With Kyle Busch firmly ahead and seemly poised to win, it appeared like most other Xfinity Series races Saturday at Auto Club Speedway. Then, everything went bananas with one lap remaining, and when it was over somehow Austin Dillon was celebrating an improbable victory.
The craziness began just after Busch took the white flag, when his left-front tire exploded as he entered Turn 1. Despite the considerable damage, Busch continued driving as fast as possible, trying in vain to fend off second-place Daniel Suarez, who was well behind and attempting to save fuel.
Suarez eventually passed Busch down the backstretch, but just as he did Suarez's car ran out of fuel and slowed, returning the lead to Busch. Throughout all this Austin Dillon overcame a 5-second deficit to close rapidly on the leaders, and out of Turn 4 he pulled to the outside of Busch, who either tried to throw a desperate block or because of the flat tire drifted up and shoved Dillon into the wall.
Regardless, Dillon completed the pass to win a race that a lap before Busch had presumably in hand. Busch led a race high 133 of 150 laps, while Dillon led just a single lap -- though the most important one.
Darrell Wallace Jr. finished third, with Suarez fourth and Elliott Sadler fifth.
"He tried to screw me there at the end, but it didn't work out for him, did it?" Dillon said of Busch's block.