Date: Oct. 16, 2016
Event: Hollywood Casino 400 (Round 31 of 36)
Series: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Location: Kansas Speedway in Kansas City (1.5-mile oval)
Start/Finish: 2nd/5th (Running, completed 267 of 267 laps)
Points: 4th with 3,072 points, 27 ahead of 9th place in Round of 12
Winner: Kevin Harvick of Stewart-Haas Racing (Chevrolet)
- Kyle Busch, driver of the No. 18 M&M’S Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR), finished fifth in Sunday’s Hollywood Casino 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City
- Various handling issues plagued the reigning Sprint Cup Series champ from the drop of the green flag. While almost all 40 drivers noted a loose-handling issue in turns three and four, Busch’s issues were exacerbated by the fact that his car wouldn’t turn in the corners.
- Lack of grip and tight-handling issues persisted despite a series of chassis and air pressure adjustments, and Busch dropped to 10th place by lap 55.
- Crew chief Adam Stevens continued to call for various adjustment combinations in the hope of finding a balance that would allow Busch to negotiate the 1.5-mile oval. The persistence paid off as the race continued, with Busch reporting just past lap 200 that the car was much better at the start of the run. The proof was on the track as he steadily made his way back among the top-five.
- The team exercised a strategy call late in the race, electing to make a stop for four fresh tires during the final caution on lap 235. Quick pit work put the No. 18 M&M’S Toyota in seventh place for the restart on lap 237. With fresh tires, Busch went to the outside and had climbed to third by the time the field came back around to complete the lap. He spent the next several laps trading places for second place with teammate Carl Edwards.
- A tight-handling condition that developed on the car as the race drew to its end dropped Busch a bit to fifth place, which is where he was scored when the checkered flag was displayed.
Busch Discusses the Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas:
“This M&M’s Camry was really awesome today. We had really good short-run speed, we just didn’t have long-run speed. I hated that we weren’t able to go up there and race the 4 (Kevin Harvick) and get more out of it, but we just had to fade gracefully there towards the end and didn’t have enough to chase those guys down. I wish we did. Our car was fast all through practice and everything this whole weekend. We just missed it here for the race. We just didn’t get our race adjustments right.”
The following are the race results of Busch’s JGR teammates in the Hollywood Casino 400:
- Edwards, driver of the No. 19 Xfinity Toyota, finished second.
- Matt Kenseth, driver of the No. 20 DeWalt Flexvolt Toyota, finished ninth.
- Denny Hamlin, driver of the No. 11 FedEx Express Toyota, finished 15th.
The next event on the Sprint Cup schedule – the sixth race of the Chase – is the Oct. 23 Alabama 500 at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway. The race starts at 2 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by NBCSN.
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!