Tag:Kyle Busch
Posted on: August 12, 2011 2:26 pm
Edited on: August 12, 2011 3:08 pm

Kyle Busch leads opening Glen practice

By Pete Pistone

Kyle Busch topped the speed charts in Friday's first Sprint Cup Series practice session for Sunday's Heluva! Good Sour Cream Dips at The Glen. The Joe Gibbs Racing driver and former Watkins Glen winner laid down a lap of 122.938 mph to lead the session.

Defending race winner Juan Pablo Montoya, A.J. Allmendinger, Ryan Newman and Brad Keselowski completed the first five.

Despite his broken ankle and other foot injuries, Keselowski reported no issues behind the wheel of the Miller Lite Dodge.

Five time Watkins Glen winner Tony Stewart's practice session included a pair of spins.

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Posted on: August 7, 2011 9:49 pm

Kyle and Kurt Busch post Pocono comments

Posted by Pete Pistone

Kyle Busch and Kurt Busch met the media after their second and third place finishes respectively in Sunday's Good Sam RV Insurance 500 at Pocono Raceway. Kurt also addressed his late race battle and altercation with Jimmie Johnson:

KYLE BUSCH: We had an awesome M&M’s Camry. The guys were flawless this weekend. We brought out a great car right off the truck and worked real hard at it. Certainly it was fast and was proving that for a little while. That last caution killed us. I just hated to see that. I was really hoping that we could go green the rest of the way. I felt like our car was fast out front when I can run my own pace and run my own line and then we had that restart, and I had been running lower in 1 and 2 all day so I figured that would be my choice just to stay low and I tried to get a good exit off of Turn 1 but Jimmie got alongside of me down the frontstretch and kind of bogged me down a little bit there on the restart, slowed me up. But we were able to go off into Turn 1 I think threewide and somehow I got outside. Got through it and then tried chasing down the 2. Just didn’t have enough. Kurt gave me a shot down the back there to help me clear Jimmie and that was my saving grace so I didn’t stuck back there battling with those guys. All in all, a great day to come home second but really disappointed that we couldn’t win here at one of my worst tracks, and in front of all of our M&Ms people that were here today and from nearby Hackettstown, and, you know, also getting that Sprint bonus deal for Atlanta. We'd like to get a win before that happens, and get some charity money and, of course, get some money for our race fans, too.            

THE MODERATOR: Thank you, Kyle. Joining Kyle is Kurt Busch. Kurt drives the No. 22 Shell Pennzoil Dodge for Penske Racing. Solid performance out there, third place today.           

He comes now into the championship standings fourth place in the points right now. Kurt, you led a lot of laps out there. Talk about, you had the rain delay, almost two-hour rain delay. Looked like you came back after that rain delay and that car was stronger than ever. And just talk about how things unfolded for you out there this afternoon.           

KURT BUSCH:  Today was definitely a hard-fought battle. Early on we were able to benefit from our good qualifying position and run up front, exchanged the lead back and forth a little bit with Logano and Hamlin. Running right there at third, fourth, fifth, just clicking away laps.           

But we always start off good when the track's fresh, and then we just start to slide more and more and more as the track rubbers in.           

And we were struggling just kind of hanging on to a top 10 spot. And the rains came, and we pitted right before the rain, at the time I thought my crew chief was crazy. That would have trapped us 26th if we didn't get it back underway.           

But luckily we did. And it looked like the Penske guys were the smartest guys when it came to rain delay, because we came out of there 1-2 after that restart.           

And, again, our car just took off on a fresh racetrack that wasn't rubbered in, and then the racetrack rubbered up really quick those last 60, 70, 80, laps and we were hanging on to it in the end, brought it home third. Good hard-fought battle for us, rooting for those two in front of me my teammate and my younger brother to wreck each other, but not to wreck each other. Of course I wanted both of them to win and I wanted to win. Anybody but the 48. And us three, we came home up front.           

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Kurt or Kyle.            

Q. Kyle, to what degree did you feel like a lion chasing down prey at the end of the race, since you didn't catch or beat Brad, how impressed were you with his performance?            

