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NASCAR Nationwide Series 2009 Review

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Entering 2009, the NASCAR Nationwide Series championship battle was expected to be a close contest between Gibbs Racing’s Kyle Busch and Roush Racing’s Carl Edwards. The duo did stage a battle throughout the season, but although Edwards sometimes seemed poised to truly threaten Busch, it was a case of “so near but yet so far.”

Busch won the point battle by 210 points and was the leading winner with nine victories to five for Edwards. Busch held the edge in Top Five finishes over Edwards, twenty-five to twenty-three, and the duo tied in Top Ten finishes at thirty.

Brad Keselowski, the driver for Dale Earnhardt, Jr.’s Chevrolet effort, finished third in points and ranked third in Top Five finishes with twenty-two and third in Top Ten finishes with twenty-eight. His four wins ranked fourth as part-timer Joey Logano scored five wins for Gibbs Racing, tying Edwards for second ranking.

Twelve drivers scored wins in the 35-race season. Busch won nine races, Edwards and Logano five apiece, Keselowski four. Greg Biffle, Clint Bowyer, Kevin Harvick and David Ragan each won two races. Single wins were scored by Marcos Ambrose, Mike Bliss, Matt Kenseth, and Tony Stewart. David Ragan was the season’s only first-time series racewinner and he won twice!

Eight entrants scored victories. Gibbs Racing led with fourteen (nine by Busch, five by Logano) and Roush Racing scored ten (Edwards five, Biffle two, Ragan two, Kenseth one). Earnhardt, Jr. Racing won four with Keselowski. Kevin Harvick Racing won two with Harvick and RCR won twice with Bowyer. Geschickter Racing won with Ambrose, Hendrick Racing with Stewart, and James Finch with Bliss.

Toyota led in manufacturer victories with fifteen, fourteen by Gibbs and one by Geschickter. Chevrolet amassed ten triumphs with five entrants as Earnhardt, Jr. Racing scored four, Harvick and RCR two apiece, and Finch and Hendrick one each. Ford won ten races, all by Roush Racing.

Edwards finished at the top of one statistical category, as he was the only driver to win on superspeedways(twice), on the short tracks (twice), and on a road course (once)!

The three Daytona/Talladega races were won by Stewart (February Daytona), Ragan (Talladega), and Bowyer (July Daytona). The twenty-three superspeedway races not held at Daytona and Talladega were won by nine drivers but dominated by Kyle Busch with eight victories! Logano’s five wins came in these races, Keselowski won two, Biffle and Edwards two, with single wins to Bliss, Bowyer, Harvick, and Kenseth. The road course wins went to Ambrose and Edwards. Seven races were held on short tracks, and Edwards and Keselowski won two with single wins to Kyle Busch, Harvick, and Ragan.

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