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Blaney’s wild ride ends with first Nationwide victory

SPARTA, Ky. – Rookie Ryan Blaney earned his first career NASCAR victory and another Nationwide Series win for Penske Racing’s No. 22 Ford, holding off Austin Dillon and surviving several late cautions to win last night’s 300-mile race at Kentucky Speedway.

Blaney, who drives for Sprint Cup champion Brad Keselowski in the Camping World Truck Series, used his second start in the Mustang to claim the car’s 10th victory of 2013 and a season sweep at Kentucky. Keselowski drove the car to victory in June.

Blaney’s win included tense moments over the final 40 laps, from beating Dillon off pit road with a two-tire stop on lap 166 to reclaiming the lead from Dillon after losing it on the restart. More tests followed, including a near-brush with teammate Sam Hornish Jr.’s loose Ford and one final restart.

Matt Crafton was third, Hornish fourth and rookie Alex Bowman fifth in a Toyota.

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