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Kenseth outruns Edwards for Charlotte Nationwide win



Concord, NC (Sports Network) - Matt Kenseth passed Carl Edwards with three laps remaining and then held off his Roush Fenway Racing teammate to win Saturday's Top Gear 300 Nationwide Series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Kenseth made his first start in the series this season, substituting for Trevor Bayne in Roush Fenway's No.16 Ford. Bayne is expected to return to NASCAR competition next weekend at Chicagoland Speedway.

During a late-race caution, Kenseth pitted from the lead for four new tires, while Edwards remained on the track and took over the top position. Edwards last pitted during a round of green-flag pit stops with less than 70 laps to go in the 200-lap race.

"We had new tires, and I could see [Edwards] fade a little bit at the end of the run," Kenseth said. "Carl is one of the best out there every Sunday and Saturday, so when you can beat him at the game, you know you've had a good day."

Kenseth claimed his 26th career Nationwide win and third at Charlotte.

Edwards conserved enough fuel to cross the finish line 0.8 seconds behind Kenseth. It was a 1-2 finish for Roush Fenway. Last Saturday, Edwards won the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race here.

"I got a little bit tight, but Matt raced me really clean," said Edwards, who led the most laps with 63. "He was kind of messing with me there a little bit. I could tell when he needed to go he took off."

Kyle Busch, who was attempting to tie Mark Martin's series record of 49 wins, finished third.

"We had a really good car there at the beginning and through the middle stages of the race, but unfortunately, we just weren't fast enough there at the end," Busch said. "We just didn't have the speed to stay with those Roush cars today."

Ricky Stenhouse Jr., the pole sitter, and Reed Sorenson rounded out the top- five. Stenhouse claimed his first career Nationwide win last Sunday at Iowa Speedway. He will also make his Sprint Cup Series debut in Sunday's 600-mile race at Charlotte, driving the No.21 Wood Brothers Racing Ford in place of Bayne.

Brad Keselowski, Steve Wallace, Brian Scott, Aric Almirola and Elliott Sadler finished sixth through 10th, respectively.

Sadler holds only a one-point lead over Stenhouse. Sorenson is just two points behind the leader.

Kimi Raikkonen struggled in his Nationwide debut at Charlotte. Raikkonen was caught speeding off of pit road and had to serve a pass-through penalty on lap 141. The 2007 Formula One champion had to pit one lap after his penalty when he ran over a piece of debris on the track, and finished four laps behind in 27th.

05/28 18:23:04 ET


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