Kurt Busch Is Looking To Copy The Tom Sneva Pattern

Kurt Busch

Tom Sneva was the fastest qualifier for the 1977 Indianapolis 500-Mile Race.

He set a one-lap record of 200.535 mph and a record four-lap average of 198.884 mph during his May 1977 run at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where a qualifying run is made up of four laps.

What did he do when he came back to Indianapolis in 1978?

Set new one- and four-lap records!

In May 1978, Sneva upped his one-lap record to 203.620 mph and his record four-lap average to 202.156 mph.

Kurt Busch, who finished sixth in the 2014 Indianapolis 500-Mile Race, is looking to repeat Sneva’s accomplishments this week at the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth.

While Sneva set records in an Indy car, Busch is hoping his No. 41 Haas Automation/Monster Energy Ford Fusion stock car fielded by Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), will set another record at the 1.5-mile Texas oval.

In November 2017, Busch posted a lap of 200.915 mph, the fastest ever in a stock car on a 1.5-mile oval, to win his 22nd career pole.

Busch is hoping he can up his game in this week’s O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 at Texas and get his 23rd career pole and his 30th career win in NASCAR’s top series.

Busch has two poles, one win, three top-five finishes and 17 top-10s at the 1.5-mile oval.

Additionally, the 39-year-old driver has led 295 laps, has an average starting position of 14.2, an average finish of 15.1, and has completed 98.4 percent – 9,845 of 10,003 – of the laps he’s contested there.

Texas native Pat Green once sang that he had “Texas On My Mind.”

Busch just has speed on his mind!

KURT BUSCH, Driver of the No. 41 Haas Automation/Monster Energy Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing: 
Talk about how challenging Texas Motor Speedway is.

“It was an incredible qualifying run last year and to set a track record. The feel of the tire and the asphalt were better in the fall than the spring. So, now that it’s aged even more through the wintertime with the rain and the cold and the track settling a little bit more, the track will be that much better. And, what I saw last year during the playoff race at Texas was a textbook pass for the lead with Kevin Harvick passing (Martin) Truex (Jr.) going into turn one. He was able to cut underneath him in turn two. Then you get that run through the fast sections between turns three and four. Texas Motor Speedway has a very unique layout with the speed differences between three and four and one and two.”


Overall thoughts heading to Texas this week?

“Texas is a good track for us and a good market. I always enjoy coming out to Texas. Hopefully, the weather will look perfect for this weekend. It’s a great track.”


Talk about your record-setting lap last year at Texas.

“(Turns) three and four are an incredible sensation. Once the car goes into the banking, it travels. The suspension collapses in the car and the car gets lower to the ground and picks up speed because you are lower to the ground and have less drag. It is a sensation that is hard to describe. When you have that grip level in the car, it gives you the feeling that you can just put it down to the floor and there won’t be any consequences. Turns one and two are where I think the lap times come from – if you can get it to hook and stay right on the bottom because that end of the track is a lot flatter. You have to back out of the gas all the way. Then, in three and four, you can hold it wide open. Both ends of the track are very different. It is a cool sensation going through three and four almost holding it wide open.”

Haas Automation/Monster Energy Racing Team Report
Round 7 of 36 –  O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 – Texas Motor Speedway


Car No.: 41 – Haas Automation/Monster Energy Ford Fusion


PR Contact: Joe Crowley, True Speed Communication (704-875-3388, ext. 808, Joe.Crowley@TrueSpeedCommunication.com)

Primary Team Members:
Driver: Kurt Busch
Hometown: Las Vegas
Crew Chief: Billy Scott
Hometown: Land O’ Lakes, Florida
Car Chief: Tony Cardamone
Hometown: Bristol, Virginia

Engine Builder: Roush-Yates Engines
Headquarters: Mooresville, North Carolina


Engine Specialist: Evan Cupples
Hometown: Hudson, Illinois


Spotter: Tony Raines
Hometown: LaPorte, Indiana

Over-The-Wall Crew Members:
Gas Man: Rick Pigeon
Hometown: Fairfax, Vermont
Front Tire Changer: Shane Pipala
Hometown: Frankfort Square, Illinois
Windshield: Kyle Anderson (also serves as interior mechanic)
Hometown: Jewell, Iowa
Rear Tire Changer: Coleman Dollarhide
Hometown: Hickory, North Carolina
Jackman: Sean Cotten
Hometown: Mooresville, North Carolina
Tire Carrier: Dwayne Moore
Hometown: Griffin, Georgia
Road Crew Members:
Truck Driver: Rocky Boggs and Larry Lush
Hometowns: Burlington, North Carolina, and Waynesville, North Carolina
Tire Specialist: Nathan McGuire
Hometown: Palmyra, New York
Shock Specialist: Aaron Kuehn
Hometown: Kensington, Connecticut
Engineers: Scott Bingham and William Lee
Hometowns: Lawrenceville, Georgia and Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina

Mechanic: Nick McIntosh
Hometown: Harve, Montana


Mechanic: Joe Zanolini
Hometown: Sybertsville, Pennsylvania
Texas Motor Speedway Notes of Interest:
· The O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 will mark Kurt Busch’s 619th career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series start and his 31st career NASCAR Cup Series start at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth.Busch has two poles, one win, three top-five finishes and 17 top-10s at the 1.5-mile oval. Additionally, the 39-year-old driver has led 295 laps, has an average starting position of 14.2, an average finish of 15.1, and has completed 98.4 percent (9,845 of 10,003) of the laps he’s contested there.


· Busch has career total totals of 29 wins, 22 poles, 131 top-fives, 260 top-10s and 8,951 laps led in 618 starts.


· His most recent Cup Series win came 42 races ago in the Daytona 500 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway (Feb. 26, 2017).


· His last Cup Series pole came nine races ago at Texas (Nov. 3, 2017).

· Previous Win – Busch has one career NASCAR Cup Series win at Texas, which came in November 2009. It was his second victory that season and the 20th of his career and came by a nearly 26-second margin. Busch led six times for 89 laps.


· The Las Vegas native has two poles to his credit (April 2015 and November 2017) at Texas. Busch has 22 career NASCAR Cup Series poles. His November 2017 lap of 200.915 mph set a NASCAR record at a 1.5-mile track.


· Busch has led laps in 12 of his 30 career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series starts at Texas for a combined total of 295 laps led. Busch has led 50 or more laps in a race twice at Texas. In addition to his 89 laps led in the November 2009 win, he led 50 laps in April 2011 en route to a 10th-place finish.


·   A Win in Other Series at Texas – In April 2006, Busch scored the victory in his first-ever NASCAR Xfinity Series start. He became the fifth driver to win the race in his first start in NASCAR’s second-tier series. He also earned the distinction of becoming the 16th driver to record a victory in all three of NASCAR’s top-tier series – Cup, Xfinity and Camping World Truck.


· Thus Far in 2018 – Busch has accumulated two top-10 finishes and four top-15s in six races.


· Get to the Points – With his 11th-place finish two weekends ago at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway, Busch is 10th in the NASCAR Cup Series championship standings with 177 points.


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