KYLE BUSCH: Certainly they got track position on me and I could stay right with them but I couldn't get, anytime I got too close I'd lose the air off my car and I couldn't get a run on them. So I felt like if we would have got out front, I think I could have pulled away more than he pulled away from me but just a matter of thattrack position.           

So certainly he gave it everything he had and played tough and did a good job. So it actually helps here, I think, to use less brake than more brake. So that might be beneficial to have a foot problem anytime you come to Pocono, in my opinion.           

Q. Kurt, with what you overcame today to get back in the top 5 first of all, to any degree was the paint exchange with Jimmie Johnson, the way you beat him down, kind of I've had enough and I'm going to get through this day?           

KURT BUSCH:  Yeah, we had a good battle all day, and especially at the end with the 48.           

But our car, it does really good with fresh tires and then as the track rubbers in, it's a battle. I can't explain it.           

And thinking today, you know, we borrowed Brad Keselowski's setup. We put it in race morning. Went for it. And I could do nothing but smile all day to say thanks to a teammate and congratulations to him in victory lane, even with his sore foot.           

Like Kyle said, sometimes you might want to use a little less brake here, and I can't, I couldn't just hold back the smile on my face to see those guys doing well.           

And for us to beat the 48, I mean, we've had our battles. And a lot of times I come out on the short end of the stick. But what I saw today was good, hard racing, where one guy jukes at the other, the other guy jukes back and rubs you a little bit, that's racing. That's what race fans love to see. That's what they bought this ticket for. That's what they're sitting in the grandstands rooting on their favorite driver for is to see him get out there, mix it up clean and bring it home just like we were, third and fourth.            

Q. Kurt, according to my notes, lap 1 you were three and a half seconds ahead, and you lost that all in about 12 laps, is that just -- does the car go away that fast or was there a specific problem?          

KURT BUSCH:  No, our car goes away that fast, crew chief reading off lap times when Kyle was behind us, he said you're four-tenths quicker, you're three-tenths quicker, two-tenths quicker, you're one-tenth, you're even, and it goes just that fast. It's just a tenth of a lap that I'm battling and I cannot figure out why.            

So the rain delay really helped us today to get a top 5.            

Q. Kurt, were you not upset at all with the way Jimmie raced, were you just upset with him coming to you and --           

KURT BUSCH:  Here we go, People Magazine. I'm glad you asked. We were racing hard. I think that's what we saw on TV and exactly that's what should be reported. There are a lot of times when the 22 is on the short end of the stick of the 48. And I raced him hard today. I'm glad I did. I have no regrets in it.            

Q. Kyle, in response to Kurt's comments, would you like to see just as much of that and a little less give and take afterwards by the drivers?           

KURT BUSCH:  You wonder why we don't because we have to come in here and answer battled questions like this. Just accept it: It was great racing.            

Q. On that same subject there?           

KYLE BUSCH:  I didn't see it. I didn't see it. I have no idea what happened.            

Q. When there's bumping and banging, it's a natural thing to go on during the race, do you wish sometimes that drivers would just accept it as part of the show, putting on a good show, as Kurt said, and not have a problem with it after the fact?            

KYLE BUSCH:  Depends on how it is and where it is, who it is, all that kinds of stuff. Certainly those two may have a little bit of a history, for me, if it was Brad Keselowski and me, I'd probably be a little tweaked. But again I don't know what happened. But you'd expect it at Martinsville or Bristol or Richmond, those kinds of places. Not so much at two and a half mile or mile and a half stuff. We're going too fast.            

Q. Kurt, can you talk about just the fact that you never gave up? I mean, even at a time when you guys opted to take a different tire plan than somebody else, but you were frustrated but you just didn't let it get to you and just kind of fought back for your position?           

KURT BUSCH:  That's what I try to do each and every week is give my best effort and not give up. No matter what comes at us. Some days it feels like we're just running an uphill battle and can't quite run the lap times that it takes.           

I feel like we're a very good top 10 car. But we really have to work hard and find a unique way to get these top 5s. And so I'm never going to lay down behind the wheel. When I show frustration, people get excited oh wow he's lost focus just brought home another third place finish.            

Q. Kyle, long day today, ran the two races, came up short in both. Is that frustrating to -- put in this long day and just miss out in both of them? Just kind of what your mood finishing second here two races today?           

