After leading much of the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race, Kyle Busch‘s promising weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway ended with a broken part and left the defending champion criticizing both his equipment and Justin Allgaier after a subsequent crash.
Busch was leading the field midway through Sunday’s delayed race when the Nevada native began reporting a broken part in his No. 18 M&M’s Toyota Camry. Fighting an ill-handling car, Busch surrendered the lead to Kevin Harvick, and was planning to make his way to the garage area on lap 357 when he lost control of his machine going through turn 1 of the half-mile concrete oval.
Busch veered left, overcorrected right and spun in front of the field. The first slew of drivers were able to avoid his No. 18, but Allgaier ultimately collided with Busch’s car before careening up the track and into Martin Truex, Jr, who was then hit in the rear by Kyle Larson.
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While Busch was able to get his car refired, he quickly retired behind the bit wall, throwing his helmet into the car in disgust.
After the crash, Busch was critical of his team’s equipment in recent years at the .533-mile Bristol.
“The last few times we’ve been here, we’ve had really fast M&M’s Toyota Camrys and we haven’t been able to finish,” Busch said. “We’ve been having parts failures here, so something we’ve got to address and fix. I’m really tired of losing races here with parts falling apart, so they’ll (Joe Gibbs Racing) hear about it on Tuesday.”
Busch was also critical of Allgaier after what he perceived as avoidable contact.
“But the person that’s really the biggest moron out there is the spotter of the 46 and the driver of the 46 (Michael Annett). I’ve been wrecking for half a lap and they just come on through and clean us out. That’s stupid, so I don’t know – frustrating day. Let’s go home.”
Allgaier took the blame following the incident, saying he misjudged the crash.
“The No. 22 (Joey Logano) ducked in front of me getting into (Turn) 1 and I had to jam on the brakes pretty hard. I got really loose and I was just trying to catch it,” Allgaier said. “That is when the spotter was telling me that the No. 18 (Kyle Busch) was spinning and he kept rolling down the hill so at first I committed to go below him because I was already on the bottom and then he was still coming down the hill so I tried to go out around the outside of him and unfortunately I just didn’t make it.
“Sorry to Kyle (Busch) that is the worst possibly scenario when the leader spins out and you hit them. Just really frustrating.”
Barring either driver making it back onto the track, Busch and Allgaier will finish 39th and 40th, respectively.