Bodine Drives Truck To Win At Kentucky

SPARTA, Ky. (AP) - Todd Bodine tried to outrace Kyle Busch. When

that didn't work, the NASCAR Trucks Series veteran decided to

outsmart the Cup star.

Bodine recovered from a midrace spin - one started when Busch

edged a little too close to Bodine's rear quarterpanel - to end

Busch's three-series winning streak at four with a brilliant

fuel-saving run Friday night.

The series points leader managed to squeeze out 58 laps on one

tank of fuel to beat Johnny Sauter and Aric Almirola while ending

Busch's two-week stranglehold on Victory Lane.

"Our misfortune turned out to be our fortune," Bodine said his

fourth win of the season.

Sauter was second, followed by Almirola, Jason White and Ricky


Bodine exacted a little revenge on Busch.

The two got together briefly last week at Chicagoland, where

Busch eventually rolled to his fourth straight win across NASCAR's

three national series.

They were at it again at the bumpy 1.5-mile oval in northern

Kentucky. They were battling for the lead just past the race's

halfway point when Bodine got loose trying to take the lead from

Busch on lap 82. He lost control coming out of Turn 4 and slid onto

the infield grass. His truck was largely unscathed and he pitted on

lap 92.

Bodine wasn't supposed to make it 58 laps on one tank, yet he

managed to sip enough gas to make it hold up and extend his lead

over Almirola to 261 points with seven races to go.

"I'd like to thank Kyle for driving dirty and pushing us

down," Bodine said in Victory Lane. "That made us get the gas."

The remark angered Busch and the two exchanged pleasantries.

Bodine didn't back down from his comment, saying he's getting tired

of Busch's seeming lack of respect for his fellow drivers.

"Unfortunately, I've always had a lot of respect for Kyle,"

Bodine said. "Slowly but surely I'm losing it."

Busch, who will look for a record-breaking 11th win in the

Nationwide Series on Saturday in Atlanta, was not approached for

comment afterward.

He began the day hoping to match Fred Lorenzen, Richard Petty,

Bobby Allison and David Pearson as the only drivers to win five

consecutive NASCAR events.

No biggie. He wasted little time making his way through the

field. Busch was in front by lap 55 and appeared ready to continue

the dominance that began two weeks ago at Bristol, when he swept

the Trucks, Nationwide and Cup race. He backed it up last week in

Chicago and clearly had the fastest truck Friday.

It just wasn't so great on fuel mileage. He pitted under green

with 23 laps remaining, ceding the lead to Bodine who kept his

right foot gingerly on the throttle as the laps wound down.

Bodine crossed the finish line with a couple of ounces to spare.

Not bad for a truck that needed a serious facelift after getting

banged up in Chicago. The truck was in the shop Sunday and had a

new engine by Monday.

Five days later, it was good enough to help Bodine pick up his

21st career Trucks victory.

Bodine hopes there's more checkered flags in his future. He

knows he'll have to beat Busch to get there. He's hoping the

supremely talented Busch, however, will learn some manners.

"It's not just the Trucks Series, it's every division he

races," Bodine said. "He's so good. He's without a doubt one of

the best drivers NASCAR has ever seen ... he doesn't have to drive

like that to win races but he does and he's getting away with it

because NASCAR won't do anything about it. He was mad because I

called him out on it."

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)