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Kyle Busch wins another Nationwide race at Fontana

Busch outduels Sam Hornish Jr. for his sixth win in the last eight series races at Auto Club Speedway.

March 24, 2013|By Jim Peltz
  • Kyle Busch won his sixth Nascar Nationwide race at Fontana in eight tries on Saturday.
Kyle Busch won his sixth Nascar Nationwide race at Fontana in eight tries… (Chris Graythen / Getty Images )

Kyle Busch hails from Las Vegas, but Fontana is like his second home — at least when he's sitting in a NASCAR Nationwide Series car.

Busch outdueled Sam Hornish Jr. on Saturday to win the Royal Purple 300 at Auto Club Speedway, Busch's sixth victory in the last eight Nationwide races at the two-mile Fontana track.

Hornish finished second, Regan Smith was third and Parker Kligerman finished fourth. Austin Dillon was fifth and 20-year-old rookie Kyle Larson finished sixth.

Busch, 27, mainly drives in NASCAR's premier Sprint Cup Series but also races in the second-level Nationwide Series, although he doesn't earn driver championship points in the Nationwide Series.

The Joe Gibbs Racing driver has won three of the five Nationwide races so far this season. His other victories came last week in Bristol, Tenn., and three weeks ago in Phoenix.

Busch's win Saturday also gave the Gibbs team its ninth consecutive victory in the Nationwide race at Auto Club Speedway.

Driving the No. 54 Toyota, Busch led 92 of the race's 150 laps although he and Hornish swapped the lead several times.

Busch called the win "a great home game for us," referring to Toyota's U.S. headquarters in Torrance, where Busch on Thursday had signed autographs for the automaker's employees.

"Didn't want to see [Hornish] win in front of our hometown crowd," Busch said. "We were battling each other."

Hornish, who won the Nationwide race in Las Vegas two weeks ago, continued to lead the Nationwide standings by 28 points over Smith.

"We just didn't have enough to beat Kyle today," said Hornish, who scraped the outside wall with two laps left as he tried to catch Busch.

"I was worried we would end up with a flat tire and I would end up looking real bad," Hornish said of hitting the wall. "I am glad things worked out."

james.peltz@latimes.com

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