Three-peat for Stenhouse Jr. at Iowa
Newton, IA (Sports Network) - Ricky Stenhouse Jr. won a Nationwide Series race at Iowa Speedway for the third straight time with a dominating performance in Sunday's Pioneer Hi-Bred 250.
Stenhouse, the defending Nationwide champion, led a career-race-high 209 laps in the 250-lap race. He held off Elliott Sadler in the closing laps to claim his third win in the series this year and the fifth of his career.
Stenhouse's first Nationwide victory came at this 0.875-mile track one year ago. He followed up with another win here last August.
Sadler, the pole sitter, finished 1.5 seconds behind Stenhouse in the runner- up spot.
With the win, Stenhouse increased his points lead from 23 to 28 over Sadler.
Michael McDowell, who drove the No. 18 car for Joe Gibbs Racing, and Sprint Cup Series regular Kurt Busch, who was behind the wheel of the No. 54 car for his younger brother, Kyle, made contact while battling for the third position during the final lap. McDowell hit Busch in the rear and turned him around.
McDowell, who rebounded from a pit-road speeding penalty late in the race, crossed the finish line in third. Busch recovered from his spin to place fifth. Rookie Austin Dillon was fourth.
Justin Allgaier finished sixth, followed by Cole Whitt, also a rookie in the series this year, and Parker Kligerman.
Darrell Wallace Jr. made an impressive debut in NASCAR's second-tier series with a ninth-place run. Wallace was behind the wheel of the No. 20 car for JGR.
Brendan Gaughan completed the top-10.
Tires were an issue at Iowa. Danica Patrick cut a tire and slammed into the wall on lap 113. Patrick wound up finishing 30th. Tayler Malsam and Jeff Green also suffered blown tires and crashed into the wall during the event.
Travis Pastrana, in his third Nationwide race, finished 26th after experiencing an electrical issue in the late going.
05/20 17:08:56 ET