KYLE BUSCH:  Certainly it's definitely frustrating. With the truck race we expected second. So that's not bad. But here, for as good as our M&M's Camry was today, we expected a little more than that.           

Normally we're coming down and trying to beat the 11 car at the end, and lo and behold we have somebody come out of nowhere. I feel like he ran top 5, top 8 all day, I guess, but I didn't know that he was that good there at the end.           

So certainly we wish we would have run or maybe made a little bit of an adjustment on that last pit stop to help it. But I think it's kind of ironic, the 2 won both races and the 18 finished second both races. Just a little weird, that's all.            

Q. Kurt, we've seen how physically demanding this track is, and we've all seen the pictures of Brad's ankle. Can you give us some perspective as far as him racing his car to victory lane on that kind of a physical condition?           

KURT BUSCH:  That was like when Denny Hamlin had knee surgery won the week right after that. Those are moments in our sport that need to be documented as an ironman type day, as a day where somebody knew they weren't 100 percent physically prepared, but they went out there and overcame it mentally to win.           

And it's amazing what the body can do. And for him to go through that wreck this week and to get back on his horse right away and find success, that's only going to make Brad Keselowski a better racer.            

Q. Kyle, can you just describe, Kyle, after that penalty, how you made your way back up through the field so quickly?           

KYLE BUSCH:  It comes down to a great race car. Dave and the guys, like I said, we unloaded Friday really good. We were really good I felt off the truck and through the practice we made some changes spent most of our time in race trim. Qualifying well helped us getting that track position but then I ruined it. I just like coming from the back here, I guess, I might as well just start from there every time. But certainly we had a great car to be able to work our way through the traffic and come back up through there as quickly as we did and as smoothly as we did.           

So I was kind of surprised by that, but, you know, felt really good about where our car was, when we did do that.            

Q. Kyle, were you upset about that penalty?           

KYLE BUSCH:  For a moment. Certainly I felt like I slid across the commitment line before the caution came out, because I still heard guys racing behind me because my car was shut off. And then I heard cars lifting out of the throttle and slowing down. So I felt like we were across the line, but that's not for me to decide. I didn't see the film.           

So NASCAR's got better judgment of that, and we have to leave it to them to police us and put us in the right spot.            

Q. Were you surprised that he raced?           

KYLE BUSCH:  Who?            

Q. Brad.           

KYLE BUSCH:  I sprained my ankle two years ago and had to go through the most retarded exam ever to make sure I could put weight on my foot. And I don't even know how Brad put weight on his foot today but he was walking around with a boot on and everything.           

So, I don't know, mine was a tenth of the injury that his is, and I had to go through NASCAR physical inspection. I guess I had to make sure I fit templates. His doesn't.           

KURT BUSCH:  I was amazed that he raced the full race. My initial thought was we've got to get Sam Hornish, Jr. up here or Parker Kligerman to be on standby. Your first thought is you can swap out a driver here without losing a lap.           

But this is a day that needs to be documented as Keselowski's win and not the feud between Busch and Jimmie, because what we do is just race hard on the track every week. And that's the way I'd like it to be documented, and if we watch the tape, we'll see that the 48 swerved into us first and I know that before even watching the tape.

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Posted on: July 29, 2011 1:44 pm
Edited on: July 29, 2011 1:46 pm

Kyle Busch launches safe driving initiative

Posted by Pete Pistone

Kyle Busch has partnered with a nationally-recognized passenger safety driving effort in the aftermath of his much-publicized speeding violation earlier this year when he we cited for going 128 mph in a 45 mph zone outside Charlotte:

From News Release

Concord, N.C.  (Friday, July 29, 2011) – B.R.A.K.E.S. (Be Responsible And Keep Everyone Safe), founded in 2008 by professional NHRA drag racer Doug Herbert will graduate its 3,000th student next month and the organization will expand the role of one of the Nation’s most popular racecar drivers with its team.  Kyle Busch, driver for Kyle Busch Motorsports and Joe Gibbs Racing in NASCAR’s top three driving series’ will join Doug Herbert in helping to promote the benefits of proactive driver education for new teenage drivers.  

