May 10, 2009
A Triad 1, 2 at Kentucky - Buescher wins!
SPARTA, Ky. (May 10, 2009) - Running a limited ARCA RE/MAX Series schedule in 2009, James Buescher had one goal in mind at the start of the season - win every time he climbs into the No. 32 Wolf Pack Rentals Toyota. So far, Buescher has done just that. Starting with the season-opener at Daytona International Speedway, the 19-year-old dominated the race and went on to capture the checkered flag. Last night, Buescher did it again at Kentucky Speedway. In a solid performance, the Win-Tron Racing team battled and brought home the hardware in the Bluegrass State to record Buescher's second win of the season and third career ARCA win.
After qualifying was canceled due to track issues, Buescher started from the pole position, as the Win-Tron Racing team is currently leading the owner's point standings. As soon as the green flag waved to start the 100-lap race, the caution flew for the first time, as the field wasn't able to complete one lap. Restarting on lap 11, Buescher and fellow competitor Justin Lofton raced hard, and three laps later, the No. 32 Toyota dropped back to second-place. The Plano, Texas native knew that he had a car capable of winning, as he radioed to his team saying that his car was very fast on restarts. This played into the hands of Buescher as the night went on, as there were a total of 9 cautions for 47 laps.
The second caution of the night came out on lap 38, as Buescher was running in the second position. Crew chief Mike Chaffee called Buescher to pit road for their one and only pit stop, taking four fresh tires, fuel, and a track bar adjustment. Before Buescher came to pit road, he received contact from another competitor, which resulted in left front fender damage, making his Toyota have a tight handling condition. The crew pulled the fender away from the tire and sent the youngest winner in ARCA history back out on the track in second-place.
The cautions continued as Buescher tried to regain the lead. On lap 52, the field restarted for the third time. In two laps, Buescher had raced his way around Lofton to take over the top position once again. During these laps, the No. 32 Toyota was resetting the fastest lap time of the whole weekend for the field. Cautions plagued the final 50 laps of the race at the 1.5-mile oval, as Buescher and Lofton continued to dominate the race. On lap 79, Buescher lost the lead just as a caution flew, but during the restart on lap 83, Buescher drove on the outside of Lofton to take the top spot and never look back. The two Toyotas continued to race hard for the remainder of the race, as Buescher went on to lead a total of 57 laps and win the Drive Smart Buckle-Up Kentucky 150 by .928 seconds.
On winning the race: "These guys are incredible. The car was terrible in practice, and they turned it around and got it going pretty good I guess. They changed just about everything every time I came in to the garage. We made the right calls during practice and just a little bit of adjustment during one pit stop (during the race)."
On Racing Justin Lofton (who finished second): "I'll tell you Justin (Lofton) race me awesome. I want to thank him for racing me clean, and I'm sorry we got into each other a little bit at the end - but that's racing."
On the final restarts: "I have no idea how I was able to pull away, but I can tell you this thing was going on the restarts. It was unbelievable. I've never had a car like that on restarts. I actually spun the tires twice on two of the last restarts, and Justin (Lofton) almost got by me on the last restart - I had to recover from that."
On having two wins in two starts this season: "It's incredible. Every time I step in this car I know I have a chance to win. I know I've done it three times, and I'm just happy I can race for these guys."
From ARCA PR - "My restarts really weren't as good as James's (Buescher); and then when I was passing a lapped car I think I ran over a piece of debris and it put a little hole in the nose of my car, which messed with the downforce a little bit and made it challenging," said Lofton. "James's car was tight until they loosened it up during the pit stop so I think both of us had our little problems with our cars; that just made things that much more interesting. I don't think you could ask for better side-by-side racing for the lead than what you saw today." Indeed Buescher and Lofton spent several laps side-by-side throughout the race before Buescher finally sealed the deal in the closing laps.
The next event for the ARCA RE/MAX Series will be the Menards 200 presented by Federated Car Care Sunday afternoon, May 17th at Toledo Speedway.