Kyle Busch dominated the last 30 laps and finished more than four seconds ahead of the field to win the Fr8Auctions 200 on Saturday at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
It was his 60th Camping World Series Truck race victory.
“It’s always cool to get back to victory lane,” Busch said. “And it’s good to see John Hunter come home with a top-3 today, too. Obviously him racing for a championship, that’s important.”
John Hunter Nemechek, as the standings leader, started on the pole. The 23-year-old was coming off a win in Las Vegas on March 5 where he held off his team owner, Busch. It set up another showdown between the two Toyotas in Atlanta.
At least until Busch began to pull away from the field in the final stage. Nemechek finished third.
“I was hoping to beat Kyle, but I didn’t have anything for him at the end,” Nemechek said with a little laugh.
Austin Hill also made a significant move down the stretch, carving his way up to second, but there was no overcoming the gap to Busch. The runner-up finish was Hill’s best of the season.
“That last restart we had, I was trying to save my tires a little bit,” Hill said. “I didn’t want to kill them right off the bat. I started matching Kyle’s lap times and we had the green-flag restarts and got out in second. The pit crew did an awesome job today, but I gave that gap up and I could never close it. I needed to be a little quicker.”
The Winston Ga., native, who wore a UGA mask for his post-race TV interview, lamented this being the lone AMS stop for the trucks this season. Only the Cup and Xfinity Series return in July for the track’s second weekend of the 2021.
“All in all, a solid day,” Hill said. “I love Atlanta Motor Speedway, my home track. Can’t thank the fans enough for coming out. It was awesome to have you guys back. I just wish we could have gotten the job done and wish we could come back. This is a fun place to run.”
Johnny Sauter was fourth and Sheldon Creed, the only Chevy among a slew of Toyotas at the top of the standings, was fifth.
Zane Smith, Ross Chastain, Matt Crafton, Brett Moffitt and Stewart Friesen rounded out the top 10. Crafton (2015) and Moffitt (2018) are former winners at Atlanta. The 2020 winner, Grant Enfinger, was 11th.
It was just the fourth race of the 2021 season. Ben Rhodes won the first two at Daytona, on the super speedway and then the road course, in February.