Already a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion, Kurt Busch added NASCAR’s next piece of prestigious hardware to his trophy case when he won the DAYTONA 500 two weeks ago.
Although he’s a champion and now has a win in NASCAR’s biggest race, he still desperately wants to win at his home track – Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Busch will get the chance to do that when the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series takes the 1.5-mile oval for Sunday’s Kobalt 400 (3:30 p.m. ETon FOX).
“It’s just fun to come back and reminisce,” Busch said. “But, ultimately you’ve got to strap on the helmet and focus on the task at hand. It’s always special in Vegas.”
The No. 41 Ford driver has struggled at Las Vegas, where he grew up racing on the three-eighth-mile bullring. In 16 starts there, he only has four top-10 finishes with a high showing of third (2005). Last season, Busch finished ninth and led 31 laps in his hometown.
Sunday’s race kicks off a three-contest West Coast swing – known as NASCAR Goes West – for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.
“The West Coast swing is a perfect gauge for how your work went through the off-season, whether it’s the wind tunnel, the chassis dyno, new development, and then the team, as far as how the pit crew is performing,” Busch said. “Those races on the West Coast swing really can put a stamp on where you are, what needs to be done, and what weaknesses or strengths we have.”
Despite success at Phoenix and Auto Club, both tracks where he has won, Las Vegas remains Busch’s favorite destination on the West Coast Swing.
“My hometown of Las Vegas, going back there to see family, friends, and restaurants, there’s this old-school place where we always used to go get pizza when I was a kid, it’s just great to go back to the roots and reminisce. It gets you back to where everything started, going to Vegas.”
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!