NEWTON, Iowa — Brad Keselowski had to overcome a 1,000-mile flight, a pit row violation and an overheating engine just to earn a shot at the lead.
Once Keselowski got his chance, it became perfectly clear who the only Sprint Cup regular in the field was.
Keselowski took control with 35 laps left to win the NASCAR Nationwide race at Iowa Speedway on Saturday night.
The defending Sprint Cup champion has won in his past three Nationwide starts, also topping the field at Richmond in April and Kentucky in June.
Keselowski flew in Saturday afternoon from Pocono Raceway in Pennsylvania, where NASCAR’s top series will race today. Keselowski was then sent to the back after a tire flew outside the box on an early pit stop, and engine issues threatened to derail him about halfway through the race.
Keselowski persevered though, emerging with his second win in four tries on Iowa’s .875-mile oval.
Points leader Austin Dillon led a race-high 116 laps, but gave up a huge lead following a late caution.
Sam Hornish Jr. was second, followed by Brian Vickers, Dillon and Kyle Larson.
TRUCK SERIES: In Long Pond, Pa., Ryan Blaney pulled away on the second attempt at a green-white-checkered finish to win at Pocono Raceway.
Blaney had the truck to beat off the final restart and won his second career Truck race.
Blaney also took the lead off the first restart until James Buescher spun to bring out the caution. Blaney would not be denied the second time.
Pole-sitter Miguel Paludo was second and German Quiroga Jr. was third.
INDYCAR SERIES: In Lexington, Ohio, defending IndyCar Series champion Ryan Hunter-Reay captured the pole for today’s Indy 200, turning the second-fastest lap in track history to edge Will Power for the top spot.
It will be the third time this season and the fourth time in his career that Hunter-Reay will start from the front.
Scott Dixon, who has won three consecutive races to move into second in the points race, will start third.
Helio Castroneves will start 15th. He leads Dixon by 24 points and Hunter-Reay by 69.