LONG POND, Pa. – In 2010 and 2017, Kyle Busch went into Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway one weekend and raced in all three NASCAR series – Camping World Truck, Xfinity and Cup.
Busch swept the three races – the only racer to accomplish that.
What Busch did on Sunday didn't equal that single-weekend feat, but in winning the Gander Outdoors 400, he did complete the 2018 season trifecta at Pocono Raceway.
In early June, Busch won the Xfinity race in the mountains of Pennsylvania, and he started this weekend by winning the Gander Outdoors 150 truck race.
Busch fought off pole-sitter Daniel Suarez, his teammate with Joe Gibbs Racing, in an overtime restart for his sixth Monster Energy victory of the season and 49th of his career to tie new Motorsports Hall of Fame inductee Tony Stewart.
"I make a T-shirt and then it will be special," Busch said of the feat. "But, yes, to win a truck and Xfinity and Cup race here is pretty neat.
"I strive to get better at each and every racetrack. Things change, setups change, cars change, aerodynamics change — all kinds of things. You have to keep ahead of it to show that you have the stuff to get it done."
The win kept Busch as the regular-season leader in points — 48 in front of Kevin Harvick — and moved him ahead of Harvick in playoff points, 35-33.
Busch placed second behind Harvick in qualifying, but both cars failed technical inspections.
Harvick was moved back to the 29th starting spot and Busch was 28th.
For much of the race, Busch's gradual move up in the field was overshadowed by the amazing way his car performed.
Less than 35 miles into the race, Harvick had moved into the top 10. He took the lead on Lap 61 and got the playoff bonus point for winning Stage 2.
Harvick looked as if he was on his way to his seventh victory.
Still, the only expected thing in racing is the unexpected.
Coming out of a pit stop, Aric Almirola – Harvick's teammate with Stewart-Haas Racing – hit Harvick's No. 4 Ford and damaged the left rear quarter panel.
Harvick had to come back into the pit, which dropped him almost back into his starting position with just over 30 laps remaining.
"What happened?" said Harvick, who finished fourth. "You saw the race, you tell me. We were running really well and then got hit in a pit stop. Things added up to a non-winning day."
Busch was leading comfortably when Darrell "Bubba" Wallace Jr. lost his brakes and had one of the scariest wrecks of the season by slamming into the wall coming out of Turn 1 at 150 mph.
Wallace was not seriously injured, but the race got a red flag and there was a restart with three laps to go.
Busch is one of the best in history at restarts and shot out ahead of Suarez, but, heading into the white flag, Almirola wrecked to stop the race and create a three-lap overtime.
Again, Busch took the lead and this time he pulled away for the victory.
"Suarez, I can't say enough about my teammate," Busch said. "What an awesome race. He had the second best car, well, third best car. Harvick was the best car, and we were second.