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James Buescher picked up a win in the Drive Smart! Buckle-Up! Kentucky 150 that opened the 10th season of racing Saturday, May 9 at Kentucky Speedway.
It was the 18th running of a race in the ARCA RE-MAX series at the Sparta track.
James Buescher, driving the Wolf Pack Rentals Toyota No. 32, and Justin Lofton in the Lofton Cattle Toyota No. 6 led the pack of 37 cars on the front row as the green flag dropped.
A caution flag came out half way threw the first lap with two cars getting together in turn two.
The race didn’t restart until lap seven because of debris on the track. Buescher kept the lead until they reached the back stretch where Lofton took the lead with the nine time champion and four-time Kentucky winner Frank Kimmel in third. Buescher and Lofton battled back and forth until lap 38 when a caution flag came out for a car getting loose in turn two.
After all the cars come to pit road for tires, fuel and minor adjustments, Lofton came back out with the lead on lap 43. Three laps later the caution flew again when another car hit the wall in turn two. After this caution, it was Buescher and Lofton, along with Kimmel and the series points leader Parker Kligerman, battling for position. Kligerman forced Kimmel high on the track where a couple more short caution flags. Everyone stayed out because it was too close to the finish of the race to give up track position.
On lap 95 it was Buescher with the lead, Lofton second and Kligerman doing all he could to get around Lofton for second. Kligerman got loose under Lofton in turn four and went into the infield grass where he remained unable to move because of the wet field from all the rain.
This brought the last caution of the race.
The Kligerman crew ran out and pushed him out of the mud, but Buescher wen to win over Lofton by .928 seconds. Jesse Smith, Brain Ickler and Frank Kimmel rounded out the top five.
Kentucky Speedway’s next event is the Nationwide Series race on Friday and Saturday, June 12 and 13 with the Meijer 300 presented by Ritz.
The new owners of the track, Speedway Motorsports Inc., have started working on enhancements at the facility. Those attending the season’s first race could see the work on the new parking lots.
Workers have already moved well over 1.5 million yards of dirt and blasted and moved 900,000 cubic yards of rock.
This will be enough area for 14,000 vehicles, 34 entrances gates restroom/bathhouse facility near the main entrance and more than 200 infield camping sites, all are just the beginning of the improvements at the track.