HOMESTEAD, Fla. – Martin Truex overcame a series of setbacks Saturday to win his second straight NASCAR Busch Series season title, finishing seventh as Ryan Newman won the Ford 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Nextel Cup stars Newman and Greg Biffle battled at the front of the pack through most of the season-ending, 200-lap race.

Biffle, who has one victory and eight runner-up finishes this year in the Busch Series, passed Newman for the lead on lap 172 and began to pull away. Biffle was leading by nearly 2 seconds and seemingly on the way to an easy win when Brent Sherman brought out a caution flag on lap 193 when he hit the wall and then lost a wheel.

On the ensuing restart on lap 198, Newman got a great jump, drove to the high side of the banking and raced past Biffle into the lead. Newman held off the challenger the rest of the way, winning by 0.138 seconds – about three car-lengths.

For Newman, a part-time performer in Busch, it was his sixth victory in nine races this season – all of them coming in his last seven races.

“I’ve got to thank Biff for racing me clean,” Newman said. “It was just a good restart for us. Biffle was coming at the end, but there weren’t enough laps for him to get to me.”

Truex came into the race with a 64-point lead over Clint Bowyer and wound up winning by 68 points as Bowyer finished behind him in eighth.

“There were times this year when we just weren’t running very good,” Truex said. “But we all stuck together as a team. But this thing was three times harder to win than last year’s, and I’m three times prouder of this team.”

Truex, who will move up to Cup full-time next season, had to survive quite a bit of drama to become the first driver to win consecutive Busch Series titles since Chance 2 Motorsports team co-owner Dale Earnhardt Jr. did it in 1998 and 1999.

Truex quickly made his way toward the front and was running in the top 10 when he began to feel a vibration. It became bad enough he pitted under the green flag on lap 59 to change the right rear tire. That left Truex a lap down in 31st place.

But the champion didn’t stay there long. He again charged toward the front, got back on the lead lap with the help of a series of caution flags and again moved into the top 10, keeping Bowyer within sight most of the way.

Musgrave wins first NASCAR truck title

HOMESTEAD, Fla. – Crew members piled onto the back of Ted Musgrave’s truck as he started to drive around Homestead-Miami Speedway. They all wanted to be part of this celebration – one that eluded them for several years.

Musgrave finished 20th in the rain-postponed Ford 200 on Saturday and edged Dennis Setzer for his first NASCAR Truck Series championship.

The 49-year-old Musgrave became NASCAR’s oldest champion, claiming the title after finishing second in 2001 and third the last three years.

“I thought I was a carbon copy of Mark Martin,” Musgrave cracked, referring to Martin’s 19 seasons in the Cup series with four runner-ups and no titles.

Todd Bodine won his third consecutive race and finished third in the points standings, 73 points behind the champion.

Setzer finished second for the third consecutive year.

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