Kyle Busch Motorsports driver Parker Kligerman qualified seventh for Saturday’s Kansas Lottery 300 Nationwide Series race at Kansas Speedway, and in spite of a couple of pit road problems, finished in the same position.
The No. 77 Kyle Busch Foundation “Pretty In Pink” Toyota Camry made its way to the front of the pack by Lap 20, leading seven laps early on. Kligerman stayed in the top five for much of the early portion of the race until a Lap 85 pit stop – Elliott Sadler spun shortly after Kligerman pitted, putting the 23-year-old driver down a lap behind drivers who had yet to pit; he was able to take the wave-around once pit road opened and restarted 16th.
Kligerman worked his way through the field, advancing to 11th before the next caution came out on Lap 116. Quick work by the No. 77 crew, led by crew chief Eric Phillips, got him out of the pits in ninth. Kligerman made his way back to the top three when a caution on Lap 146 set up the final pit stops of the race. Phillips called for a two-tire change and fuel, but a lug nut fell off the left-rear tire as Kligerman was leaving the stall – the crew had to push the car back inside the pit stall and reattach the lug nut before Kligerman could return to the track. Kligerman restarted on Lap 150 from the 17th spot and began to make his climb back to the top 10 and his seventh-place finishing position.
"Our Project Pink Toyota Camry was really fast today - I had an inkling about that after practice," said Kligerman on the KBM website. "We got in the race and the first run - restarts-wise - made positions. Took the lead within the first 20 laps and drove away from second-place and felt like this was our day. From there, we just showed top-three speeds throughout the whole race. We got all the way back up to second after one of the first pit stops and we're behind the 7 (Regan Smith) and we did that green flag stop, and the caution came out right in the middle of the green flag stop and caught us a lap down. We had to fight all the way back from that. Got all the way back into the top-three again and we had an issue on pit road which relegated us all the way to the back again and drove all the way back through the field to seventh. We did it a couple of times today with a lot of speed and just proud of everyone on this team. Hopefully, we can carry this same speed over the next couple of weeks and minimize those mistakes."
Matt Kenseth won the race, followed by Paul Menard, Regan Smith, KBM owner Kyle Busch and Justin Allgaier. Kligerman remains 10th in Nationwide Series points.
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