Busch Eyes First Kentucky NASCAR Triple Crown
Kyle Busch's win in Thursday's Camping World Truck Series "UNOH 225" spurred thoughts the 26-year-old driver could pull off the first NASCAR three-series in Kentucky Speedway history and the second of his career this weekend.
Busch delivered the first weekend triple in NASCAR history last season by nailing down an Aug. 18 NCWTS victory, an Aug. 20 Nationwide Series win and a Sprint Cup Series triumph on Aug. 21 at Bristol Motor Speedway.
He can take the next step in securing the first NASCAR Triple Crown in commonwealth history in tonight's NASCAR Nationwide Series "Feed The Children 300," but will have to dethrone the reigning NNS Kentucky king and Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Joey Logano, who is gunning for his fourth consecutive series pole award and victory at the track.
"If we were here in the old car, I'd certainly say he's (Logano) the favorite. But the new car we're in this year is definitely different.
"The Ford has been really fast and the Harvick team seems strong. We're decent. We're definitely not slouches by any means, but it throws a curveball into the game. We'll see how it plays out tonight, but I hope we're the ones to take it away from him (Logano). I'd hate that I did it, but I need a win tonight to keep it going for tomorrow night," Busch said.
He will enter Saturday's Sprint Cup Series "Quaker State 400" third in the series standings and 10 points off the championship pace being set by leader Kevin Harvick.
Should he be successful tonight, he'll face a taller task tomorrow night in a series marked by parity.
"The competition is so tight. Everybody has a real good sense of this car now, so there's no room for leeway in the rule book for us to get creative and make our car faster than anybody's else's.
"You notice it more when it comes down to the end of the race and strategy. It's how pit strategy plays out, how fuel strategy plays out. That determines who you see in Victory Lane. It's not somebody coming off pit road eighth or 10th, then being able to pass everybody and get up to the lead.
"The cars are so equal and they run the same time so any time you can get out front and not have to race the guys behind you it seems like a better opportunity to put yourself in Victory Lane," Busch said.
Completing the sweep in would make Busch the third driver in NASCAR history to win 100 events and the first driver to take victories in four separate series at Kentucky Speedway. It would also be a first for Busch - an inaugural event win.
"It would be cool, I've never done that before. A lot of guys are upping the ante to try to win this thing. It's not going to come easy, that's for sure. I know Jeff (Gordon) is probably the most successful at doing it.
"We started the weekend out pretty well last night, we'd like to be able to carry that through to win the Nationwide race tonight and then have a good shot on Saturday night.
"We've had some good times so far with our Cup car. It's fast and drives okay, so we're going to try to keep it out of trouble, keep it up front and try to win,"
Sprint Cup Series "Quaker State 400" qualifying is up next and tonight's NNS "Feed the Children 300" starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets for tonight's race are on sale at Kentucky Speedway's gates.
Story by Jeff Hibbs and Mike Schmaltz
- KYS -