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NASCAR At Las Vegas: Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Wins Nationwide Sam's Town 300

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. grabbed the lead on a late cycle of pit stops, then held off Mark Martin on a pair of restarts and pulled away to win Saturday's Sam's Town 300 at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. It is the defending Nationwide Series champion's third-career win and first on a track other than the Iowa Speedway.

Martin finished second, ahead of point leader Elliott Sadler, Trevor Bayne, and Las Vegas native Brendan Gaughan. The top-10 was rounded out by rookie of the year contenders Cole Whitt and Austin Dillon, Justin Allgaier, Sam Hornish Jr., and Kasey Kahne. Danica Patrick finished 12th. Georgia's Chase Miller started and parked early in the race.

Kyle Busch was expected to be a factor in his self-owned Toyota at his home race track, but he crashed in the early going and spent 70 laps behind the wall making repairs. Another crash eliminated Nationwide Series regular Brian Scott, who had raced in the top-10 the entire race and led for a brief period early.

Stenhouse is the third Nationwide Series regular to win in as many races. The all-time record for Sprint Cup drivers to be shut out of victory lane at the start of a season is six races in 1995. That streak ended with Steve Grissom's victory at Bristol, the track where the Nationwide Series races next week.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.