“This month marks an important milestone as we graduate our 3,000th student.  While Kyle has supported B.R.A.K.E.S. in the past by helping our fundraising events, we are very excited that he’s stepping up his involvement with us even further.” said Doug Herbert, Founder of B.R.A.K.E.S.  “Kyle will help us put additional teens through our school as well as enhance our awareness campaign focusing on the number one killer of teens in America.”  

The Kyle Busch Foundation has agreed to sponsor ten schools putting more than 300 students through the B.R.A.K.E.S. half-day school over the next year.  Kyle will be joining Doug Herbert in several public service announcements promoting B.R.A.K.E.S. as well as incorporating the organization as an associate sponsor on his No. 18 NASCAR Truck entry.  

“Doug took a very tragic situation and turned it into something very positive” stated Kyle Busch.  “After spending time with Doug and getting to hear his story, it’s easy to see why he’s so passionate about this cause. I hope to not only increase awareness for their cause, but also learn from them through my involvement. It’s very easy to make judgment errors when we’re behind the wheel and today’s teens are particularly vulnerable since they don’t usually have the advanced education or experience.  I’m looking forward to working further with Doug and the B.R.A.K.E.S. team as they continue their mission of keeping teens safe behind the wheel”.  

Put On The B.R.A.K.E.S. will be hosting its third annual benefit dinner and auction on Thursday, September 15th, 2011 at the Speedway Club at the Charlotte Motor Speedway.  Tickets are $150/person with table and corporate sponsorships available.  For ticket or donation information call Laura Lovett at 704-720-3806 or go to www.putonthebrakes.org


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Category: Auto Racing
Posted on: July 26, 2011 3:36 pm

Kyle Busch leader in NASCAR exposure

Posted by Pete Pistone

From News Release

Kyle Busch was mentioned more often and collected the most on-screen time, verbal references and exposure value for his sponsors than any other driver during race telecasts chronicling the first half of the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.

According to research conducted by Joyce Julius & Associates, Inc. -- which has monitored every NASCAR race telecast over the last 27 seasons -- Busch’s sponsors as a group appeared for 12 hours, 31 minutes, seven seconds (12:31:07) during live and replayed telecasts of the season’s first 18 races. 

When also factoring in verbal mentions (142) of Busch’s sponsors, the Cup Series points-leader at mid-year amassed nearly $38.4 million of in-broadcast exposure value for his backing brands. 

Joyce Julius calculates television exposure value by comparing the in-broadcast visual and verbal exposure to the estimated cost of a national commercial during the telecast and applying Joyce Julius Recognition Grading -- which takes into account such factors as size and placement of the image on screen, as well as brand clutter and integration of the brand into the activity. 

Fox and TNT race announcers also mentioned Busch by name on 2,722 occasions during the first half of the season, or about 36% more frequently than the next closest competitor, Carl Edwards. 

Edwards, who ranked fifth in overall sponsor exposure, did manage to surpass Busch in the number of TV interviews (29 compared to 23) and total interview time (0:30:46 versus 0:29:57). 

Fan favorite driver Dale Earnhardt Jr., despite receiving nearly half as many announcer mentions as Busch, garnered the second highest cumulative exposure value total for his sponsors with a showing of more than $26.5 million.

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Posted on: July 25, 2011 1:52 pm
Edited on: July 25, 2011 1:53 pm

Catching up on NASCAR

By Pete Pistone

While I still smell a bit like sunscreen and the pile of clothes from vacation week sits high in the laundry room, it’s time to get back to work. It was a very enjoyable ten days away with the family with lots of sun, fun and activities no to mention some time to just recharge the batteries. 

Now we get ready for a grueling 17-week stretch to end the NASCAR season with this weekend’s activities in Indianapolis kicking things off. It will be the last time the annual mid-summer trip to Indy it split between the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Lucas Oil raceway in nearby Clermont with the Nationwide race going to the “big track” next year and the Camping World Truck Series reportedly heading out of Indy completely. So while it will be hectic covering both schedules at the pair of tracks this weekend, it’s going to be a bittersweet trip to be sure. 

