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Jimmie Johnson won the prior week in Martinsville to win his second race of the Sprint Cup season. Kyle apparently did not want Jimmie to be the only NASCAR multiple-race winner for long in 2013. He started off the weekend by not only qualifying for the pole in the NRA 500, but doing it in record breaking fashion. Kyle drove in #18 Interstate Batteries Toyota around the Texas Motor Speedway in 27.509 seconds, that’s an average speed of 196.299 mph for the lap.
From the first drop of the green flag Kyle shot out to the lead and seldom left the front of the 43 car field. He led a race-high 171 laps of the 334 lap race under the lights of Texas Motor Speedway. Six other drivers did lead the race at some point of the race including Martin Truex Jr. who was out front for 142 laps.
Truex took the lead near the end of the race for his last time following the sixth caution of the race on lap 290. He was able to get ahead of Kyle by a decent distance and looked as if he would steal the win from the dominant car. However, on lap 315 debris on the track caused NASCAR to waive the seventh and final yellow flag of the NRA 500, erasing the lead Truex had over Kyle.
Kyle’s pit crew performed mistake free on the last pit stop of the race getting him out of the pits in first place for the restart. When the green flag waived on lap 318 Kyle shot out to the lead and never looked backed as he captured his first win in the sprint Cup series at Texas Motor Speedway and second win of the 2013 season. The win completed a sweep for Kyle as he had also won the Nationwide Series race Friday (4/12).
Martin Truex Jr. came across the finish line in second place with Carl Edwards grabbing the third place finish. Greg Biffle captured fourth place Saturday night. Rounding out the top five in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race was Joey Logano. See the complete results in the NRA 500 here.
Jimmie Johnson held on to the point lead leaving the Texas Motor Speedway. Brad Kesleowski also held steady at second place in points after the NRA 500. The win moved Kyle Busch up a spot to third in points. Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards both moved up two spots to fourth and fifth places respectively. Dale Earnhardt Jr. had his second bad race in a row to fall out of the top three in points for the first time of the year landing in the sixth place. See the complete NASCAR Sprint Cup point standings here.
Next week the NASCAR Sprint Cup series moves back to Sunday afternoon in the STP 400 at Kansas Speedway.
By: Buck Stevens
(Feature photo credit: NASCARmedia.com/284827Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)