MILWAUKEE MILE A NEW ERA BEGINS
NASCAR's KURT BUSCH TESTS "CAR OF TOMORROW" AT TH MIL E
Sentimental Track for 2000 Truck Series Race Winner
MIILWAUKEE (September 27, 2006) -- 2004 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup champion Kurt Busch tested his Penske Engineering "Car of Tomorrow" at The Milwaukee Mile today. NASCAR is introducing a new-design race car that will be phased in beginning in March of 2007 in the NEXTEL Cup Series, and Busch's team is one of several NASCAR teams in recent weeks to test their race cars at The Mile.
NEXTEL Cup teams are allowed to test as often as they wish at non-NEXTEL Cup tracks. According to Busch, The Milwaukee Mile is an ideal place to test, and offers some key benefits to his team with their development of the car that will be raced in 16 races at 10 different speedways next season.
"NASCAR is going to run these cars on tracks a mile and less, so (The Milwaukee Mile) will be equivalent to the largest track these cars will race on," he said. "The Mile offers great comparisons for Phoenix, great comparisons for New Hampshire, somewhat at Richmond, work on your brakes here, work on getting your car set down on the ground. It is a very smooth generous race track that allows for good speed and good braking. It's just the all-around best test track that we can run the Car of Tomorrow on."
In recent weeks, Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sebates, Hendrick Motorsports and Joe Gibbs Racing have also logged laps with their Car of Tomorrow race cars at The Milwaukee Mile.
The Milwaukee Mile was the sight of Busch's first NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race victory in 2000, in what was the 28 year-old's only race event at America's Legendary Oval. He has tested a NEXTEL Cup car at The Mile on several occasions since, most recently with his #2 Miller Lite 'Cup car in late June.
While Busch's first trip to victory lane in a major NASCAR event is a lasting memory, he's also sentimental toward The Milwaukee Mile for another reason; his dad Tom grew up in Chicago, and as a youngster in the 1970's attended races at The Milwaukee Mile with Kurt's grandfather.
"My dad used to come here all the time with my grandfather, who wasn't too big on the Chicago area short tracks -- he liked the big mile -- the Indy cars, stock cars," Busch said. "They came to a lot of races, and as a matter of fact, my dad said he used to crawl up into a roof vent behind Section O (of the old covered grandstand) and take naps as a child on race weekends."
For race fans looking ahead to the 2007 season schedule, an announcement will be forthcoming. Already announced is the move to Sunday, June 3rd for the ABC Supply / A.J. Foyt Indy 225 IndyCar Series race. It will be the 49th time that the Milwaukee Mile IndyCar Series race will immediately follow the running of the Indianapolis 500. For more information on this return to tradition, team testing and the latest Milwaukee Mile happenings, visit the speedway's website, www.milwaukeemile.com.