While we were away there were a few items of note to catch up on: 

Several Sprint Cup teams took the opportunity to change crew chiefs with some high profile names getting swept aside. Chip Ganassi decided to swap Brian Pattie with Jim Pohlman in hopes of turning the fortunes of Juan Pablo Montoya around. Greg Erwin was replaced by Matt Pucia on Greg Biffle’s ride but quickly found a home at Richard Petty Motorsports where he’ll take over for Mike Shiplett calling the shots for A.J. Allmendinger. And there are reports Todd Berrier is out at Richard Childress Racing with a group of crew chiefs planning to work with Jeff Burton the rest of the season. There will no doubt me more crew chief changes as the Chase draws nearer with many teams who don’t make the playoff race getting a jump-start on 2012. 

Nationwide Series driver Michael Annett lost his driver’s license when he pleaded guilty to a February 6th DUI charge in North Carolina when his blood alcohol level registered a .32, four times the legal state limit. The decision won’t impact Annett’s NASCAR career, as drivers do not need a legal street vehicle license in order to compete. The sanctioning body released the following statement in the aftermath of the ruling: "We've continued to test Michael as a condition of his NASCAR probation. He's been very cooperative and has done what we've asked of him. He appears to be doing everything he needs to in order to make this matter right." Again nowhere does NASCAR say anything about not condoning this kind of action in any way or that Annett will do any kind of public service work in response to the incident. Puzzling why the sport doesn’t take a more solid step in defending its image or that of its athletes. 

Speaking of image, NASCAR didn’t come out too well in that department last Saturday night at the Nationwide Series race in Nashville. The pre-race invocation by Pastor Joe Nelms was, well you can decide for yourself:


I’m all for having fun and a sense of humor but my opinion was this one went a bit to far. And in the process the old stereotype of red necks and NASCAR got reinforced yet again. 

Kasey Kahne was uninjured when he was involved in a wild flip while competing in a World of Outlaws Sprint Car Race at Pennsylvania’s Williams Grove Speedway last weekend:


You have to wonder when Sprint Cup owners will stop their drivers from competing in local and regional races outside of NASCAR where an injury could wipe out or at least severely impede their day jobs. 

Kyle Busch didn’t take much time off during the Sprint Cup off weekend. He went on a barnstorming tour with his asphalt late model and continued his winning ways with victories in two of the season’s most prestigious short track events at Maine’s Oxford Plains Speedway first taking the checkered flag in PASS-sanctioned 150 laps feature and following it up with a win in the TD Bank Oxford 250 Sunday night. Busch also won the Slinger Nationals in Wisconsin earlier this month. It’s interesting to note that while many fans don’t like Sprint Cup regulars winning regularly in the Nationwide or truck series there isn’t much of an outcry when they’re victorious on the short track level, yet anyway.  

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Posted on: July 19, 2011 11:40 am
Edited on: July 20, 2011 12:22 am

Idle Thoughts: No vacation in NASCAR

By Pete Pistone

  Ryan Newman, Driver Of The #39 U.S. Army Chevrolet, And Tony Stewart, Driver Of The #14 Office Depot/Mobil 1

My annual mid-summer vacation to spend time with the family and re-charge the old battery pack is here. But in this 24/7 world we live in it’s nearly impossible to break completely away from the work world and of course in my case that’s the NASCAR beat. 

So even as I enjoy the down time and get ready to come back full force for the 17 straight weeks that will end the season, here’s a quick view on some of the more interesting items that have gone on in the NASCAR world the last several days:

Kyle Busch won his 100th NASCAR national division race over the weekend with his New Hampshire Nationwide Series victory. It’s an impressive accomplishment to be sure especially when you factor in that Busch has achieved all those wins at the relatively tender age of 26. But other than a tip of the hat the record has absolutely no historical significance at all. NASCAR itself has trumpeted Busch’s quest for the last month or so and in the process completely confused a large segment of both fans and media. Richard Petty is the all-time career win leader in the Sprint Cup Series – the top level of the sport. Kyle Busch’s 100 wins across three divisions does not put him halfway to Petty’s record, as so many media outlets reported last weekend. Winning in the Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series is great but adding those triumphs to victories in the Cup Series and then comparing them to marks set at NASCAR’s highest level is just flat wrong. 

