KYLE BUSCH PROVES 2015 WAS NO FLUKE
Winning the 2015 Monster Energy Cup Series title while only running 2/3rds of the season due to an injury has been eating away at Kyle Busch for years as many have tried to shoot it down as illegitimate championship for years. This year at Homestead-Miami during the Ford EcoBoost 400, Busch shut those talks down with his second Cup championship.
There was no qualifying as the rain had prevented practice and NASCAR decided it was better to have practice for everyone. With qualifying canceled, The Final four started at the front with Denny Hamlin on the pole with Kevin Harvick in second. Harvick gets a strong start to get ahead for the lead while Hamlin and Busch were side by side for second and Martin Truex Jr fell back on the start. Harvick began pulling away as Truex began to climb back into second and started catching Harvick. Truex went high to catch Harvick and pass him only twenty laps in as Larson started passing everyone as he ran as high as possible to get to second. The green flag stops began when Harvick and Kyle Busch pitted at the same time; the stops cycled out with no changes at the front. With no changes, Truex cruised into lapping the top twenty and winning the first stage.
Truex was first off pit-road with Jimmie Johnson in second. Larson pushed Kyle Busch to the lead on the start while Truex got a huge run on the outside to get the lead back. Busch fell back to third and had to hold off Harvick for the position for some laps with some hard racing between the two. The green flag stops began with Hamlin; Kyle Busch took the lead as the pits cycled out with Larson back in second. Truex had an issue off of pit-road as his team put the tires on the wrong side and he had to pit again and fall a lap down. Truex was saved shortly after as John Hunter Nemechek had a spin and save and brought out the caution. Busch was first off pit-road and was pushed ahead on the restart with Harvick right behind him; Harvick went high and went all the down to take the lead. Busch was able to catch back up to Harvick and get the lead to win the stage.
No major changes off pit-road going into the start of stage three as the Final Four were the top four. On the start, Truex pushed Harvick too hard and nearly spun him as Harvick got loose and spun his wheels. Hamlin got the lead from Busch as Harvick and Truex fell through the field thanks to the bad start. Harvick and Truex started making their way back as Busch raced back to lead; Harvick drove back to second until Hamlin changed his line and took it back. Bubba Wallace had to pit with a flat tire, but he was able to pit with no caution as Harvick began to fall. After quite a few quiet laps, the green flag stops began again; Larson started the stops but had to go back as his motor was blowing and his strong race was officially over. Harvick stayed out the longest, hoping for a caution, and nearly got his wish as William Byron started to slow with no oil pressure, but he was able to make the pits as well. Hamlin had to pit again as his team had put too much tape on his car and it was beginning to spew water and overheat. Hamlin got the tape removed and he started to drive back through the field, but his championship hopes were gone unless there was a late caution. With Harvick finally pitting, Busch inherited the lead with Truex over ten seconds back. To the end of the race, Busch had no competition or issues and easily drove to his fifth win of the year and his second Cup championship.