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Ryan Truex goes back-to-back at Dover Motor Speedway for 2nd career NASCAR victory

DOVER, Del. (AP) — It was another Truex family reunion in victory lane at Dover.

Ryan Truex won the Xfinity Series race Saturday at Dover Motor Speedway for the second straight year, giving the younger brother of Martin Truex Jr. the only NASCAR victories of his career.

Truex went back-to-back at the Monster Mile to give him two wins in 194 career starts over the three national series. The No. 20 Toyota pulled away over the final two laps in a race that went eight laps over its scheduled 200-lap finish. The race was slowed by rain, but it sure didn't matter to Truex, who does not have a fulltime Xfinity ride and made just his fourth start this season.

The Truex family had a special weekend last year at Dover. Ryan Truex dominated on the concrete-mile track and swept all three stages of the Xfinity race, leading 124 of the 200 laps. Two days later, Martin Truex Jr. won the Cup Series race at Dover — with their dad on hand to celebrate with both sons.

“Really in this sport, what you did last year doesn’t mean a thing,” Martin Truex Jr. said earlier Saturday. “He felt pretty good about his car yesterday. He didn’t get the lap he wanted in qualifying.”

Hours later, Ryan Truex got the laps he wanted down the stretch.

“I can't believe it,” he said. “Our car was just good at the end when it mattered. I was so loose all day.”

Joe Gibbs Racing won its 200th career Xfinity race with Toyota.

The 32-year-old Truex huffed and puffed during a postrace interview saying: “I think I held my breath the last two laps.”

Truex was again joined by his father and brother in victory lane — and also his fiancee, who had started to leave the track with under 20 laps left before she hitched a ride back on a cart.

“Martin was pretty pumped-up again. Not as much as last year,” Truex said, laughing. “He was still pretty pumped up. And so was my dad.”

Martin Truex Jr. starts 15th in Sunday's Cup race.

“The pressure is definitely on Martin tomorrow,” Truex said.

With his NASCAR champion father rooting him on, Carson Kvapil finished second. The 21-year-old Kvapil was trying to win his first career NASCAR race in just his second start in the developmental series. His dad, Travis, won NASCAR’s Truck Series championship in 2003.

“I know he can do it,” the elder Kvapil said on TV ahead of the final laps.

His kid almost delivered.

“I thought we had a pretty good restart,” he said. “It sucked, right, to get that close? I really don't even know what to say. I think we had a really fast Chevrolet here. I'm just really fortunate to be in the spot that I am. I'm happy that I had a shot to win the race at the end there.”

Sam Mayer, Sheldon Creed and Cole Custer rounded out the top five.

Anthony Alfredo finished ninth and took a $100,000 bonus from the series’ Dash-4-Cash program.

“We've been punching above our weight this year,” Alfredo said. “The money is kind of overwhelming us.”

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AP auto racing: https://apnews.com/hub/auto-racing