Speaking of Cup drivers competing in NASCAR’s lower divisions some disturbing news came out of New Hampshire in the aftermath of Ryan Newman’s fourth straight modified series win. Newman’s car, owned by Jamie McMurray’s crew chief Kevin “Bono” Manion, was confiscated by NASCAR following last Saturday’s race. Now there are reports of an illegal manifold intake being used on the car and penalties to be handed down by NASCAR. That’s quite an embarrassment to Newman and Manion – and NASCAR - if true but more importantly a slap in the face to every other driver and team that support the sanctioning body’s oldest division throughout the year. Rather than having their moment in the sun with a big time race on a Sprint Cup weekend, modified regulars were forced to watch a Cup interloper come in, steal the spotlight and spank the field – in an illegal car.  Not a proud moment to be sure. 

I listened to Bruton Smith’s comments last week when he was asked during his meeting with media at New Hampshire about the Kentucky fiasco and was simply flabbergasted. While Speedway Motorsports Inc. did its best in the aftermath try and clean up at least a little of the damage caused by what happened the Saturday night before, Smith’s arrogance and flat out disregard for race fans eliminated any of that goodwill. The theory Smith knew what was going to happen and sat back to allow it in an attempt to get local government to pay for improvements that his company and track would then benefit from doesn’t sound so far fetched any longer. NASCAR stepped up to address things and president Mike Helton seemed very sincere that the sanctioning body would take a much more active role in ensuring Kentucky would be up to par to host an event in the future. But what can be done in a year’s time so the July 2012 race will be any different? The Kentucky race and Smith’s comments have caused a great harm to the sport in general and many fans – who assume the experience is the norm for attending any race on the schedule – will simply choose to watch on TV rather than buying a ticket filled with aggravation. 

As part of my yearly summer vacation we’re going to gather up the family and as many cousins, nieces and nephews as we can and take them to a Saturday night short track race, namely Rockford Speedway which is about an hour’s drive from my Chicago area home base. We started this tradition a few years ago and the kids, ranging from ages 5-12, ask about it almost all year long. Last Christmas Eve’s family gathering included pulling out the calendar and penciling in this summer’s trip. While the top levels of NASCAR are great you can’t beat affordable family entertainment at the weekly track level. So while summer is in full blaze, who not take advantage of one of the more than 600 tracks around the country that put on racing entertainment on a weekly basis. It’s one of the highlights of our summer vacation time and it can be one of yours as well.


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Posted on: July 15, 2011 1:50 pm
Edited on: July 15, 2011 5:13 pm

Kyle Busch looking for NASCAR win No. 100 in NH

Posted by Brian De Los Santos

Kyle Busch is one away from 100 career NASCAR victories (22 Cup, 48 Nationwide, 29 Truck) and there's a decent chance he'll cross the century mark this weekend in New Hampshire. He's the two-time defending winner of the Nationwide Series race at the track, where he also has a win in the Cup Series (2006).

Last week's winner and new points leader talked with the media Friday morning:

Are you happy with the first half of your season?

"It's certainly been a good start to the year.  We feel pretty good about things and where we've been and where we've come
from.  Certainly we're excited about the events here at New Hampshire and bringing out Interstate Batteries colors back to the race track again in the Cup series.  Try to get Norm (Miller, Interstate Batteries) and the boys a win and we'll see what we can do.  It's definitely one of those places where sometimes I'm good and sometimes I'm not, but certainly hoping for better things than others.  It's great to be the points leader and we'd love to be able to keep that roll, but mostly get a couple more wins maybe before the start of the Chase.  But, if not, maybe save some of those wins for inside the Chase and try to solidify our chances come Homestead for a championship."

Will your team experiment at all leading up to the Chase considering you have three wins?

"Not really.  I think our biggest thing is just about going about it the way that we have already and just bringing things to the race track that we know work well.  I think anytime you get off base it can kind of mess you up.  It's kind of the old age term where (you) 'Go back to basics.'  That seems to be where we always find ourselves.  Just concentrating on hitting everything the right way and making sure that you don't try to do anything too far out of the box."

What is it like to know that you are one win away from having 100 NASCAR victories?

