SPARTA, KY – Heading into Saturday night’s Quaker State 400 at the Kentucky Speedway, it was a race that most though would be Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr. or Brad Keselowski’s to lose.
Combined, they have won seven of the eight years that the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series has been coming to the Kentucky Speedway. Plus, JGR and Penske have combined to win on all but one 1.5-mile track this season.
I mean Busch has two wins in eight tries including a top 10 in all but one start at Kentucky. He also boasts five top five finish in his last six tries on the race track. He was the class of the field on Saturday night.
The same couldn’t be said for the other two.
Truex, has won this race in each of the last two years to go along with not only leading a combined 326 laps since 2017, he won each stage in both races too. That streak came to an end on Saturday as Truex only scored three stage points (8th in Stage 1) and was a non factor all night. He’d finish just19th in his No. 19 Toyota after being hit with a speeding penalty on his final stop. Truex, has failed to lead a lap in five of his last six starts on the season. What’s rare is, all three of his teammates led a lap on Saturday night and finished in the top five.
Keselowski, has three wins to his credit at Kentucky and has four top six finishes in his last five tries too. Instead, Keselowski had a problem getting up to speed on restarts and would only finish 11th and 25th in the two stages. He was lapped by Busch on Lap 134. Keselowski, only finished 20th in his No. 2 Ford. Three of his last four finishes on the season have been 18th or worse.