HOMESTEAD, Fla. (AP) — Kyle Busch has won his second NASCAR Cup Series championship, giving team owner Joe Gibbs his fifth title.
Busch’s win capped NASCAR’s championship weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
On Saturday, Tyler Reddick won his second consecutive Xfinity Series championship by snatching the lead away from Cole Custer in a spirited season finale.
It all started on Friday when Matt Crafton won a championship without winning a race, an unprecedented feat under NASCAR’s new title-deciding playoff systems.
Busch emerged from the Joe Gibbs Racing juggernaut and clinched his second title in five years after two teammates were slowed by pit road gaffes.
Busch won the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway to snap a 21-race losing streak and beat Gibbs teammates Denny Hamlin and Martin Truex Jr., as well as rival Kevin Harvick.
Busch won the 2015 title and joins seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson as the only active drivers with multiple Cup championships.
Busch had raced for the championship in each of the last three seasons but fell short last season in part because of his crew’s own pit error.
Hamlin and Truex each had issues on pit road.
Reddick and Custer traded the lead three times in a single lap with Reddick finally surging his Richard Childress Racing entry to the front for good with 18 laps remaining. Reddick is the first to win consecutive Xfinity championships since Ricky Stenhouse Jr. in 2011 and 2012 and ninth driver with multiple titles.
It’s the only championship for manufacturer Chevrolet, which was shut out in Friday night’s Truck Series finale when Crafton won the title in a Ford.
Reddick’s title comes in his final ride as full-time driver of the No. 2 for RCR. He’s being promoted to the Cup Series next season to drive the No. 8 Chevy.
Stewart-Haas Racing announced Friday that Custer is being promoted to the Cup Series next year. Same for Christopher Bell, who finished fifth in the race and third in the championship picture.
Crafton finished second in Friday night’s Truck Series finale at Homestead — good enough for his third series title in the winner-take-all format. The champion needed only to finish highest of the foursome of Crafton, reigning series champion Bret Moffitt, Stewart Friesen and Ross Chastain to win the title.
Crafton’s winless streak dates 58 races, to 2017 at Eldora, but the 43-year-old did not need the victory to claim the title. Chastain finished fourth, Moffitt fifth and Friesen 11th.