Kyle Busch’s Kansas misery keeps right on going
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Kyle Busch hit just about everything during another lousy weekend at Kansas Speedway.
The driver of the No. 18 for Joe Gibbs Racing had to go to a backup car after wrecking in practice. Busch also crashed out of the Truck Series race Saturday. He then spun twice more Sunday, the second time colliding with Joey Logano and ending his afternoon early.
Busch was running 22nd when he slid up the track, turned sideways and headed for the apron. He hit Logano nose to nose in a bone-rattling wreck, leaving debris scattered over the track.
Asked if he was OK, Busch radioed back to his team, “Kansas, right?”
Last weekend’s winner at Texas, Busch has a rough history at the vexing 1 ½-mile tri-oval. It’s one of six tracks on which he’s never won, and he entered the weekend with an average finish of 21st at Kansas — an average that didn’t improve with his 38th-place result Sunday.
“Spun twice on our own,” Busch said. “Just don’t know what to do with Kansas.”
Busch also won earlier this year at Bristol, and had matched a career best by finishing in the top five the past five races. But he dropped to seventh in the standings after his rough afternoon at Kansas, and is 57 points adrift of leader Jimmie Johnson heading to Richmond.
Busch said he was having trouble finding grip early in the race over the recently repaved surface of Kansas Speedway, and that caused him to get sideways in the corner.
When he came back down the track, Logano simply had no place to go.
“I watched it the whole time,” Logano said. “I thought initially he’d come back to cross me and he didn’t. He slapped the wall on the right side so I committed to gunning it to get by him on the bottom and he came back across instead.
“These cars are very unstable, and I think a lot of it is because of the track here, it hasn’t really rubbered in,” he said. “With this hard tire, when the car gets loose they start chattering and it gets really hard to control them. So when you get cars around you, and you’re two-wide and you’re taking more air off of them, you’re having a hard time holding onto it.”
The two cars wound up colliding head-on, and Busch’s car popped up into the air for a moment before crashing back to the asphalt. The front was crumpled enough that he backed it down pit road on his way to the garage.
“Just trying to get back up to the front and making some gains, but the car just snaps out from you every corner,” Busch said.
As for the impact, well, Logano was bracing himself for it.
“What was going through my mind? ‘This is going to hurt,’” he said. “I was committed to going by him on the bottom at that point and as soon as a committed to it he started heading down the race track. At that point I was just kind of screwed.”