"To me, it's a lot easier than the media I guess.  I don't think about it.  For myself, it's just my own milestone.  It doesn't have anything to do with anybody else's milestone that's been in the sport.  It's something that I said I wanted to accomplish for Kyle Busch, not something that I wanted to accomplish in order to beat David Pearson or Richard Petty or anybody else out there.  To me, it's just like when I was a little kid I wanted something to reach for so I put the Sprint Cup Series on a pedestal and went after it and tried to see if I could get there.  Opportunity arose, I made it and now the next step is what else can you do?  You put a championship up there, you put a lot of wins up there.  Just something to kind of keep you going over the years just to kind of make sure you don't fall flat and get stagnant and just ride around out here."

Is there a difference between winning 100 races now compared to the people who reached it earlier in NASCAR history?

"Yeah, certainly there is a difference there.  To know exactly what that is I have no idea.  I don't know because for one I wasn't even born yet, and those guys may not know because they're not racing today so they don't know what it's like today.  Last time I checked I didn't have a time machine in my pocket so I can't go back and run in those days although I'd like to.  I think it would be fun.  Certainly, it's definitely different.  Why is it different?  I'm not sure that I can answer that."

Will there be a point where desperation sets in for some drivers trying to get in the Chase due to the new format?

"I think you will for some.  I think those guys that are -- I think the bubble from 10th to 11th is like four or six points or something like that so it's pretty close.  You'll probably see eighth through 13th probably in pretty good desperation, which typically you see it every year, but more so this year because it's either top-10 or it's wins.  So, if you're sitting 12th and you can get a win you get yourself knocked back in.  It's going to be important for those guys.  I don't know that you're going to see any craziness happen, I hope, but who knows.  This is NASCAR racing at its best so we'll see what happens."

Have you ever 'tweeted' something and regretted it?

"Not off the top of my head.  I don't spend enough time on there to know what I do or do not 'tweet' really.  I can't remember what I did yesterday for lunch regardless of what I'm tweeting.  Sometimes it's messages to the fans or messages trying to get the sponsors message out or something like that.  Obviously have a strong following, I think we're at -- I saw a sponsorship proposal the other day -- 72,000 plus or something followers.  And, I think 8,000 plus on Kyle Busch Motorsports.  We're doing alright.  I guess that just means we're popular.  I don't know.  Not as much as some others of course.  If I had that bilingual thing figured out, man, I'd rack in some followers, I'll tell you that.  Tony Kanaan and Juan Pablo (Montoya), those guys, man, they seem to be able to figure that out.  There are some things I wish I could tweet to put people back in their place, but I've got a little bit more respect and tact than that so I'll leave that to the imagination."

Can you win a Sprint Cup Series championship?

"We'll see.  I've won a Nationwide championship and obviously that's way different than a Cup championship.  Ultimately that's the next task.  That's the next challenge.  We're up for it, we're looking forward to it.  I feel like this is the best opportunity we've had in the past few years.  Dave (Rogers, crew chief) has done a really nice job building the team and the team has been right there following him every step of the way.  It takes leadership.  It takes guys believing in the program which I feel like we're at so we'll see how it goes.  I'd certainly like to think that we're championship caliber and that if we can get one knocked out of the way then we're champions for the rest of our lives.  Then we can go after two, three or however many more."

How many of your 99 NASCAR wins do you remember and do you remember the details from each win?

"I'm thinking more about the next one than I am about the last one.  When Kentucky was over I went back to the motorhome and went to sleep.  Nothing exciting, no party, no up all night and no old Dick Trickle stories where it only takes one hour of sleep for every 100 laps that you're going to race the next day.  I went to bed and made sure I got as much sleep as I could for Slinger, Wisconsin to race the Late Models on Sunday.  Like Vegas, I remember some details about that. I just remember being really loose all day.  We were making changes and just nothing would really work, but yet then we got track position, got out-front and Bobby Labonte was chasing me down, I think, in the Ask.com car and couldn't quite
get there.  So I remember that much.  I remember winning a Nationwide Series race at Daytona on the morning of the Cup race and then finishing second to Jamie McMurray by that much.  I remember a lot of details, it's just a matter if you want me to sit here for four hours and explain all of them to you.  I've got the time for one and probably you all don't want to have the time for two."

What percent of your wins do you remember?

"If I had a little help and went down a list with somebody, I could probably tell you something about every single one of them.  Off the top of my head, I could probably rattle off to you about 40 or 50 of them maybe."

