Erik Jones got past Kyle Busch and Kyle Larson with three laps left to win Saturday’s Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway.
Jones’ win ended Busch’s four-race win streak across NASCAR’s three major touring series.
With three laps to go on the final restart, Jones got a great jump, passing Busch, his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate, and then set his sites on Larson.
After at least two times where their cars touched, Jones got past Larson to take the victory.
“I figured at some point we’d get a win,” Jones said. “I knew it would be a tall task to do it at Bristol. It’s a big day for us.”
In addition to being the first full-time Xfinity Series regular to qualify for the Chase for the championship, Jones also won $100,000 for capturing the first of four Dash 4 Cash races this season.
Busch finished second, followed by Larson, Austin Dillon and Justin Allgaier.
“Restarts for us were horrible today,” Busch said. “It’s frustrating when you’re in position, have a chance and you just throw it away. (Jones) deserves to win.”
Added Larson, “I definitely didn’t want to see that caution and knew I was tight on short runs and just did a really bad job on that restart, a really, really bad job. I felt, I know, I gave that one away. It hurts to lose one like that.”
MORE: Results of Xfinity Series Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 at Bristol
MORE: Suarez holds on to Xfinity points lead; Jones climbs to second with win
HOW JONES WON: Pure patience. Jones took advantage of a great jump on the final restart, traded fenders a couple of times with Larson and then motored to the win. Jones led 62 of the 200 laps.
WHO ELSE HAD A GOOD RACE: The battle between Larson and Busch was the story of the day. Larson led a race-high 94 laps, while Busch led 43 laps. But neither could stop Jones on the final restart and had to settle for second (Busch) and third (Larson). … Justin Allgaier had a strong run, as did Daniel Suarez, finishing fifth and sixth respectively.
WHO HAD A BAD RACE: Mario Gosselin made contact with Ryan Reed with 12 laps left and suffered left front damage that relegated Gosselin to a 24th-place finish. … Matt DiBenedetto retired after just four laps and finished last (40th). Josh Wise finished 39th, while J.J. Yeley was 38th.
NOTABLE: Jones announced after the race that his father was diagnosed with cancer in the last month. He cried in Victory Lane while talking to his parents on the phone. … This was Jones’ third career victory in 33 Xfinity Series starts. … Jones moved up three spots and into second place in the Xfinity Series points standings. Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Daniel Suarez remains atop the points with a six-point lead over Jones and an eight-point edge over Allgaier.
QUOTE OF THE DAY: “The two cars that were the class of the field didn’t win,” – Kyle Busch on the race-long battle he had with Kyle Larson.
WHAT’S NEXT: ToyotaCare 250 on April 23 at Richmond International Raceway