled by Fred’s With Helping Hand From Aric Almirola
The biggest treat for Kyle Busch on Halloween was having a teammate on his rear bumper as he headed toward the finish line.
Busch used a huge push from Billy Ballew Motorsports teammate Aric Almirola to pass Todd Bodine coming out of Turn 4 of the final lap and win the Mountain Dew 250 fueled by Fred’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Talladega Superspeedway.
Almirola finished second while Bodine, who had won the past two Truck Series races at Talladega Superspeedway and four consecutive races at restrictor-plate tracks, had to settle for third.
“I owe everything to Aric Almirola sticking behind me like that,” Busch said. “Aric did an awesome job. I knew if we could just stay together, they wouldn’t be able to beat us. Two trucks can always beat a single truck. He did an awesome job sticking with us and being a team player.”
The victory came in the 300th career start for Billy Ballew Motorsports and marked the first time the team has had a one-two finish. Almirola said he was happy for his owner, but disappointed that he was not the one celebrating the victory.
“I’m disappointed,” Almirola said. “I wanted it to be a one-two finish, but I wanted to be the one some kind of bad. I’m not complaining about finishing second. But I really wanted to go to Victory Lane.”
With one lap to go, it did not appear either Busch or Almirola would win the race. Bodine motored past both drivers with ease coming out of Turn 4 and appeared to be in command as he took the white flag.
“I thought we were going to be all right,” Bodine said. “It’s the same truck we won the last four (plate races) with. It drove great.”
Even Busch said he thought his shot at victory had slipped away following Bodine’s pass.
“I was very surprised. I didn’t think we had it,” Busch said. “Todd was very, very fast and had a deserving shot at winning the race.”
But that changed in the final seconds, as Almirola pulled in tight behind Busch entering the trioval and pushed his teammate to the 21st and final lead change of the race.
“Aric is a smart driver and a great teammate. He did the right thing for his team,” Bodine said. “If it wasn’t for him, Kyle wouldn’t have won. But that’s racing. That’s part of the game. Aric didn’t have a shot to win, so at that point he did the next best thing, which was help his teammate win.
“I’m definitely disappointed, but it was still a good run. I made the right move at the end, I just didn’t have a teammate to help carry it out. That’s the way it goes sometimes.”
Terry Cook finished fourth, followed by David Starr in fifth, Mario Gosselin sixth, Stacy Compton seventh, Dennis Setzer eighth, Justin Hobgood ninth, and Matt Crafton 10th.
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series points leader Ron Hornaday Jr. finished 15th but still maintains a 202-point lead in the standings over Crafton.
Pole-sitter Colin Braun came in 12th and Alabama native Rick Crawford was 21st.
Chrissy Wallace had a better showing that her father, Mike Wallace. Chrissy Wallace finished 13th , while Mike Wallace was 28th.
In 2009, Talladega Superspeedway proudly celebrates forty years of the most competitive racing in NASCAR. While the track has seen changes made to the cars that circle its high-banks, the surface that they race on and the grandstands that thousands of fans fill twice a year, one constant remains; Talladega Superspeedway is authentic NASCAR racing at its finest.
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