What did you learn from the 2008 Chase that can help you this year?

"I think the biggest thing is that you have to be prepared.  You have to have your guys doing a good job.  You have to do a good job.  Whenever we came here to Loudon, I probably didn't do the best job in practice getting the car setup like I needed it.  Sunday on the race we didn't quite get the sway bar bolt tightened up all the way or something happened there and something broke.  Obviously, we lost our sway bar and struggled along here.  Went the following week to Dover and blew an engine.  Then we went the following week to Kansas and felt like we had water in the fuel system.  Things like that just seem to relegate us to finishes that we hadn't seen all year that we didn't want to have happen at that moment, but it did. Certainly we hope we can have better success."

Do you feel like things have stabilized between Joe Gibbs Racing and Richard Childress Racing?

"You bring up a bad past and I'm not worried about that.  To me, I'm worried about the future and what we can do to win a championship.  Whatever it was that did or didn't initiate it or start it doesn't matter to me, it's not the point.  The point is trying to move on and get over things in your life and just try to make sure that you do things the best way that you possibly know how to do it and let the rest take care of itself.  For us, I feel like our opportunity here is to go out and run the best we can each and every week and when we worry about what we're doing and how our program is running, the rest of it doesn't matter."

What do you know about the Joe Gibbs Racing engine program?

"Our engine program at JGR (Joe Gibbs Racing) for as much as I know is solid.  We are having the guys from TRD (Toyota Racing Development) Costa Mesa helping us out and do some of the R&D work with the new fuel injection system.  We're not too in depth with that yet.  I know Mark (Cronquist, JGR engine builder) and the guys have definitely been sorting all their pieces out and looking at options.  The engine department at JGR is strong and good and the past few weeks we've had some really good engines on the race track.  I felt like we actually had made improvements.  Unfortunately, we had an issue last week with Denny's (Hamlin) car, but at least it comes in practice and not throughout the race."

Who builds your engines for Kyle Busch Motorsports and do you have any plans for a Nationwide Series team?

"Our engines for the Kyle Busch Motorsports truck team come from Toyota Racing Technologies, which is the old Triad I guess.  So that's where our stuff comes from.  Nationwide plans for next year are all about funding.  We'd love to be able to put an opportunity together for another driver in our cars to be able to go out for the Nationwide Series championship and not have to have me run some and somebody else run some.  We'd like to be able to race after an owner's championship as well as a driver's championship.  That's our first and foremost goal.  We haven't found much success in being able to sell sponsorship for that, but we'll do what we can and we'll see where we get."

What does Jimmie Johnson do to win a championship that you need to do?

"I think the thing that they do well is just, man they are able to execute.  They know what they need to do, they concentrate on hitting all their marks -- they cross their T's, they dot their I's and they dot their lower case j's.  Just kind of what I said last week.  It's a fact -- it's a sport of attention to detail.  Those guys seem to be really good at that.  Chad (Knaus, 48 crew chief) on pit road throughout the race, he'll keep making changes to the car and they tend to keep getting better.  They've just got a good way of going about it.  They only have one win and they only have one win at a restrictor plate race this year.  If you asked me, was I worried that they're not a championship contender?  No, I'm definitely worried.  Those guys, you don't ever count them out one bit.  Not in any race do you count them out.  Even last week, I'm leading the race or whatever and Jimmie's (Johnson) running second or third and I was like, they might just all of the sudden come up with something here that they can win the race.  They're always on the back of your mind, but certainly we'd like to think we've been successful at doing all that this year and that's what the first 26 races are about.  You kind of practice through those things.  You get it done all the right way and then when it comes to the final 10 -- you just keep going about it and don't change your ways and make it happen."

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Category: Auto Racing
Tags: Kyle Busch
Posted on: July 13, 2011 11:14 am

Video of the Day: Kyle Busch wins late model race

Posted by Pete Pistone

Kyle Busch's winning weekend didn't stop at Kentucky Speedway. After winning both the Camping World Truck Series and Sprint Cup Series races in the Bluegrass State, Busch made the trek to Wisconsin's Slinger Speedway where he won Sunday night's prestigious late model Slinger Nationals 200-lap event:

Category: Auto Racing
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